View Full Version : Violence in Games
February 20th, 2003, 02:46 PM
If anyone has read the paper or watched the news lately, you have probably heard something about some guy who commited suicide over a game (true story, some guy had severe problems with coping outside of Everquest), or how video games increase violent tendencies and desensitize gamers to violence, killing, rape, and other things (cough GTA cough). Senators and such want to pass laws that would change content and stuff that could hurt the game industry. Anyone else have a problem with stuff like this, and the media's perception of people who play games?
February 20th, 2003, 03:51 PM
TV or films or even music are often blamed as "bad influences" which are said to encourage violence in society etc. It's all a crock IMO.
There are some more graphically violent games around these days that carry age related content warnings like 15 and 18 ratings, but to blame them for soical violence is ridiculous.
If everyone was at home playing Hitman or GTA, no one would be on the street inflicting real violence on each other. We can all (hopefully) tell the difference between reality and fantasy.
Plus I don't beleive that TV or video game violence de-sensitises us to real violence as if anyone's ever seen real violence, it can be quite a shocking and disturbing experience.
It's a typical knee-jerk, scape-goat reaction by authorities grasping at straws.
February 20th, 2003, 05:00 PM
as kahn said- it's hypocritical applying arguments to games but not tv or films (then again, tv and film in its infancy did have the same problems)
February 20th, 2003, 05:10 PM
Someone who kills themself and played video games had some major problems and excessive play was the least of them. I have played violent games all my life and I am among the least violent of people, I haven't been in a fight since I was five and as for dessensitized well, I cringe whenever a dog crosses the road in fear it will get squashed. Perhaps these senators should look more at the athletic community where violence is often necessary and quite often happens outside the games as well.
February 20th, 2003, 05:11 PM
Remember, these are the same people that banned books for having 'suggestive themes' or 'inappropriate racial connotations' DESPITE the fact that there was nothing wrong with those ideas when the book was written.
I agree that it IS a knee jerk reaction and unfortunately like my example above, I think that somebody WILL manage to pass a law regarding regulations. Right now, the ratings on games are strictly voluntary. At one point movie ratings were voluntary but now they aren't. As for the guy that said he couldn't cope without Everquest, I can honestly say that I can understand a little bit. Sometimes it is hard to distance oneself from an MMORPG style game. After all, you ARE dealing with other people and that can lead to emotional ties that may or may not be real.
I don't see anybody overreacting to Paintball and that game can lead to more violence than a video game. In a video game you're shooting pictures. In paintball, you're shooting people.
February 20th, 2003, 07:48 PM
It's a simple problem - people don't want to take responsibility for their own actions. I've seen on the bullsh*t on TV or on the web about games or music or movies or &$%# aliens are causing problems. If I read about one more parent or group trying to ban games, I think I'll puke. If you can't be bothered enough to take interest in what your kids are doing, do you honestly think that the government or a shop owner should have that responsibility? Blame the people who should be blamed...the parents...if you don't want your children playing GTA3 (duh!) then don't buy it. Simple as that. But we all know that it has become the style to just pass the blame to somebody else.
I'm glad that we don't have quite the kneejerk reactions in Canada for this sort of crap.
Now people are suing fast food chains for making them obese? I guess they were force-fed bigmacs.
The way things are going, people that shirk their own personal responsibilities are going to allow law makers erode our already threatened freedoms.
February 20th, 2003, 10:50 PM
While the accusation of depictions of violence being the direct cause of violent acts is nebulous it, to say violent depictions do not affect members of society by causing them to be more open to violent alternatives is probably self-deluding and hypocritical as well.
I'm sure that for some, violent depictions do lead to fantasies of violence that may be unlocked in a moment of weakness. On the other hand I'm sure others use such depictions to aid them project, transfer, and release their own pent up aggression in an inoffensive manner. For the latter use though, I do think there is a reasonable limit, where anything beyond is just plain sick.
February 20th, 2003, 11:40 PM
I agree with Darth V and Bond, whilst it is an ott reaction there must also be an understanding that although there a minority of cases, these cases still occur and to stereotype the people who do it would be silly indeed. But I think the world has in the last twenty years or so has become hyper-sensitive so that any given thing is likely to insult somebodies sensibilities, I mean I saw a documentary about a woman who tried to sue the makers of Married with Children because it was corrupting her kids, Howard Stern described her as a stupid b****, but the point is that with so many wishing to jump on the moral train, *cough* Daily Mail *ahem* , there will always be a receptive audience for such theories. As far as computer games go - they should just have a more effective rating system, this one at the moment is lame imo.
February 21st, 2003, 06:58 AM
What's wrong with the rating system they have now?
It's just like going to the movies, you always see parents bring their kids onto R rated movies. IF the parents won't be responsible and actually parent their kids, don't expect a whole industry to change their ways, or for store owners needing to see photo id before handing over the next GTA game to a 12 year old.
February 21st, 2003, 07:41 AM
Its interesting to see that being an online forum, everyone here is a regular computer user and so the argument is pretty one-sided. Not one person has posted saying that violence in games influences the players and so should be outlawed.
Perhaps (only perhaps) this suggests that the people who are calling for stricter regulations do not really use computers much and so are not really in a position to pass judgement.
My personal view is that violence in games is fine. If you're the type of person who is going to act out that kind of thing in real life, I think you're going to do it anyway, regardless of what games you play. I mean, even if you've never played a video game in your life, you're going to know what guns, knives, etc are. However, there should be a clear and compulsory ratings system to make the user aware of the content.
What is unacceptable however, is some of the sadism (inflicting physical and emotional pain as opposed to just killing) in games like GTA which, IMO gives sick and twisted people an opportunity to act out and develop their perverse fantasies. Such content should therefore be banned.
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