It was true—the creepiest thing about all of this wasn't even the robot handjob, but the melancholic submissiveness of the avatar they'd rendered.I felt empathy with the character, but not the kind I was probably intended to. In terms of function, it was pretty accurate; the robotic sex arm synched up with the virtual sex arm on screen."He made it in two days," Sato said, referring to Illusion's developer, Naoyuki Ootsuru, who had come along, and who also presented us with an enthusiastic demonstration of the technology. "I think that there's a taboo with male masturbation," Sato said.

He'd come by the Motherboard office to demonstrate the "future of masturbation," as he put it. As soon as we sat down, he encouraged to put my head into a pair of VR goggles, where a female avatar was bent over the side of the bed and a rendering of Tenga's sex tube protruding from the screen where the er, gun would typically be in a first person shooter.

My instincts immediately told me to tear the glasses off my head; I peeled them off and looked around.

"We are going to abstain from supporting any elements of the adult industry," he told me, unequivocally.

"We're not here to promote or encourage any application associated with the adult entertainment industry." Still, the brief encounter with Tenga's wiry gadget was enough to see a glimpse of the future of onanism; solitary immersion into a responsive, pixelated fantasia.

"The Falcon's sensors can keep track of the handle's position to sub-millimeter resolution, and the motors are updated 1000 times per second (1 k Hz), giving a realistic sense of touch.

The surfaces of virtual objects feel solid, and can have detailed textures applied to them. Tenga is a Japanese manufacturer of disposable male sex toys—they make cylindrical "masturbation aids" that somehow don't seem as repulsive as the Fleshlight (perhaps mostly because they're not called a fleshlight).At a tech conference last fall, Tenga unveiled a crude contraption that allowed volunteers to participate in a simulation wherein they received sexual favors from an anime character through virtual reality goggles.Tenga is trying to give "detailed textures" new meaning.The company rigged its masturbation aid so that it's held in place by the Falcon's claw, then programmed software to respond to the sex simulation onscreen. No, I didn't actually try the contraption the way it was intended to be used.Ootsuru says he wants to promote it as an outlet for the disabled.