The assault on video games


The Master
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One video game clip showed a character urinating on victims and setting them on fire while a narrator made racial comments. Another featured a character gunning down people in church, while another "rewarded" players who reach a certain level with video clips of real topless strippers. Many of the games included bloody beatings or shootings, as well as explicit language.

Postal(a PC game) was made for adults

Every WW2 shooter has a church scene

BMX XXX had footage of strippers that you unlocked. It was M rated

The last sentence is most games out there. Most have an M rating already.

It must be noted that BMX XXX and Postal, the 2 way out there in violence and nudity, were financial flops. Postal might have sold enough for another sequel, but it wasn't a hit since it was for a certain audience. The Guy Game was also a huge flop proving that TnA does not sell videogames.

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OK all, thanks for the info. I had no idea that was on a home console system.

Senator Ford responded to the question about live nude strippers and said "my understanding that this came from 'Grand Theft Auto'."

I responded: I can assure you that there are no "video clips of real topless strippers" in Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City or Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

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OK all, thanks for the info. I had no idea that was on a home console system.

Senator Ford responded to the question about live nude strippers and said "my understanding that this came from 'Grand Theft Auto'."

I responded: I can assure you that there are no "video clips of real topless strippers" in Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City or Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

That's the problem here. The people that are making the decisions don't know anything about what they are talking about.

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  • 1 month later...
New York Balks at Next Grand Theft Auto

Elizabeth Millard, newsfactor.com

New York City's mayor has denounced the next version of Grand Theft Auto (GTA), for the violent game's resemblance to the metropolis. Although the game is set in fictional "Liberty City," trailers show familiar New York City landmarks, such as the Statue of Liberty, Coney Island's Cyclone, and the Brooklyn Bridge.

A spokesperson for Mayor Michael Bloomberg noted that the mayor does not support any video game where "you earn points for injuring or killing police officers."

In other news reports, city council member Peter Vallone noted that setting the game in the "safest city in America would be like setting Halo in Disneyland."

Mixed Reaction

Although GTA contains many scenes of violence, so too do numerous movies that are set in New York -- yet the city does not make an outcry about being depicted cinematically as a haven for prostitutes, mafiosos, or serial killers, noted Jason Della Rocca, executive director of the International Game Developers Association.

"When you look at other forms of entertainment, how many movies, books, and TV shows use New York City as a setting for their stories?" he asked.

"There's a lot of stuff out there that's pretty over the top, and doesn't put New York in the best light," Della Rocca added. "They don't complain about that, yet when a game depicts similar incidents as movies in a similar setting, they're up in arms."

This is not the first time that a city has balked over the use of its landscape for a video game, he said. When first-person shooter Rainbow Six, based on a Tom Clancy novel, set one of its versions in Las Vegas, the city's officials expressed their disapproval by trying to have the game banned.

Art Form?

The furor over GTA and Rainbow Six highlights a larger issue of what constitutes art, Della Rocca said. Movies and even TV shows are considered art forms, or at least protected entertainment.

But, he believes, video games are not seen as art in any form, and protests such as those coming from the New York mayor's office show a lack of respect for games, said Della Rocca.

"There's a just a mismatch in terms of reaction, based on the perception of games," he noted. "In this particular case with New York, it doesn't seem like it's politically motivated, like, 'Let's beat up on this game to benefit our political campaign.' Instead, it seems they're genuinely unhappy. But that just shows a lack of understanding about games as an entertainment form."

Critics of the game point out that GTA and other shooter games differ from movies because they contain interactivity, giving a user the ability to choose their actions.

The new version of Grand Theft Auto is scheduled to ship to stores in October.

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New York Balks at Next Grand Theft Auto

In other news reports, city council member Peter Vallone noted that setting the game in the "safest city in America would be like setting Halo in Disneyland."

New York is the safest city in America now...

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New York Balks at Next Grand Theft Auto

In other news reports, city council member Peter Vallone noted that setting the game in the "safest city in America would be like setting Halo in Disneyland."

New York is the safest city in America now...

Yep, I think we can all breathe a sigh of relief now that they've gotten those dangerous 90-lb. clothing models off the streets.

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  • 2 months later...
LONDON, England (AP) -- The Church of England accused Sony on Saturday of using a cathedral in Britain as the backdrop to a violent computer game, and said it should be withdrawn from shop shelves.

The church said Sony did not ask for permission to use Manchester Cathedral and demanded an apology.

The popular new PlayStation 3 game, "Resistance: Fall of Man," shows a virtual shootout between rival gunmen with hundreds of people killed inside the cathedral. Church officials described Sony's alleged use of the building as "sick" and sacrilegious.

http://www.cnn.com/2007/TECH/fun.games/06/...r.ap/index.html

First, the headline: "Cathedral shootout game under fire". That is just a brazen, blatant, bold faced lie. It isn't a cathedral shootout game One scene takes place in a cathedral. Big difference.

Second: Rival gunmen? Isn't this about an alien invasion?

Why can't people tell the truth?

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The Church of England says the company did not seek permission to use the Manchester Cathedral in the game, and is demanding an apology and a large donation to be used in its work with young people.

Church leaders have accused Sony of the "desecration" of the cathedral after the firm set the top-selling the new PlayStation 3 game, "Resistance: Fall of Man," in the place of worship.

The game, which has sold more than one million copies, sees a virtual shoot-out between humans and gun-toting aliens with hundreds killed during a battle inside the cathedral.

Sony has been criticized for choosing Manchester -- a city where gun violence is rife, and has left tens of youngsters dead. Every year a candlelit memorial services is held in the Manchester Cathedral in honor of people who have been killed by guns.

http://www.cnn.com/2007/TECH/fun.games/06/...ster/index.html

Well, at least they're now telling the truth about the game's plot.

Demanding a donation. Jesse Jackson would be proud.

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LONDON, England (AP) -- The Church of England accused Sony on Saturday of using a cathedral in Britain as the backdrop to a violent computer game, and said it should be withdrawn from shop shelves.

The church said Sony did not ask for permission to use Manchester Cathedral and demanded an apology.

The popular new PlayStation 3 game, "Resistance: Fall of Man," shows a virtual shootout between rival gunmen with hundreds of people killed inside the cathedral. Church officials described Sony's alleged use of the building as "sick" and sacrilegious.

........ahem........

It's not real.

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  • 9 months later...

Stephen King coming to the defense of video games,

I'm no fan of videogames; pretty much gave them up in the late '70s or early '80s, when my kids used to beat me regularly at Pitfall! (hell, they used to beat me at Pong, and back then our youngest wasn't yet eligible for T-ball, let alone Little League). Sure, I've occasionally plugged quarters into one of the machines in the lobby of my local cineplex and shot at some bad guys, but I always miss the high-value targets and can never remember how to reload. As for amassing enough points to get bonus time? Forget about it. If I arrive early for the show, I'm much more apt to stick my money in the nonviolent machine that's full of stuffed toys. You probably know the one I'm talking about; you get 30 seconds to maneuver the claw, then drop it. I won a stuffed dog on one occasion doing that. Another time I won a rubber frog. When you squeezed it, the frog made a ribbit-ribbit sound and stuck out its tongue, which I enjoyed (your uncle Stevie is easily amused, he admits).

So, nope — videogames are not my thing. Nor am I some kind of raving political nutcase. But when I heard about HB 1423, which happens to be a bill pending in the Massachusetts state legislature, I still hit the roof. HB 1423 would restrict or outright ban the sale of violent videogames to anyone under the age of 18. Which means, by the way, that a 17-year-old who can get in to see Hostel: Part II would be forbidden by law from buying (or renting, one supposes) the violent but less graphic Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

According to the proposed bill, violent videogames are pornographic and have no redeeming social merit. The vid-critics claim they exist for one reason and one reason only, so kids can experience the vicarious thrill of killing. Now, what does and doesn't have social merit is always an interesting question, one I can discuss for hours. But what makes me crazy is when politicians take it upon themselves to play surrogate parents. The results of that are usually disastrous. Not to mention undemocratic.

One of HB 1423's cosponsors is Rep. Christine E. Canavan, of Brockton. ''I think this legislation is a good idea,'' she told the Boston Herald. ''I don't want this constant barrage of violence on young minds and for them to think it is all right.'' It's a good point...except that it seems to me that the games only reflect a violence that already exists in the society.

Nor will I argue for the artistic value of stuff like God of War, or 50 Cent: Bulletproof, where looting the victims of gang violence is part of the game (players use the money to buy new Fiddy tunes and music videos — classy). I do, however, want to point out that videogames, like movies, have a ratings system, and ones with the big M or A on the box mean ''Not for you, baby brother.''

And if there's violence to be had, the kids are gonna find a way to get it, just as they'll find a way to get all-day shooters like No Country for Old Men from cable if they want. Or Girls Gone Wild, for that matter. Can parents block that stuff? You bet. But most never do. The most effective bar against what was called ''the seduction of the innocent'' when this hot-button issue centered on violent comic books 60 years ago is still parents who know and care not just about what their kids are watching and reading, but what they're doing and who they're hanging with. Parents need to have the guts to forbid material they find objectionable...and then explain why it's being forbidden. They also need to monitor their children's lives in the pop culture — which means a lot more than seeing what games they're renting down the street.

If HB 1423 becomes law, will it remain law? Doubtful. Similar legislation has been declared unconstitutional in several states. Could Massachusetts legislators find better ways to watch out for the kiddies? Man, I sure hope so, because there's a lot more to America's culture of violence than Resident Evil 4.

What really makes me insane is how eager politicians are to use the pop culture — not just videogames but TV, movies, even Harry Potter — as a whipping boy. It's easy for them, even sort of fun, because the pop-cult always hollers nice and loud. Also, it allows legislators to ignore the elephants in the living room. Elephant One is the ever-deepening divide between the haves and have-nots in this country, a situation guys like Fiddy and Snoop have been indirectly rapping about for years. Elephant Two is America's almost pathological love of guns. It was too easy for critics to claim — falsely, it turned out — that Cho Seung-Hui (the Virginia Tech killer) was a fan of Counter-Strike; I just wish to God that legislators were as eager to point out that this nutball had no problem obtaining a 9mm semiautomatic handgun. Cho used it in a rampage that resulted in the murder of 32 people. If he'd been stuck with nothing but a plastic videogame gun, he wouldn't even have been able to kill himself.

Case closed.

King is awesome

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  • 4 weeks later...

http://www.gather.com/viewArticle.jsp?arti...;nav=Groupspace

The world's foremost ribbon dissemination organization, Mothers Against Drunk Driving has recently petitioned the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) to "reclassify Grand Theft Auto IV as an 'Adults Only' title" in reaction to the inclusion of drunk driving in the role-playing game, which allows you to basically run the gamut of antisocial behaviors that would garner both a pat on the back from Eliot Spitzer and a chest bump from your local Cripp.

Apparently, the virtual imbibing of alcohol in the game, (which augments the very real smoking of weed that usually goes along with this sort of activity), blurs the screen and complicates the driving controls---which seem to us a very realistic admonishment, but to MADD is a trivialization of the very serious issue that is driving while impaired.

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5ju16X_-...zB_e3AD90CH47G0

MADD attacks 'Grand Theft Auto IV'

By DERRIK J. LANG – 1 day ago

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Mothers Against Drunk Driving wants a stricter rating on "Grand Theft Auto IV."

The organization is calling on the Entertainment Software Ratings Board, the independent organization that assigns video-game ratings, to reclassify "GTA IV" as an Adults Only game. The action-driving game, which includes the ability to drive while intoxicated, is currently rated Mature.

"Drunk driving is not a game, and it is not a joke," MADD said in a statement released Tuesday. "Drunk driving is a choice, a violent crime and it is also 100 percent preventable."

MADD is also calling on publisher Take-Two Interactive and developer Rockstar Games to consider stopping distribution of the game — which analysts expect to sell 9 million copies and make over $400 million at launch — "out of respect for the millions of victims/survivors of drunk driving."

http://machinist.salon.com/blog/2008/05/01/gta_madd/

Mothers Against Drunk Driving has put out a statement calling on the Entertainment Software Ratings Board, the industry group that rates video games, to re-rate "Grand Theft Auto IV" as "Adults Only," which would effectively pull it from store shelves across the nation.

"GTA" is rated "Mature," which means it is sold only to people 17 and older -- a rating roughly equivalent to an R for movies. MADD wants the new rating -- something closer to an NC-17 or an X -- because the game allows your character to drive while intoxicated (see a demo in the video above).

In its statement, MADD says, "Drunk driving is not a game and it is not a joke. Drunk driving is a choice, a violent crime and it is also 100 percent preventable."

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Then Rockstar releases a game, and suddenly the shit hits the fan (even if said game is fairly light-hearted, like Bully)

But don't you know? Bully was a "Columbine simulator"! Jack Thompson said so!

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  • 2 weeks later...

http://www.onenewsnow.com/Culture/Default.aspx?id=112608

A bipartisan bill that would require retailers to check identification for all customers who purchase video games with a "Mature" or "Adult Only" rating is receiving praise from a pro-family organization.

Congressmen Jim Matheson (D-Utah) and Lee Terry (R-Nebraska) have unveiled the "Video Game Ratings Enforcement Act." The legislation comes on the heels of the recent release of the violent and sexually explicit video game, Grand Theft Auto IV (rated "M"), which has been roundly criticized for its content. Retailers have also been ripped for allowing sales of similarly rated games to younger children.

Dan Isett of the Parents Television Council (PTC) believes the legislation is needed. He says retailers have done a poor job when it comes to insuring that children cannot access "Mature" rated video games."[A] 2005 Federal Trade Commission study found that 42 percent of the time, a child was able to go into the store and come out with a 'Mature' rated game," Isett details.

**Sigh**

How "sexually explicit" is GTA IV?

I've got a sneaking suspicion that "sexually explicit" isn't an accurate label, but before I break out the L-Word I need more info.

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