Usually, dating games offer some kind of soft introduction: you’re a high school kid, or a sexy divorced dad, or a bird-caterpillar hybrid looking for love. In browser game Fuck Everything, you are thrown, in media res, into a bar populated by a strange cast of characters, with your only instruction being the title of the game itself. You can take any one of these characters home with you (or into the back alley, if that’s what you’re into) for sex.
This post contains NSFW words and imagery.
In the background, a song by Eminem I never knew existed plays, in which he sings about shoving a gerbil up his ass. It’s strange, but by the fourth or fifth time I return to the bar, it’s grown on me. With the exception of this song, “Fack,” the game is entirely rapped by the game’s creator Lena NW’s musical alter-ego, Fellatia Geisha. The explicit lyrics about herpes, anal sex, and tampons would make just about anyone blush.
But the point of Fuck Everything isn’t the music. The point, if the title didn’t give it away, is to fuck. Everything. It is, simultaneously, a celebration of gender and sexual fluidity and a harsh criticism of hyper-masculine rape culture.
The game takes place in a bar, where a small rabble of miscellaneous creatures are drinking. You play as a human or cat-person, either male or female, who comes into the bar and decides to chat someone up. This is achieved by choosing one of the characters and engaging in dialogue with them, with several dialogue choices that will either impress them or put them off completely. Impress them enough, and they’ll ask if you want to go somewhere a little more… private. Sometimes this also requires careful navigation of dialogue options, and sometimes it’s little more than clicking on a big button that says “FUCK.”
A lot of these choices end badly. A cute purple-haired girl bit my cat-penis off. The super-anime barmaid pulled me into a vortex, where she turned into a tentacle monster. The blood-lava man (who I was actually kinda into) accidentally immolated me on the way back to his home planet. I have no idea what happens with J-Star, the popped-collar douchebro, because he forces me to do an elaborate Simon-esque memory dance sequence that I suck at. When I fail, I am kicked back to the bar. When I die, the game asks if you want to try again. There’s no real penalty other than having to start again, which often gives you a different character to play as and a different intro about who you are.
“It’s riffing on that hyper-masculine attitude ‘I don’t care what this girl has to say, or who she is, I just want to fuck!’,” Lena NW said in an interview with Dazed, referring to the game’s lack of choices and good endings. “It doesn’t matter who you are; the game already knows what it is going to do to you and has already started to determine your fate.” Fuck Everything doesn’t care what you want; encounters end a certain way regardless of which dialogue options you choose. It’s the opposite of most dating or sex games, which put the power in the player’s hands and make every character an option. Here, every character (and bar stool) is an option, but you’re the prey.
Fuck Everything feels like a product of its time, or more precisely, the 20 years preceding its time, the era in which the creator grew up. It’s rough around the edges, the kind of feverish collage you’d make of your favorite bands on your Geocities website. The game is full of glittery text and multimedia mash-ups, gifs layered on top of gifs, with custom cursors, dead-eyed dress-up dolls and music that reminds me of that auto-playing audio clip on your friend’s Myspace page that you could never find the pause button for.
The game and its myriad of inspirations form a bizarre, warped version of the early 00s on the internet, or what Lena NW in the Dazed interview calls “a declaration of apathy and nihilism from a generation that has seen it all.”
That generational apathy is what makes this game so fascinating. At one point, an iconic image from internet shock site 4chan, Goatse, flashes on the screen. When I first heard of Goatse, years ago, I was horrified, but these days, a drawing of a man’s gaping asshole is relatively tame. I didn’t ask to become this desensitized to gore and violence, but one of the drawbacks of having access to everything is… well, having access to everything.
In an age where we consume media, memes, and pop culture every single day, games like Fuck Everything can exist: a game that rests on weird references like a stool rests on legs. It’s a mutated version of our preteen selves on the internet, where My Little Pony and emo selfies have been replaced by full-frontal nudity, surreal sex scenes and over-the-top graphic raps that Lena NW describes as purposefully “hyper-misogynist.”
Fuck Everything is a lot to take in. It’s the sexy nightmare of a kid on Livejournal. It’s fanfiction from an over-stimulated teenage girl having cyber-sex on Habbo Hotel. It’s the scrawled doodles of a creator who wants more, from life, society and sex. It’s apathetic, attention-seeking, and profoundly millennial.