|Release date(s)||April 21, 2006|
RapeLay (レイプレイ Reipurei?) is a 3D eroge video game made by Illusion, released on April 21, 2006 in Japan. Compared to Illusion's previous games, the main story is shorter, it features an improved 3D engine, and it is mainly played through mouse control. The game centers on a male character who stalks and rapes a mother and her two daughters. Three years after its initial release, the game garnered international attention and controversy for its content, and was subsequently banned in several countries.
The player can choose from a variety of sexual positions, and controls the action by making movements with the mouse or by scrolling the mouse wheel. It features a realistic sexual simulator which allows the player to grope and undress the characters on a crowded train. Later, the player may have forced intercourse with all three women at his leisure. The player has a variety of sexual positions to choose from such as woman on top, forced fellatio (irrumatio), and threesomes. RapeLay also has a nakadashi (internal ejaculation) counter, which carries a danger of pregnancy.
After completing the storyline and "breaking" the girls, there are six modes of gameplay:
- Nozoki mode, where the player watches the girl wait in the subway station, and upon saying a prayer, can blow their skirts up with the wind, exposing their underwear. After certain achievements have been made, the player has the option of removing the girl's clothing as well as inserting vibrators, but no touching is involved.
- Chikan mode is similar to Nozoki mode, except the player goes into the train with the girl and fondles them with the ability to remove their clothing.
- Two player or "2P" mode, in this option, the player can have sex with any one of the three girls. The main character is in danger of being killed under certain circumstances, but there are no level restrictions. There is also an option of different sex positions including oral sex.
- Five player or "5P" mode, where the player is restricted to one sex position, with three other males raping one girl during gang rape. The level restrictions for this mode include locations with small space.
- Shippo, also known as "3P" or "4P" mode. In this mode, the main character is able to have sex with two or three of the girls at once.
- Neko-Kappa mode is not playable, and can be only viewed in the Botuplay Extra CD. But the original idea is that Neko-Kappa mode allows the player to have one or two girls tied up in bondage.
In story mode, the player rapes the three girls in the order of Manaka, Yuuko, and Aoi. The player starts off in the train station. Upon entering the train, the main character gropes the female the main character is currently in the train with. After the main character finishes raping all three girls, the players has the option of free play scenes.
After being caught by Aoi groping a woman on a subway train, Masaya Kimura is arrested by authorities. He, however is released from prison by his father, who is an important and well known politician. On the morning of the next day, Manaka and Aoi helps their mother Yuuko find a wallet she lost around their home while talking about the incident the previous day. Unknown to them, Kimura secretly listens to their conversation while waiting outside their house. He follows Manaka, the youngest, to the subway and gropes her on the train. After getting off the train, he traps her in a public bathroom and rapes her, taking pictures of her semen-covered naked body with his cell phone. Kimura instructs Manaka to feign sickness the next day, and stay in her room.
The next day he follows Yuuko, the mother, from her house to the train station where he fondles her on the train. Kimura follows her to the city park, when Manaka calls Yuuko on her cell phone. As per his plan, Manaka tells her that she is in the bushes at the park. After Yuuko walks towards the bushes, Kimura ambushes her, ties her up, and rapes her in the park. He takes pictures of her semen-covered naked body before handing her over to his gang of helpers on the side, who detain her for him.
The third day he follows Aoi, the eldest daughter, to the train station and shows her the photo of her tied up mother. Shocked, she can only follow his orders as he gropes her on the train. After getting off the train, she asks Kimura why he is doing this, at which point she remembers he is the groper who was arrested for molesting a woman. Getting in a vehicle, he and his helpers take Aoi to a hotel which his family owns, and rapes her, again taking photos.
After having his way with Aoi, Yuuko and Manaka are taken into the room via a secret door. With all 3 captured, Kimura reveals his plans to make them his sex slaves. Of course, Yuuko tries to cover for her daughters and pleads with him to take her instead. He considers this and tells Yuuko he might spare her daughters if she can prove her worth. Yuuko gives him a very long blowjob while her two daughters watch. When Kimura seems pleased at her performance, Yuuko thinks she has won her daughters' freedom. Instead, Kimura reveals that he will never change his mind and that they are all there to stay. Yuuko breaks down in the end, Manaka breaks next, and finally Aoi as well. The game ends with the ominous title card that as a new day starts the Kiryu family horror has 'only just begun'.
The game is open-ended and there are two possible outcomes to the game where the main character dies.
- Black Ending - Kimura impregnates one of the girls and decides to keep the child. After a certain number of days afterwards, Kimura falls onto the train tracks and dies.
- Red ending - Just before breaking Aoi, the character under cowgirl position will shift onto a scene, where Aoi would take a knife and stab the character many times. The scene will shift into black, where a voice-over of Aoi can be heard.
- Masaya Kimura (鬼村 将哉 Kimura Masaya?) - The player character and main character, Masaya is a chikan who stalks and subsequently rapes the Kiryū family.
- Manaka Kiryū (桐生 愛花 Kiryū Manaka?) - Manaka is Aoi's younger sister; a girl with short black hair who wears a blue dress. The player can make her wear cat ears so she can meow and/or produce cat noises. Voiced by Natsumi Yanase (credited as "Izumi Maki").
- Aoi Kiryū (桐生 蒼 Kiryū Aoi?) - Aoi is Manaka's older sister; a brunette girl with long hair who wears a schoolgirl uniform. The player may choose to have her hair in a ponytail or down and free-flowing. The default setting for her hair is in a ponytail. Voiced by Mao Enokizu.
- Yūko Kiryū (桐生 夕子 Kiryū Yūko?) - Yūko is Manaka's and Aoi's mother; a brown-haired woman with short hair who wears a green shirt. Yūko also has the largest breasts, and optionally can wear glasses to make her produce virgin/nerd sound effects. Voiced by Akari Tomiyama (credited as "Kaori").
Reception and controversy
Critics of violent game imagery, such as British Member of Parliament Keith Vaz, have cited games involving rape as an example of why video game content needs to be more strictly regulated. RapeLay in particular had come to Vaz's attention in 2009, three years after its initial release, as being one of the rape games purchasable on Amazon.com, despite not being officially distributed nor supported outside of Japan, and he vowed to bring the issue into the British Parliament to prevent the game from being sold. Amazon subsequently removed the game from its website. Equality Now followed up on the game, urging activists to write to Illusion and Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso in protest, arguing the game breaches Japan's obligations under the 1985 Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women. In May 2009, these actions culminated in the restriction of the sale and production of RapeLay by the Ethics Organization of Computer Software (EOCS), an independent Japanese ratings organization for adult games, making the purchase of the game impossible.
The distribution of RapeLay has been banned in Australia due to a campaign run by Women's Forum Australia, under the directorship of Melinda Tankard Reist. Minister for Broadband Stephen Conroy wanted Google Australia to censor search results for downloads of the game, but this did not occur. The game is also the only one to be effectively banned in Argentina. Citing RapeLay as an example, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, in his concurring opinion vis-à-vis the case Brown v. Entertainment Merchants Association wrote, "It...appears that there is no antisocial theme too base for some in the video-game industry to exploit."
Articles in defence have also been written, many noting that rape is a lesser crime compared to murder, yet there are thousands of legal video games in which the goal is to kill enemies. Illusion's response to the controversy was one of bewilderment and a reiteration that the game passed Japanese laws and is not sold outside Japan. Illusion later removed references to the game from their website and ceased distribution of the game, citing concerns over the impact on the industry.
- "bunnygirl's RapeLay FAQ". JSEMTS. Retrieved 2008-04-09.[dead link]
- "feuerdrache's Compilation RapeLay Walkthru Collection Final 100%". JSEMTS. Retrieved 2008-04-09.[dead link]
- "RapeLay Strategy Page (レイプレイ 攻略ページ)" (in Japanese). Illusion Soft. Archived from the original on 2009-04-20. Retrieved 2012-01-31.
- Arendt, Susan (2008-03-03). "UK Politician Claims Games Feature Virtual Rape". Wired. Retrieved 2008-03-25.
- Fennelly, Gary. "Exclusive: Amazon selling rape simulation game". Belfast Telegraph. Retrieved 2009-02-12.
- "Japan software firm shrugs off rape game protests". Yahoo! Tech. Retrieved 2009-05-28. (Archive)
- "Party sets up a team to strengthen restriction on sexual violence games (性暴力ゲーム規制強化へ、与党が流通歯止め検討チーム)" (in Japanese). Yomiuri Shimbun. Archived from the original on 2009-05-30. Retrieved 2011-11-06.
- Tankard Reist, Melinda, 2009. Getting Real: Challenging the Sexualisation of Girls, p27.
- AFP (2010-04-18). "Prohíben el videojuego 'Rapelay' en Argentina por apología de delitos sexuales" (in Spanish). Google News.[dead link]
- Federico Gracia (2010-04-19). "Rapelay: el videojuego en el que hay que violar" (in Spanish). RedUsers.
- "Incautan 27 juegos Rapelay cuya venta está prohibida" (in Spanish). NotiExpress. 2010-04-22.
- "Videojuego que simula violación fue prohibido en Argentina" (in Spanish). Nacion.cl. 2010-04-19.[dead link]
- Brown v. Entertainment Merchants Association (2011)
- Thomsen, Mike (2009-05-01). "A Brief History of Videogame Controversy". IGN. Retrieved 2015-01-02.
- "Announcement from Illusion (ILLUSIONからのお知らせです)" (in Japanese). Illusion Soft. Archived from the original on 2009-05-29. Retrieved 2012-01-13.