Playboy: The Mansion - PC

Got packs, screens, info?
Also for: PS2, Xbox
Viewed: 3D Third-person, floating camera Genre:
Strategy: Management
Media: CD Arcade origin:No
Developer: Cyberlore Soft. Co.: Arush
Publishers: Ubisoft (GB)
Released: 4 Mar 2005 (GB)
Ratings: BBFC 18
No Accessories: No Accessories


Whilst video games nowadays delight in exploring all and any of the disturbing violent fantasies that titillate their audience, one rarely hears of many celebrating the best vice: sex. Time was when a young sprog’s first experience of digital naughtiness might have been via the medium of game: Leisure Suit Larry, Strip Poker, whatever that one was called that was like Qix but with the added incentive of soft porn wallpaper. In that most innocent of decades - well, for kids anyway - the eighties, such fare as this was as good as it got; a happy supplement to the much-rewound nude scene in your VHS copy of Wall Street, a coverless copy of Fiesta, courtest of a friend’s enlightened dad, and that old standby - the lingerie section of the Empire Stores catalogue.

These days, kids can get all kinds of kicks via the Internet. Using Dad’s credit card, they can order discreetly-packaged DVDs delivered to their door. Perhaps for these reasons, or perhaps because it’s simply easier for developers to envisage satisfying gameplay revolving around guns rather than seduction, there are more games featuring blood and guts than there are involving other, love-related, bodily effluvia. Not that the sex genre is dead. Our Japanese brothers play a whole slew of big-selling dating games every year, and the Western scene has seen, in recent years, the release of BMX XXX and an all-new Leisure Suit Larry game (the latter banned in Australia!).

So it is with great interest that we greet the release of Playboy: The Mansion on PS2, Xbox and PC. Developed by Cyberlore Studios, the game casts the player as a young, vibrant Hugh Hefner. In a visual style similar to that of the Sims games, Hugh resides in his luxurious and legendary mansion, populated with lovely Californian dolly birds. But it’s not just about seduction and debauchery. Like his real-life counterpart, the Hef in the game has a business to run, and his monthly duties involve finding writers to fill his magazine with articles, and photographers to snap away at the issue’s lucky cover girl and centrefold. To this end, he must host glamorous parties at the mansion, inviting celebrities, musicians, politicians and sports stars who, by the magic of mingling, he can befriend and make business contacts with. Playing the millionaire Playboy host, the more spectacular the parties you throw, the more fame and money you accumulate, which in turn leads to a more interesting magazine, with more intriguing articles. Playboy Photoshoot mode puts you behind the lens, giving you total control over your publication’s visual content, and the pleasure side of Hugh’s busy life is not neglected: pretty much any woman who enters the mansion is susceptible to Hugh’s prodigious powers of seduction. And if another girlfriend happens to be looking on, introduce them and see if a little girl on girl action doesn’t happen!

As the game progresses, you’ll accumulate more staff, toys and furniture to adorn your mansion, giving players a glimpse into how the other half live. A totally original game idea, Playboy: The Mansion will no doubt find its way into the sweaty palms of many a would-be mogul.