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The Call Girl Character Class 108

Posted by Zonk
from the insert-joke-about-grinding-levels-here dept.
An anonymous reader writes "And you thought stuff like WoW was addictive before? 1UP has posted a story from CGW about the new character class in MMOs: call girl. They interviewed girls who make up to thousands of dollars a week as escorts in the MMO Second Life. The article even sheds light on virtual pimps and a gentleman's club that takes a cut of the action. Said one of the escorts interviewed, 'Based on my personal convictions, which most people would find beyond offensive, I do not set boundaries in Second Life. I'll do anything, and I'll probably do it better than the client expects.'"
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The Call Girl Character Class

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  • by Tackhead (54550) on Monday April 10, 2006 @01:16PM (#15099647)
    > I'll do anything, and I'll probably do it better than the client expects

    Aight. I put on my robe and wizard hat. [adamchance.com]

    "Hard like a rhino..."
    - Vanilla Ice

  • The video game industry and the world's oldest profession are caught in the virtual bedsheets! News at 11!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 10, 2006 @01:22PM (#15099691)
    Will the call girl class cry after the first time they level up?
    • Nah, they've built up their "experience points" first. Over the course of their careers, they'll probably put most of their attributes into Stamina and Dexterity, while reducing their clientele's Speed and Accuracy.

      Solomon
  • geez (Score:4, Insightful)

    by panic911 (224370) * on Monday April 10, 2006 @01:24PM (#15099702) Homepage
    virtual money for a virtual "escort"... kids these days. pimps and hookers can use this to hone their skills before going out and doing the real thing
    • Second Life money can be converted to real money, actually. Why do you think everything costs so much on there?
    • virtual money for a virtual "escort"... kids these days. pimps and hookers can use this to hone their skills before going out and doing the real thing

      But the way these MMO games have been going, won't it soon be real money, to buy virtual money to then pay for virtual sex which the people will then be able to exchange for real money?

      How long before people start getting rolled/ripped off by virtual hookers, but actaully losing real money?

      Could you then get arrested for virtual solicitation? (of a virtual m

      • Re:geez (Score:4, Informative)

        by AuMatar (183847) on Monday April 10, 2006 @02:02PM (#15099923)
        Second Life has a fixed real world to Linden dollars exchange rate. Linden Labs will sell you dollars at any time, or cash them in at any time. So its *already* real money.
        • by jandrese (485)
          It's not fixed though, and it's not LL buying and selling. What happens is if you want to get more in-game money, you go to an index, where the current price of Lindons to USD is listed. You then buy as many as you like at whatever the current price is.

          The trick is on the supply side: All of the Linden Dollars listed there are in fact being sold by other players. Players can try to see their Lindens for whatever they think someone will buy them for, but by default the game always buys the cheapest one
          • There are also third-party sites that do currency exchange (including in-game ATMs - object scripts can communicate with external services). The fee for the LL Currency Exchange is US$0.30 plus 3.5%.

  • It's only a matter of time before you have virtual crackwhores whose avatars stumble into your pad, and after they give sex for money, they ask if you want to try a hot new drug called "snow crash". (If you are in the 0.001% of Slashdot users who don't get the joke because you haven't read Neal Stephenson's [amazon.com] , you don't know what you've been missing).
    • If you are in the 0.001% of Slashdot users who don't get the joke because you haven't read Neal Stephenson's [amazon.com] , you don't know what you've been missing

      [amazon.com]? No, I haven't read that one. Snow Crash is pretty good, though. :)
    • You know...before you mentioned Snowcrash I thought you were speaking from a previous bad experience!

    • by loqi (754476)
      Snow Crash was awful.
      • I agree (Score:1, Troll)

        by shadow_slicer (607649)
        It was pretty bad.
      • by GeekyMike (575177) on Monday April 10, 2006 @04:20PM (#15100931)
        Maybe you will change your mind after listening to Reason :-)
      • I have never understood why this book garners so much acclaim from the geek crowd.

        I did hear one guy talk about reading it three or four times and discovering "depth" in it. Come on! You should not have to read a book 3-4 times before you discover depth in it. It just wasn't that good.

        • "You should not have to read a book 3-4 times before you discover depth in it. "

          I completely disagree. I think you should be able to read a truly great book as many times as you want; each time interpreting the book entirely differently due to the influence of the previous readings on you. A book that you can read twice is good, a book that you can read three times is better, but a book that works on many many levels, that changes the reader's very self is better still.

          I thought Snow Crash was an amazing
          • ...a book that you can read three times is better, but a book that works on many many levels....

            My original comment was not clear enough; my impression was that the fellow, of whom I spoke, did not find depth in the book until he had read it three or four times. It is like he made it his mission to find something worthwhile in the book...because it had garnered so much attention from the geek crowd; eventually he discovered what he was looking for (or convinced himself that it was there). I guess I just

        • "Good" compared to what?

          It's easy enough to pick the holes in LotR or Neuromancer. The difference is that they were the first of their kind. Snow Crash was revolutionary in getting away from the tired old cyberpunk schtick that had been filling the shelves for the previous decade or so. It also had a view of a future society which was truly new, whilst still being rooted in how the US runs today, and that takes some doing.

          It wasn't intended to be a deep insightful arthouse novel with all that multi-layer
        • Well ... I read it back in 94 ... when I was all of 12. I think it was pretty impressive stuff for a world that had yet to see a net explosion, among other things.

          I loved it back then, I still think fairly highly of it now. His other writings are even better ...
  • by denjin (115496)
    Somehow I misread that as the "tall girl character class" and thought it suited me. However, call girl...I think not.

    So, the people who pay these call girls, how do they even know they're girls? I'm guessing the don't care. The article says these call girls make $5000+ a week sometimes, all virtual - crazy.
    • I'm assuming the author didn't mean all were female per se, but was going for as nonoffensive a term to describe the players profession as possible not caring that some are male.
    • by booch (4157)
      I'm glad I'm not the only one who read it that way. On second thought, I'm kind of glad my mind is more interested in tall girls than call girls.
    • by Miraba (846588)
      If you RTFA, you'd see that some of them are verified through voice chats. Also, it's the clubs/houses/pimps who take in the real cash; the girls make less than the US minimum wage.
      • by jandrese (485)
        It seems weird to need a pimp in SL though. Anybody can be a landowner and there's nothing another player can do to you worse than making you return home or send you up into the stratosphere (forcing you to return home).

        Granted, advertising isn't easy in SL, but if a group of them are getting ripped off by virtual pimps, it would be trivial for them to just leave and start their own place.
    • Re:Hmm (Score:2, Informative)

      by Nilych (959204)
      This article uses the in-game currency/real-world currency while RARELY being explicit about which one is being used. I guess it incites the reaction it obviously got - Holy Crap, They're making a considerable amount of money! Except that it's $5,000 in-game currency. Which, according to the exchange rate, comes out to $18.12.
      • Math (Score:2, Informative)

        by jacem (665870)
        18.20 lets say that is for a 30 minute session. travel time 0.
        18.20 time 2 is 36.40 an hour. Lets figure on a 40 hour week or about 2080 hours per year. That's $75.712.00 The more you work the more you make.
        I also don't know what the exchange rates and fees are. I also don't know if there is taxes involved. (income tax for one.) These girls are making a little less than strippers but have 0 physical risk.

        Just some math

        JACEM
        • Guess I made a similar mistake the article made - I didn't list time frame. The number was $5000 in-game currency a week. Admittedly, that $18.12 USD isn't miserable - that pays your costs to continue playing the game (standard MMO monthly fee being about $15 USD), but that's hardly livable. Given one of them said she made at minimum L$1000 (in-game currency) per 30-min 'trick', that comes out to about $3.62 USD, so $7.25 USD per hour. I've worked jobs that paid less, and required much more work than si
          • by jacem (665870)
            The girl before her in the articale said L$ 1000.00 minimum per trick, she implied more. I think that is where my confusion came from as well. I don't know the exchange off of my head.

            I also relized that I did not take into account the 20% that the club keeps and the 3.8% the SL keeps.

            I want to oun one of these clubs!

            later

            JACEM
    • by jacem (665870)
      In the articale one of the girls talked about a veting organization called varified girl.

      JACEM
  • The one thing I am not getting is why SL is such a great medium for this, as it seems that even though you can add sexy new models and stuff, there will be no real interactive animations or anything actually controllable beyond the most basic stuff (walking around, sitting, etc). So how does this equate into a non-laughable cybersex medium? I personally find the idea of cybersex to be hilarious and in the end, something of a self-parody, so how is this any different from your average #TeenChat cybersex sess
    • by A Cheese Danish (576077) <nala.galatea@gm a i l.com> on Monday April 10, 2006 @01:44PM (#15099806) Homepage Journal
      Actually, Second Life nowadays allows for user-uploaded animations. Most anything that is stored as a .bvh file can be uploaded as an animation for your avatar to do.

      Some people make sets of animations that allow for almost every possible sexual position with almost as many partners as you want at one time. Some are even advanced enough to where you can sit on an animation object and switch between animations from a menu select system.

      If pixel-slapping is your thing, then SL is probably one of the only "on-the-market" products that lets you have the freedom to do these things, among others.
      • by tricorn (199664) <sep@shout.net> on Monday April 10, 2006 @03:46PM (#15100657) Journal

        Specifically, your avatar can have the current animation be set and changed by an object, either by giving that object permission, or by sitting on it. A standard way of doing such things is to have "pose balls" or similar (e.g. a "sit" on a couch, or a bed, and it then gets to animate you). There are lots of combo pose balls where one person "sits" on one, the other on the other, and it puts both avatars into a posed position, typically sexual.

        Since objects can also communicate, and can be controlled by a player (under control of a script), this allows for as complex interaction between two avatars as you can think of. Either or both can select how they want to act or respond, and a script can select the appropriate synchronized animations to do the appropriate interaction.

        ALL avatar motion is controlled by such animations, such as normal sitting, standing, flying, jumping, walking, running, falling. You can also trigger animations on yourself, it isn't only through objects. Besides animations, you can also trigger sounds (which can also be uploaded).

        Combined with the ability to upload skin details and attach objects to your body (and said objects can now move as well, e.g. twitching tails, flapping wings), and reshape body details (male or female), the possibilities seem fairly unbounded. Certainly for someone who gets off on phone sex, something like this can add a whole new element.

        There also seems to be a big market in selling skins, pose balls, animations and sounds to implement all of this, i.e. the support structure behind the sex trade. Gambling also seems to be big in SL; think of it, you could script a slot machine that allowed anyone to copy it, they run it, and it automatically gives you (the programmer) a cut of the action, without even having to put up any money (and payouts come out of the account of the person who is running the machine, not you). You can do that without needing to actually pay ANY real money, just with the basic free account, and if your slot machine becomes popular, you'll start getting game money rolling in, which you can then trade for real money.

    • The question really should be: What out there is better than SL? Obviously there is a market for Cybersex, and if you can create your own virtual enviornment for both partners to share (instead of the somewhat singular experiance of imagining what is going on from an IRC cybering session), then it seems great.

      Granted, it looks pretty dumb most of the time, but even the somewhat dumb looks are better than absolutely text only experiances in IRC, at least to some people. SL is far from perfect, but thu
      • Obviously there is a market for Cybersex

        Yeah, but who guarantees that D34dly's cyber-girlfriend [nyud.net] is a girl in real life?
        • Does it really matter? It's not like these people are trying to set up some sort of lasting relationship here. It's not the sort of environment I think I'd want to try to meet people in anyway. This is more like online one-night-stands, only a fair bit safer and less messy but not quite as fun.

          It's not like having cybersex with a girl who, as it turns out, is actually a guy is going to turn you gay or something.
      • Why am I seeing a market for a very strange USB device that advertises itself as dishwasher safe.

        JACEM
    • One word: Furries [wikipedia.org]

      -Grey [wellingtongrey.net]
  • Soon enough some kid will start hookin' and blame it on this - and Jack Thompson will rear his ugly head.
  • MMTDs? (Score:4, Funny)

    by Samurai Cat! (15315) on Monday April 10, 2006 @01:41PM (#15099788) Homepage
    (Massive-Multiplayer Transmitted Disease)

    With virtual hookers, at least it's only your *computer* that'll get a virus...
  • At least SL is true to its name.... second...life.

    would you expect anything else from a game mimicking real life ?

    Although I find it strange and wouldnt use that service, I have to admit if those people find satisfaction using those services, so be it, good for them. ...i prefer my inflatable doll :)
  • by Universal Nerd (579391) on Monday April 10, 2006 @01:51PM (#15099844)
    I read the article last friday and was shocked because it wasn't a joke!

    I've recently started playing an MMORPG that's very roleplay-oriented and I have a lot of fun interacting with all the different stories each character has but I find that some folks take the game WAY to seriously. I don't know, I'm firmly and happily planted in the real world and I escape to the virtual one for a bit of entertaining psychodrama at the price of a few hours of my nights.

    I'd love to whip out the old cliche "it's just a game" but it would be an oversimplification of the situation but the article shoots the argument down.

    There are folks that participate in online gaming as a means of escape - life is hell and they want another chance elsewhere and they live these lives online.

    Boy, psychiatrists and psycologists are making a fortune these days!
    • What's life anyway but a big game? Some play to get rich, some play to get happy, some play to get famous, some play just to play.

      How is it weird some people prefer to fill their daily gaming with role playing games? It's not escaping, it's just a different type of a game.

      If MMO players get what they're searching for from MMO games, sounds like a great deal to me. Probably saves a lot on the shrink bills too.
      • I see your point but I cannot agree with it.

        Real life is real and it is not a game based on chance.
        The RPG genre (of which MMOs are the newest incarnations) are not real and they are a game based on chance.

        A few crude examples:
        - When you drive to work every day do you roll a d% to see if you make it there alive?
        - When you eat a sandwich, do you roll a fortitude save to not get poisoned?
        - Do you buy tons of flour, yeast, sugar and salt to grind your way to making a perfect roast? (I loved that cartoon, wish
        • While the odds may be much higher or lower than a d6 roll how much of life is chance? There is a small risk that you will not make it to work on your trip (else insurance would be free). How did you hear about your last job? Did you scour every listing service, (newspaper, monster, or did you have a friend of a friend or someone grab your resume off your web page)? How did you meet your last significant other? My last was a planned introduction by a mutal friend, but the one before that was a girl who w
        • - When you drive to work every day do you roll a d% to see if you make it there alive?
          No, the rolling of the d6 is part of the action.

          - When you eat a sandwich, do you roll a fortitude save to not get poisoned?
          Again, the die roll is part of the action if you eat a sandwich you found on the street. Though most people avoid the die roll by making it from their own raw materials, hunted from the shop.

          - Do you buy tons of flour, yeast, sugar and salt to grind your way to making a perfect roast?
          Yes, if t

  • by Asmor (775910) on Monday April 10, 2006 @02:53PM (#15100252) Homepage
    MMOrgy [mmorgy.com] is a blog specializing in the naughtier side of MMOs.
  • by SmallFurryCreature (593017) on Monday April 10, 2006 @03:00PM (#15100303) Journal
    Oh sure you can bemoan about how one could possibly find pixels arousing or how this gives the industry a bad name but in the meantime Second Life is one of the few ROLE playing games out there.

    Not level grinding games like WoW or Everquest.

    An MMORPG is not like a single player RPG. You will never be the farm boy/girl who saves the kingdom and marries the princess. You can't be the hero in an epic story that changes the fate of an entire continent.

    An MMORPG is instead about living a live in an alternate universe.

    Those who complain that some people are using Second Live to escape their real live are idiots.

    Because of cause that is why people play games especially computer games. You don't think Michael Schumacher plays F1 games do you? WW2 veterans do not play Medal of Honor (or if they do find it boring and unrealistic to the extreme) and so on. People with exciting lives do not watch TV and do not play games. That is something for the rest of us to do. TV/Computers games, the opium of the masses.

    An MMORPG is a second live for escaping your normal live. How deep and in what way depends on the person. To some just "levelling" up, raiding dungeons and looting stuff is all they want.

    Others want more but it is a rare game that gives them the possibilty.

    I played Star Wars Galaxies (Before combat upgrade made me leave) and later Everquest 2 (anyone feeling the need to recommend other MMORPG's please check wether they can be paid without a credit card first) and after that Guild Wars.

    The last two don't hold a candle in respects to "role" playing.

    I probably don't mean the same thing with roleplaying as most people. I am not talking about those people that roleplay a scout or a wizard in Everquest. Or those that roleplay rebel scum or a imperial scriptkiddie. (Oh be honest, have you ever met a mature imperial?)

    No, I mean those who went beyond the title of their character sheet and roleplayed a trader or a explorer or a outfitter.

    I played a trader, I liked exploring the planets and this often led me to unvisited shops wich usually had some stock going unsold. Easy to buy it and then resell it at hotspots for a slight margin. Food and drinks (buffs in swg) were espcially good. Few players had the dedication to prepare by stocking up before a mission so typical SWG fare was.

    Player1: "All ready to go to the most lethal planet in the galaxy to go hunt the most lethal critter known?"

    Player2: "Yeah yeah yeah lets go already enough time delaying"

    Player1: "Okay we arrived, lets move out to the first lair"

    Player2: "Give me some brandy I ran out"

    Player1 + 3-9: "we are all on our last bottle too"

    Cue my little character stocking the bazaars at the out of the way destinations with quality, pricey but quality brandy. Oh and in 1 bottle portions so as not to overtax those who spend all their money on a overpriced weapon.

    It was in a way a lot of fun. Others I knew got a kick out of constantly checking what resources were being dropped. One guy seemed to be very good at finding players for missions. If you were missing a doc or a bio engineer etc for a raid, he could find someone willing to join.

    In short the game allowed you to play more then just the "hero" prototypes.

    If you ever wonder why SWG fans bemoan the New Game Experience it is because they removed the freedoms to play those other characters.

    SWG was a girl heavy game with a lot of them having a sideline in dressmaking. I was better dressed in game then in real life.

    So to me, hookers and pimps and johns in a MMO game doesn't sound bad at all. Not because of the sex but because these people found a way to play the game wich goes beyond what is in the manual.

    Anyway it is nothing new. The sims online had an article about an underaged hooker.

    A good MMORPG will be more then just grinding levels and raiding dungeons. Not that there is anything wrong with that but DDO to be fair can be seen as nothing mo

    • So to me, hookers and pimps and johns in a MMO game doesn't sound bad at all. Not because of the sex but because these people found a way to play the game wich goes beyond what is in the manual.

      It's not quite as exciting as all that. When there's not a manual, and there's the ability to customise your appearance and animations almost infinitely (sticking to a humanoid theme), sex will emerge. Just like real life, tbh.
    • Not trying to flame, but I don't see a huge difference between your trader character in SWG and someone that plays the buy low sell high economic game in other MMOs.
      In the case of EQ2 at least there are plenty of players who's primary role is crafting and selling.
      • What you mean is people who buy all products from the bazaar and then relist them at a higher price. That is generally considered a bad thing although it is very common in the real world. I think it is called "speculating" or something.

        That is not what I did. I bought bulk from out of the way places then distributed them to key spot and sold them in small portions.

        So I provided two services. I helped people avoid having to buy 20 of something wich they could not afford. AND I put it in locations they were

    • You don't think Michael Schumacher plays F1 games do you?


      My brother is a professional basketball player. The game he spends most time playing by a long shot is NBA 2k6. I know you'd think that after a day of *real* F1, Schumacher might not want to sit down to some virtual driving, but he's an F1 driver because it's an interest of his and I'd bet that he'd also find it interesting playing F1 games.
    • Actually F1 drivers -- and most racers -- *do* play racing games. They help them learn the track layouts.

      I was actually pretty surprised to hear this; I never would have thought that racing games were that close to real tracks, but I believe Carl Edwards said that he played EA's NASCAR game to learn breaking points at Pocono (which he won the first time he raced there). I guess the sims can be pretty realistic in that respect, not unlike a flight sim giving real pilots some good info.

      Some, especially at

    • TV/Computers games, the opium of the masses.

      You know how there's a certain amount of disdain for people who watch TV all day, or fill their evenings from 6-11pm with the nightly news and dramas? People who waste their lives away with MMOs get the same thing. Cut back on the gaming, and work to make real life more exciting and rewarding. I'm not talking about people who can play for two hours and then go do something else. I mean those who are substituting WoW or Second Life for real life.
  • I wonder how long it will take before the third world cheap labor comes into this market? It sounds more profitable than killing orcs. Maybe the required Engish skiills would be too tough though.
  • by cant_get_a_good_nick (172131) on Monday April 10, 2006 @03:12PM (#15100392)
    The MPAA rates much harder on sexual situations than violent ones. Can have hundreds of people killed, still get PG-13, but get a couple too many boobies showing, rated R. Male nudity, pretty much Adults Only, or release unrated. The theory i've heard is "people know the violence is fake, but the sex can be more easily confused with real life, therefore influencing unwanted behavior". Lets say we pretend this is true, there's something about a bare breast that makes people unable to see that it's a construction on not reality, where do virtual worlds fit in? We've already seen the uproar with Hot Coffee and GTA. Here you're in the same environment (so no confusion reality vs. game), seeing a highly pixellated "woman" and that's immoral. But the violence in the game gets a rating sticker and is ok.

    Not asking for an answer, just confused...
    • by renoX (11677)
      Note that this behaviour is pretty much specific to the USA: in France we tend to have the opposite: nudity is ok, violence is not.
      Which I find quite logical (but I'm French).

      I suspect that the USA are like this due to religion (blech).
  • grep '[callgirl]*' /usr/share/phonebook

    I wonder what exactly this is supposed to match, or why it is so interesting.

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