When I was asked if I wanted to review the BKK Cybersex Cup, I was excited and honoured. I'm a horny son of a bitch and I've fucked some weird shit in my time, so it was kind of thrilling to, a whole three years after I lost my virginity, come full circle and revisit the world of putting my penis into an inanimate object.
But then I was a bit overcome with skepticism. The sex machine in question is called the BKK Cybersex Cup which, beyond sounding like the prize at some shady Japanese porn marathon, is a fancy matte black fleshlight-type device that not only has the ability to detect your motions but also translate your thrusts and jerks into the virtual world, which you view through a bundled VR headset. Wearing the thing makes you look like a horny Voltron. The company that created it just launched an Indiegogo page, racking up almost $21,000 [€20,000] of the $50,000 [€47,000] it hopes to raise over the next month, despite a promotional video that opens with a budget James Bond sequence that ends with a secret agent type character jerk-miming alone in a dramatically lit warehouse.
Did I even want to fuck this thing? The answer was: no, not really. In fact, the only thing on my mind was what someone would see if they happened to walk into my room during the act. I mean, I don't consider myself easily embarrassed, but the sight of some pale-ass dude with his boxers down to his ankles, wanking off furiously with a plastic tube while wearing something that looks like a prop for TRON didn't sit right with me. There's also just the fact that banging a machine seemed somewhat soulless and made me feel like I belonged in a Philip K. Dick novel. At least with my own hand, there was a human element involved.
I was going into this with an open mind (although with a slightly less open dick). With the rise in popularity of devices like the Oculus Rift and Microsoft's Hololens, I imagined a virtual sex machine was going to create some full-on immersive experiences into the world of 3D porn. This is the future, right?
After taking the bus home with the box tightly wrapped in my arms in hopes that no one would recognize what I was carrying, I brought the thing into my room, plopped it down on my bed, removed the lid, and stared at it. Beneath the bubble wrap and plastic were three items: a bulky VR headset, a plastic bag with a cleaning cloth and other doodads, and a black tube that looked like the IRA and Calvin Klein collaborated on a pipe bomb.
One thing was missing: instructions. In fact, aside from a quick diagram on how to insert the phone into the headset so it doesn't pop out during a violent wank sesh, there were no directions for how to turn the device on, charge it, or install the app, which I didn't even know existed until I googled the company's website.
When I finally downloaded and installed the Android app—which (surprise) doesn't exist on the app store, I found out that this wasn't the immersive porn experience I was hoping for. Instead of jerking my gherkin to in-the-flesh porn stars, the 3D subjects of this fuck machine were Japanese hentai characters. Okay, yes, I once beat off to a sex scene in Mass Effect when I was 14—but at this point in my life, I feel like I've graduated beyond rubbing one out to huge breasted cartoons, especially considering that in this case it just screams "THIS IS NOT REAL AND YOU ARE FUCKING A MACHINE."
Add to this the fact that the headset itself is nowhere near advanced as I thought it'd be, and it's an instant bonerkill. Rather than a built-in hi-res screen like more sophisticated pieces of VR tech, the headset bundled with the Cybersex Cup has a mount for your smartphone to slide into, much like Samsung's Gear VR. My phone, an LG Stylo, kept crashing, so I had to borrow my roommate's iPhone 4. I'm unsure if the lower resolution from the smaller screen had an effect on the overall visual experience, but it ended up looking like total shit.
The app itself is a pain to use. Nothing says "countdown to orgasm" more than spending 30 minutes setting up the specifications for a sex scene. And while the game doesn't allow you to customize much, the options it does allow you to modify are pretty offensive. For example, you can change the skin colour of the girl, but you can't make her black. In fact, the closest thing you could get to black skin is a very light brown, even when choosing the skin colour of the male character. Sorry dark-skinned humans, you'll have to wait for Cybersex Cup 2.0 to get off on ridiculous cartoon scenarios.
Also the fact that the female character can only be made to wear skimpy, humiliating outfits, or stereotypical stuff associated with Japanese animes, such as school girls and lifeguards (not unsurprising, considering the variety of hentai games that focus on rape and subordination of women) was also problematic.
I chose a classroom for the backdrop (the girl was already dressed like a schoolgirl so I figured this would be appropriate), and set up the sex scene by arranging the positions in the order that made the most sense to me. I wanted to both test the capabilities of the device but not stay up all night fapping, so out of the dozens of positions available, I chose: regular blowjob, deep-throat blowjob, missionary, reverse cowgirl, and then doggy style (I know, how basic am I?).
Lying comfortably in my bed with the rig strapped firmly around my noggin, I watched as the scene loaded and the virtual girl I had created appeared with her mouth around my poorly animated penis. It's at this point I realized I hadn't actually lubed the silicone vagina lips of the sex toy, so I yanked off the headset, ran to my cupboard and grabbed a bottle of Lubriderm (it's the best thing I had on hand, OK?). I greased the machine but when I slipped the headset back on, the regular viewing angle I had before had changed to some weird shot of the ceiling. I guess the machine took my throwing off of the headset as movement from my head and re-calibrated.
It took me a minute of awkward positioning and dancing around my room with my cock hanging out before the angle reset. The only problem was that I was now in the middle of my room instead of lying down on a comfy bed. At this point, I was pretty fed up and just wanted to get this over with, so I slipped my dick inside and began the process of getting it on with my robot companion.
Despite how weird and unfamiliar this seemed, similar applications in technology are already being tested. Last year, Motherboard tried out an early prototype for sex-toy company Tenga's VR sex robot. Of course, no one actually put their penis in anything—unlike the wand that I now had around my dick, Tenga's robot merely simulated one-to-one resistance with a virtual companion, fully-clothed. The final plan is to have a robot you can actually have sex with, but that's a long way off.
Here's the thing: I have to admit that the initial plunge was amazing. If it weren't for the fact that I was gripping a sophisticated technological tube of love, I could probably mistake this for a real vagina (albeit somewhat cold and lacking muscular contractions). With that said, the tube required a lot of creativity for me to feel actually stimulated. Each jerk had to be quick, aggressive and deep to get a real feeling of satisfaction, and the actual video wasn't doing much to help. Poorly-programmed animations and loud, obviously-recorded yelps and moans made for not only an awkward experience, but also made it difficult to suspend my disbelief.
After a few minutes of this position, I thoroughly had enough. The now ridiculous speed at which the 3D girl was bobbing up and down on the virtual penis that was supposed to represent my 1-to-1 thrusts was beginning to turn me off and I felt like staying in this perpetual state of jerking any longer would leave me with carpal tunnel or cause me to go limp.
With some fumbling on my part, I was able to press one of the four buttons on the tube that allowed me to change positions to one where she was mounting the virtual me. Considering I was standing in the middle of the room beating off, however, this just seemed weird and uncomfortable. I really wanted this thing to feel good, but it just wasn't working for me. I ended up pulling the headset off and finishing with just the tube. "I'll try again tomorrow," I thought, as I capped the tube and put it away. It was midnight. I was tired and ready to sleep.
I also forgot about cleaning the fucking thing.
When I came back to it next day, the weight of my choices the night before hit me. I was incredibly afraid to see what lurked beneath the lid of this fuck tube now that I had let my jizz cultivate in it for nearly a day, and when I eventually removed the cap, the smell was truly atrocious. Apparently, fermented semen and body lotion inside a hot canister is not a good mix. The stench was so powerful I almost wanted to toss the thing in the trash and tell my editor I got robbed on the way home. But I need that Pulitzer, so I pushed through.
With one hand pinching my nose and the other holding the now-dripping plastic vagina an arm's length away, I ran to the bathroom, grabbed my favourite toothbrush (RIP), squirted some dish detergent on the bristles and began to clean away. After about 10 minutes of scrubbing and careful rinsing the inside of the vaginal canal (making sure not to flood the machine and fuck up its components), I dried it off and gave it a whiff. All clear.
Like James Bond, this thing too would have to die another day.
This time, I knew what I was doing. I set up the sequence, plugged the phone into the headset, lubed up the machine, and went to town. While slightly more comfortable, I still felt like I wasn't getting much out of it. The tube lacks any actual vibration or stimulating functions, so the most I had to play with was alternating between various angles and changing the camera position from overhead to a first-person point of view. At one point, I began dreaming about a porn video which I really liked a few years back. The thought kept me going through most of the 20 minute session, and it when it came time to bust, I made sure to actually use the big button labelled "G" to indicate to the machine that I was cumming in real life.
With speed and precision, right as I began to feel myself swell, I spam tapped the G button. In unison, both me and the computer girl came at once. Load moans echoed out from my headset and through from my apartment (my roommate, obviously not yet comfortable talking to me in person, later told me through Facebook chat that he could hear the entire thing). With the animation still going and the headset still attached to my head, I fell back onto my pillow and let out a gigantic sigh. Although there was a futuristic fuck machine on my penis and the fleeting feeling of a decent orgasm in my heart, overall I just felt lame and disgusting.
After that session, I never ended up cleaning the thing again. In fact, it's sat there capped in the corner of my room, neatly tucked away beside the headset which I sometimes take out to startle house guests with. Although the idea of fucking virtual women sounds like a concept created in heaven, I can honestly say from experience that sex technology has not come far enough along to warrant spending your money or time on. At best, you'll leave with a decent orgasm, but mostly, you'll probably just feel exhausted, frustrated, and somewhat depressed with yourself for being this desperate.
Also, you're going to probably have to sacrifice a toothbrush or two.