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Gay-themed games Hurt Me Plenty, Succulent, and Stick Shift are now on Steam

"I believe it's important for gay games to be present and visible."

Robert Yang's gay sex-themed experimental titles Hurt Me Plenty, Succulent, and Stick Shift, have been remastered and released on Steam as the anthology Radiator 2.

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Stick Shift.

We covered Succulent and Stick Shift before. The former lets you control a man fellating a popsicle, while the latter is about a man having sex with his car. You control his hand seizing the titular stick shift. It sounds goofy - and it is - but it also contains a political message about the troubled climate between law enforcement and the LGBTQ community.

Hurt Me Plenty, meanwhile, is a game about consensually spanking a man's ass. It focuses on themes of communication, consent and S&M.

"These video games are pretty damn gay, and they're part of my semi-concerted attempt to #MakeGamesGayAgain," Yang stated in an email to Eurogamer. "I believe it's important for gay games to be present and visible on a major video game platform like Steam, to help resist and combat the very real erasure of gay people from games, society, or even erasure from the mass shootings that exclusively target gay people. It's important for people to see gay stuff on Steam and in larger game culture, because then it shows that 'we belong here' just like everyone else."

Radiator 2 is a free affair, though you can donate to Yang if you'd like. Yang noted on his latest blog post that his games have been downloaded quite a lot, with Hurt Me Plenty getting 51,958 downloads, Succulent 34,954 and Stick Shift 48,175.

They haven't raised a lot of money though, but Yang doesn't seem to mind as that was never his goal. "I'm hesitant to label any of this as a 'success' because it hasn't really led to financial independence or artistic sustainability, and I wouldn't recommend anyone copy my methods ('step 2: give away your games, don't get paid') unless they have a day job and partner with a day job," Yang explained. "I imagine some more successful game designers might scoff at these lifetime stats, but with all those caveats in mind - personally I'm humbled and thankful for the response I've managed to get."

It's not just money Yang doesn't care about; to him popularity is more of a positive side effect than an actual goal. "I don't really care whether people play these games or not (especially when I don't make any money from it) and what's more important to me is simply that they exist," Yang stated. "This is one of the primary tenets of the modern gay rights movement: that we must be visible and present, or else we will be erased. It's important that there's a gay sex game available on Steam, of all places, and that gesture is now part of the artistic meaning of this work."

If you're confused by the title of Radiator 2, it gets its namesake from Yang's online handle, Radiator, and the fact that this is his second anthology. The first, Radiator 1 (yes, the "1" was always part of the title) was described by Yang as "a standalone Source Engine mod about stargazing, gay divorce, and Emily Dickinson." You can check that out at Yang's itch.io site.

These aren't the only sex-themed satires Yang has made, as he created several other similar titles, such as Rinse & Repeat, a game about washing another man in a gym locker room. Controversially, Twitch banned streams of the game, much to Yang's chagrin.

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Succulent.

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