Playboy Releases First Video Game

Wannabes finally have a chance to digitally mingle with celebrities and sexpots at the most infamous house in North America thanks to the release of Playboy's first video game, "Playboy: The Mansion." (search)

In "The Sims"-like game, which hit stores Jan. 25, players don the pajamas of Playboy impresario Hugh Hefner (search) and are tasked with building the Playboy empire by developing contacts, keeping the bunnies happy, furnishing the mansion and, of course, throwing lavish parties.

"I've been lucky enough to see the game as it's progressed," Deanna Brooks (search), Miss May 1998, told The Associated Press recently. "It's funny because we were meeting the developers, and we were telling them what the mansion is really like."

Apparently, it's really filled with celebrities. There's a whole cast of phony, made-for-the-game VIPs. But after players invest some time and energy in building a social circle, they'll discover dozens of real-life stars such as Carmen Electra, Tom Arnold, David Copperfield, Jose Canseco and about 140 Playboy playmates from the 1960s to the present.

"I could potentially be having sex with Tom Arnold or Carmen Electra," Brooks revealed.

Yes, there's sex — at least a playful, not-too-graphic version — in the game. But not all celebs may get down and dirty. Real-life VIPs featured in the game were given the option of which Playboy mansion activities their virtual counterparts would do.

Tom Arnold's character, for example, is only programmed to play sports and smoke cigars, senior producer Eric Marcoullier told the AP last fall while finishing the game.

"I basically put that I can do anything," musician David Fagin told the AP. "I think it all depends on what the user does. If I do end up having sex with Carmen, I just hope I'm wearing a condom."

Fagin and his band The Rosenbergs have three of their songs — along with their digital selves — featured in the game. The lead vocalist and guitarist said the fusion of music and video games is a venerable force.

"We've always believed video games are the new radio," Fagin told the AP. "We are immortalized in this game."

Brooks has a different take on her digitalization: "I thought the most fabulous thing was I got to change my breast size without any messy surgery."

"Playboy: The Mansion" is rated M for mature and is available for PlayStation 2, Xbox and PC.