Friday, July 15, 2005

It looks like even Video Game Violence and Porn have people arguing on the two extremes. Glenn Harlan Reynolds (yes that Glenn Reynolds)points out an interesting trend were teen sex and violence is lowering over the years, where as access to porn and violent games is getting easier. On the opposite side of the fence is Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton calling them "a silent epidemic" that will destroy our children. She wants to make it harder for younger kids to get this content in video games. So are we going to start fining stores the same way they fine them for selling booze and smokes to children? Do we even do this for videos?

Where do I stand on the issue of violent video games and sex? I believe that violence and sex are a part of human nature, no getting around it. I know that violent game can be a release for pent up aggression and frustrations. I guess the same can be said for porn. There is a limit though. I don't like cruel and gruesome violence. Blowing away a zombie or a person and seeing blood splatter with a few body chunks is one thing; seeing guts fall out, brain goo, and a person screaming, yelling, and suffering as he dies is a completely different thing that I take no enjoyment from. Similar thing goes for porn(Playboy) and kinky porn(Paris Hilton). Why should my preferences on games, movies, and porn dictate what other people are able to get in their movies, games, and porn?

Should a little child have access to this? I say no, little children should enjoy there youth and innocence for the little bit they can, but this choice completely lies in the hands of the parents. If a parent wants to know how bad a game can be, read the box. The ESRB, for all the complaining I have done about them, has actually done a pretty good job of describing what the game may hold. If you decide the content may be suitable for your child, try watching them play it for a bit or play it yourself. Do not rely on some other people telling you how suitable the game is. If you bought the game because your snot noised little demon has thrown a tantrum the whole block heard, there is no point in you trying anything to stop him from play violent games and watching porn. In fact there is no point in you continuing to breed, so do everyone a favor and go get sterilized...

I always thought the way game makers could get around the ESRB rating was to have hidden content, or a downloadable add-on that would let the game be playable for little kids, but also enjoyable for an older audience. Some games do this right now by having a parental control option that limits gore and language, but they still get the higher rating because the content is there. Apparently now, even if the game has to be hacked to get the content, it should get a stiffer ESRB rating.

Anyone that is bemoaning the fact that their child can get porn and violence out of a GTA game is a moron. Have you tried to play the game or watch it? Have you read anything about it? The games I would understand people being surprised about are the cutesy, children games; like Pokemon. What can be evil about that cute game you ask? The whole game promotes animal cruelty, gambling, and stealing! Your objective is to have your pet fight other pets in a combat ring, and you get money and prizes if you win. If you are fighting a wild animal, you can catch it, stuff it into a small ball, and force it to fight other animals. Does this sound like cock/dog fighting to anyone else? In Pokemon Colosseum for the Game Cube, you are a former gang member that is now stealing other people’s pets so that you can cure them from being dark pokemon. (My sister plays these games; I swear that is why I know about them.) The people that you steal them from do not even react to you taking the pet right in front of them, and you don't return the pet after you 'cured' it. Why isn't PETA or Sen. Clinton angry with these games? Because people would look at that cute yellow rat and think that Clinton is crazy, instead of only the people that play violent video games.

What Rockstar games needs to do now is have a press release stating that they do not know how the content got into the game, maybe a disgruntled employee that put it in and is now leaking the hack, and offer free by mail replacements of the game with a new version that doesn’t have that content. At this point, I am not sure if it would make a difference, so may be they should just sit back and enjoy all the free publicity that they are once again getting for their game.


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