In Review: Splooge Invaders (Yep. That’s really what it’s called.)
Was Birth Control Brigade too highbrow for your gaming taste? Enter the Splooge Invaders…literally. Like Birth Control Brigade, the object of the game is to destroy incoming hordes of sperm before they reach the egg of a lucky (or unlucky?) lady. However, there’s only one contraceptive of choice—the tried and true birth control pill. This game requires quicker clicks as the invaders come quite frequently (get your mind out of the gutter!).
Splooge Invaders loses points on the creativity front. The Bedsider gang has an open-minded approach when it comes to birth control control choices—check out our handy dandy Method Explorer for evidence. When there are 18 options, why stick to just one? Truthfully, we’d choose a brigade over an invade any day. Splooge Invaders’ saving grace is the typical teenage boy vernacular (probably NSFW) and the funny song at the beginning. Turn down your speakers at the beginning. (Or maybe your whole computer after the song. Juuussst being honest.)
Khalea Underwood is an intern for the digital media team of The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. When she’s not writing, shopping, or listening to music, the Howard University print journalism student moonlights as an older sister, a contributor for MTVIggy.com, and a copy editor for The Hilltop newspaper.
In Review: “Birth Control Brigade”
A new game created by the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada (SOGC) in celebration of World Contraceptive Day was designed as “a way to reach the youth of Canada and teach them about their birth control options,” according to Dr. Edith Guilbert of SOGC. We’ve read some good things already, but what better (totally unscientific) way to get the real story on the game than to have a college student play it? So we asked our intern, Khalea, to play “Birth Control Brigade” and report back. This is what she had to say:
This isn’t your younger brother’s “Call of Duty.” Birth Control Brigade sends out the preventive troops in order to thwart an unexpected bundle of joy. Fun is definitely an objective, but there are helpful blurbs about the six contraceptive choices included in the game – you may not know them unless you’re currently taking Mrs. Hill’s 11th grade sex-ed class. Though we’re dealing with Canadian currency, defenses ring in from $15 to $35 each, prompting users to barricade on a budget. Birth Control Brigade shows that time is money, love does cost a thing, and knowledge is power.
A U.S. interpretation might be trickier, given that, for example, the IUD can range from $0 to $650 depending on insurance here, but there’s still plenty to learn about the different methods. And imagine a version in which the player has access to whichever method they want for free with their insurance. Now wouldn’t that be a game-changer?
Unplanned Pregnancy (and Planned Un-pregnancy) in The Sims 3
Originally published on August 17, 2009 on SexReally.com.
1.4 million people bought The Sims 3 in the first week it was released, and I was one of them. For those of you who are not familiar with the franchise, here is the premise: The player creates characters, or “sims,” and then controls pretty much everything about them, such as their clothes, house, and traits, and then makes all of their decisions for them. I know this sounds like it would be a total waste of time — it is — but it’s really entertaining.
And when it comes to starting a family in the Sims, things get really interesting. Sims can “WooHoo” without the risk (or, according to some players, with very little risk) of getting pregnant, and to get pregnant the user has to select “Try for baby.” As some people have said in various forums, “WooHoo” is considered by some to mean sex with contraception. Statistically speaking, this makes perfect sense. Even with perfect use of the pill, there’s still a 1% risk of getting pregnant.
For “research purposes,” I wanted to see what would happen if my single, broke Sim had a baby. She had no desire for a baby, but I control everything she does so she didn’t have a choice. I had her invite her boyfriend over to her house and, long story short, when she suggested to him that they try to have a baby he rejected her advances completely (as evidenced in the above photo). And to think, he had no problem when he was WooHoo-ing with her the night before…
Even though my Sim would have ended up a single parent and the boyfriend could have had nothing to do with the baby, he didn’t want a baby. Which, you could say, accurately reflects what a lot of men would want in real life. Unfortunately, in most real-world cases it’s probably more likely that they don’t talk about the possibility of pregnancy and then get the “surprise.”
Curious about what others have been thinking about reproduction in the game, I checked out some message boards. Some players have reported they would applaud having unplanned pregnancies in the game, because it would only make it that much more realistic. There have been a few reports of this happening and some players said they were totally happy about it. But others have reported that they were devastated their Sim had an unplanned pregnancy. One of the posts reads: “Actually that happened to me once.. it was such a shock it totally messed up the story I was planning.”
Another one of my favorite posts involves a player asking around to see if abstinence was the best option because she didn’t want her sim to have any more children: “so i know sims can get pregnant from the try for a baby option which works nearly every time, but can they get pregnant accidentally from having too much woohoo… just wanted to know as my sims have 3 children all ready two toddlers and a baby and i didnt really want any more yet but the male sim has the wish to woohoo. do you think i should risk it or not ?”
But this is my all-time favorite, from a player who tried to click on WooHoo but missed: “Accidentally pressing try for baby sucks. The first time I did this there wasn’t even any delay. And the next day my sim was feeling sick. All I could say was FUCK. Now I have no money, my sim is single, and my baby is sleeping on the floor.”
At least it’s just a game. It’s not like any of this stuff ever happens in real life.
A version of this piece is cross-posted on The National Campaign’s blog, Pregnant Pause.