Friday, March 1, 2024
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Getting Horny with Blood Pact

I’ve been writing about video games for a little over four years now, and since then I’ve only gotten hornier. This is in no small part thanks to an explosion of erotic games made by and for trans women in the past six months alone. First came Hardcoded, a cyberpunk visual novel about a trans android and her newfound friends that she screws a lot in a multitude of obscene and filthy ways, and continues with Blood Pact, a Twine game by trans sex columnist Ana Valens (@acvalens) and Postcard Paradise artist Callie G (@chuuurls).

Blood Pact follows Alexa, a student and university librarian, as she accidentally awakens a trans succubus named Felanya with whom she enters into a D/s relationship. There’s girl dick, there’s domination, and yes, there are even demonic tentacles, and it all serves many of the kinks and fetishes that horny sapphic trans women seem to quite commonly share.

Mechanically, it’s a pretty standard visual novel. You navigate through its pages and can save at any point if you need to return later, and there’s an assortment of artworks varying in erotic intensity that accompany every eight or so pages. Where Blood Pact shines is in its descriptiveness. Valens is a master when it comes to using just the right words to evoke arousal, and while there aren’t a huge amount of illustrations from Callie, each is equally as sexy as their perfectly-paired script, something reflective of the duo’s collaboration on prior projects like the chapbook Bell.

There are a lot of things I love about Blood Pact. The first part is currently available on itch.io, and in its introductory pages, we see not only an earnest and unashamed exploration of trans sexuality, but also an incredibly informative discussion about the dynamics of BDSM relationships. Let’s talk about those two things.

I’ve discussed this previously regarding Hardcoded, but rarely do we see mainstream media depictions of trans women being sexual without it either being through a fetishistic gaze or through a bigoted lens that sees us as predatory beings. Again, much like Hardcoded, the reason that Blood Pact’s portrayal of trans women being horny doesn’t fall under either of these categories is that it was made by a trans person.

Blood Pact sexualises the trans bodies of its characters, but it comes from a place of empowerment and self-love, rather than from fetishisation. In fact, the kinks that it features throughout its first chapter really reinforce that fact. At least from what I’ve seen of horny trans Twitter (and I’ve seen a lot of it) tentacles, succubi, bondage, and especially the almost hypnotic nature of Felanya’s pheromones are all reflective of popular interest and sexual desire when it comes to what gets us trans gals off.

What we also see within the confines of its delectable pages is BDSM discussed in a healthy way. Blood Pact doesn’t shy away from the ambiguity of just how its two main characters came to enter a relationship. Alexa questions it outright, in fact, and this leads into a conversation about consent, boundaries, and so on. Perhaps the most important thing Blood Pact gives us, though, is aftercare.

Rarely, in the porn that we watch and the mainstream depictions of BDSM relationships in the media that we consume, do we see the cuddling and the reassuring words that are absolutely paramount after all of the dirty kinky stuff. Kink scenes can leave submissives and dominants alike exhausted, both physically and mentally, and aftercare is important to bring participants out of that space and back into reality without a sudden shock or a plummeting of emotional wellbeing. Blood Pact gives us that, and it’s so important for people new to kink and new to relationship dynamics like this to know that this is how it should be.

So, Blood Pact is a few things. It’s more positive trans representation in a way that we don’t see a lot of, and it’s a great look at BDSM which communicates some important aspects of how it works in a healthy way. The fact that it’s one of just two works of media I can think of in my head that explores this subject is a crying shame, but that they both emerged within six months of each other, when for years before this we hadn’t seen much at all, does make me feel a bit hopeful. Perhaps this is a sign of things to come; and if that’s the case, I’m ready to get horny all over again.

Blood Pact is available now on Itch.io.

Astrid Johnson

[She/They] Astrid is a journalist who has an equally begrudging interest in both video games and politics. Subjects of interest include labour rights in the games industry, really weird and artsy indie titles, and adding "but Communism" to the ends of game titles as a means of coming up with ideas for what to write about.