It all started in the late 1980s and early 1990s. But it wasn't nearly as sexy. Game makers began releasing titles with 3D polygons, giving shape to what was previously flat. By 1994, Namco released Tekken, one of the first fighters with 3D polygons. Yet that was nothing compared to what Namco did two years later.
The game was Dancing Eyes, an arcade puzzle title that had players explode the clothes off a schoolgirl, an elevator lady, a female tennis player, a flight attendant and a nurse, what looks like an Anna Miller's waitress, etc. It wasn't only undressing girls. Sometimes ladies were trapped in things, like a magician's assistant in a crate.
The way the game worked was that players controlled a monkey as it moved around on their clothes; however, some stages had things like an alien helmet or a barrel covering a cow. One thing the game was not in short supply of was underpants.
Each section that was "carved out" would fly off, leaving that area exposed (see video). Once players carved out all the sections, they'd be treated to a short scene in which they could move the camera around and zoom in.
The basic gameplay is similar to Taito's 1981 arcade title Qix, which had players fence off areas of a playing field.
While Namco billed the game as a "totally new puzzle game", Dancing Eyes is one of the many girl games that appeared in arcades after the Qix-based strip title Gals Panic stormed through arcades in 1990.
The rest of the 1990s saw increasingly explicit arcade games, with some featuring graphics with nudity, while some mahjong games have live action video footage of famous pin-ups mugging for the cameras. Nothing like being in an arcade filled with others and looking at smut!
Most of Dancing Eyes consisted of stripping clothes off of female characters, and great detail was paid to the type of underwear each lady wore. The game wasn't only about stripping (mostly, but not only). There were enemies, like pink bunnies and white mice, that chased your critter around, making it difficult to remove clothing sections.
The game never got a console release, perhaps due to its content. It was released in the days before Japan's Computer Entertainment Rating Organization, so perhaps Sony was hesitant about putting it on the PlayStation.
Last October, Sony revealed a list of games that were coming to the PlayStation 3 with Move controls. On that list was a game from Namco called "Dancing Eyes". Namco never showed any images of the game, leading to speculation about how similar it was going to be to the 1996 arcade original.
Iffy subject matter or not, the basic controls do lend themselves to the PlayStation Move in a unique and novel way. And if Namco mixed in the right about of silliness and sex, Dancing Eyes on the PS3 could've have been an interesting title.
Could have been, because even though the game's still listed on Sony's Move page, the latest reports out of Japan are that the game has been canceled.
Virtual ladies of Japan, your underpants sleep safely tonight.