App Review: Google Play Is Messed Up, Like This Poor Girl's Disfigured Face

"Why don't you review more Android games?" is a question I get on a daily basis, and it's a question I never ignore. Every time I get it, the first thing I do is go to Google Play on my phone and see if there's anything new worth taking a look at.

The service doesn't feature a "New Release" section, but it does offer a selection of "Top New Paid" and "Top New Free" games, which one might assume is a gold mine of cool, clever and creative mobile games. That's where I found Strip A Teen Girl III.

There is something seriously wrong here. Google Play might not have the strict app guidelines Apple has in place for iOS devices, but there really has to be some means of moderation. With Android devices gaining traction as dedicated gaming devices, a cheaper alternative to a consoles and console games, there're a lot of young and easily offended old eyes scanning these lists, and they're seeing shit like this.

Awww, it's Monkey Boxing! And there's a version of Heads Up just for kids! And there's... oh. Come on, Timmy, maybe we should stick to your Nintendo 3DS for a bit longer. It's like having a strip club right next to an elementary school. Convenient, sure, but at what cost?

I poke fun at systems like the Ouya or Amazon's Kindle Fire for making their own branded shops rather than using Google Play, but if that's what they need to do to avoid this sort of crap, then so be it.

For those curious, Strip A Teen Girl III, the latest in Amusing Suite's Strip A Teen Girl series, features a collection of racy photos of a decidedly un-teen girl with clouds over what a purchaser might assume are her naughty bits. The "player" must rub the photo to reveal the tasteful underwear beneath the clouds.

The best part of the "game' is the fact that instead of simply placing an interactive cloud overlay on top of a single photo, each shot is actually two shots on top of one another, so you're scratching one picture to reveal another, slightly off-kilter picture beneath it.

It's actually quite amusing, in a disturbing sort of way. I wouldn't recommend paying $1.93 for it, but if the price ever drops to $1.91, look out.

So not only are we getting sexually suggestive content in the Google Play "Top Paid Games" list, we're getting hilariously bad apps somehow showing up, despite poor reviews and low download counts. This one only registers 100+ downloads. Sega's House of the Dead Overkill, the next app down on the list, has more than 1000. That doesn't make any sense.

So no, you shouldn't buy Strip a Teen Girl III. Furthermore, you might want to look into contacting Google and asking if there's anything it can do to make finding good new games on the service less of an irritating softcore porn minefield.

If You Really Want It, Find It Yourself

Genre: embarrassment Developer: Amusing Suite Platform: Android Price: $1.93


    hehehehe smut tag

    It's gonna be a ratio of recent-ness to number of downloads, I suppose. I would've thought Google already has a stipulation that the thumbnail can't be pornographic and there are age restrictions on what you can download, of course. It's in the Google Play settings, if you can't find it

    Boobs never hurt no one. *

    *(please note, boobs my have hurt someone somewhere, like giving them a bad back, or sex related injuries)

    Last edited 23/05/13 7:30 pm

    I imagine you can get crappy porny games on PC if you really want to, and yet Kotaku regularly review games for PC. There's crappy games on Steam, but Kotaku regularly review games available on Steam. I'm not understanding something here.

      I'm not sure, but I think the primary complaint isn't that the stuff is there, it's that it's jumbled up with... everything. The crappier games on Steam aren't usually going to show up on its main featured window, and it doesn't have much that's sexually explicit that I know of (probably because it doesn't have parental controls, that I know of?). What's the Play store equivalent, and is it as good? Shitty games next to OK/popular ones with no apparent rhyme or reason.

        Sure, it's a problem. But is that a logical excuse to _not_ review other games for the platform?

        (There's more criticism I can make regarding just looking at "top new paid", but that's not really important.)

          Maybe the reason not to review them is that it's harder to know when there are actually new ones out of note. Sure, there's a few hundred new ones out every bloody minute, but filtering down to somethign that isn't shovelware or a blatant copyright theft?

          Not impossible, but harder than looking at the apple store, I guess.

    As long as it's not outright child porn, the titillation doesn't offend me so much as the crappy quality and predatory pricing. I'd sooner take this "warts and all" attitude of app approval than Apple's puritanical and self-righteous 'Helen Lovejoy' model.

    I do agree that they should be able to set more active child filters and maybe even appropriate age brackets for apps.

    You'd think Google, the company synonymous for "search", would have a better way to sift through apps.

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