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Games About War Are Violent! *shock*

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
http://news.uk.msn.com/science/articles.aspx?cp-documentid=150781272&ocid=today

Keith Vaz in his infinite wisdom has suggested that a game about war is violent! Well now I am rather shocked at this revelation.

Ever since Street Fighter 2 and more so with GTA there has been a stream or stupid politicians scare mongering about computer games and their awful effects on the public and personally I think its a load of old bollocks.

Vaz said a few rather stupid things as I am sure he often does but the bit that takes the cake is this quote:
"It contains such scenes of brutality that even the manufacturers have put in warnings within the game telling people how they can skip particular scenes."

So they knew it was sensitive and they censored it :eek2: I guess it gets him in the papers though.

Personally I think that computer games are firmly established as the new medium for sending a message across to people and Call of Duty 4 is no exception - anyone who has played the Aftermath level of the CoD4 will know that it does its level best to not glamourise war.

There are oh so many examples of games trying to send the right message across that it makes me want to shove my Xbox360 sideways up Mr Vaz's arse.
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Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Keith Vaz spends so much time tugging his foreskin in a darkened room that he has no idea what is going on in the real world.

    Shock horror! It's a violent game!

    But just as we expect parents to control DVD content and not supply inappropriate content to minors, we expect the same with games.

    If Mr Vaz wants to block inappropriate scenes of violence, would he suggest shutting down the internetz?

    He's a has-been politician trying to make himself current. He should STFU and stop trying to police the 99.9% of adults who understand that its just a game.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    FFS, games already have age ratings. The politicians can leave them well alone because the age certificate agency have already done their bit. Just sod off!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Two points:

    1) I play "violent" computer games. Loved the previous two CoDs and have just ordered the new one. Very much looking forward to it. I've also loved the GTA series, Max Payne, Resident Evil, Deus Ex etc. etc. Essentially, more violent games than you can shake a stick at. Does it make me violent? No. Have I ever committed a violent crime? No. Does it make me want to go and shoot up the neighbourhood? No.

    2) Why is this criticism just levelled against computer games? Why not art and literature? One of the set texts in the final year of my Spanish degree was La Familia de Pascual Duarte by Camilo Jose Cela, a novel chock-a-block with violence, murder, rape and pedastry. It was and still is hailed as probably the best novel to come out of Franco-era Spain and is the widest-translated work of Spanish fiction after Don Quixote (sources, in Espanol: Click, Click and Click) Upon reading it, did I want to go and recreate it all for real? No.

    And what's more, this book is readily accessible in libraries (Spanish ones admittedly) where the products are not age-restricted, unlike computer games.

    Explain that one to me Keith. I'd love to hear your answer.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Call of Duty games are quite cinematic. I watched a playthrough of the level in question and it wasn't fun or entertaining. It was quite moving in a way - emotional investment in the storyline which is a big part of movies is moving over to games these days. I was playing dragonage: origins the other day when your best friend is kidnapped and raped by a lord and you have the choice to kill him and rescue your friend, but if you choose to do so your entire community will be put to death. (I killed him anyway)

    Who remembers the nuke scene from Call of Duty modern warfare? Where you go back to rescue a helicopter pilot shot down, but get caught in a nuke blast. You survive the helicopter crash and can limp around for a few moments before dying in a very morose atmosphere. Just like people appreciate schindler's list as a great film, for example, nobody 'enjoys' it.

    And though I haven't played the game yet, it did strike me as very much that. The moments before the mission your CO says
    "You don't want to know what it's cost already to put you next to him [the terrorist bad guy]."
    "It will cost you a piece of yourself."
    "It will cost nothing compared to everything you'll save."

    Terrorist level in Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HrqA0Wz45fM&feature=related

    Nuke section in Call of Duty Modern Warfare:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BJeJZ6FzmeQ
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    The Yanks get me.
    In some states they have been campaigning to get rid of toy guns ...but want to keep the fucking real ones!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    You could imagine them rewriting the second amendment to run along the lines of "... the right to bear real arms, not plastic ones..."
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    The Yanks get me.
    In some states they have been campaigning to get rid of toy guns ...but want to keep the fucking real ones!!!!!!!!!!!

    :D

    The content of games, film, books, etc doesn't bother me one bit. Don't like it, don't buy it (for your kids :mad:). Where there might be an issue is in the habits such things might cause, but that applies as much to Tetris as it does to anything else. But funny that no-one worries about kids that sit in their bedroom reading all day. Indeed, some parents might even encourage it. But the "dangers" of computer games are just another example of someone trying to come up with any excuse whatsoever to ban something they just don't like.

    Far more dangerous are things that claim to be true, like the gutter press. Nobody plays computer games thinking they're real. The idiots that try to get them banned read their reactionary bullshit and think it's real though.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    What makes me laugh when playing COD 4 or 5 on multiplayer are the American servers where swearing is banned. The admins/saddos don't appreciate it when you point out the irony of banning swearing on a game that is age restricted and full of blood/gore/violence. Then they ban you.

    As for Keith Vaz, the guy really doesn't know what he's talking about. If he wants to ban games because of an over-realistic portrayal of violence he should ban Operation Flashpoint 2. In that you have to field dress people who are bleeding it's that realistic.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    “Younger gamers, typically under the age of eight, tend to be more influenced by games and what they see on screen. They usually try and mimic what they have watched on the big screen. However, adults which this game is certified for, have already formed their cognitive sensibilities and will not usually start acting differently because of a video game.”

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/video-games/6536966/Modern-Warfare-2-No-link-between-video-games-and-adult-violence.html
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Teagan wrote: »
    “Younger gamers, typically under the age of eight, tend to be more influenced by games and what they see on screen. They usually try and mimic what they have watched on the big screen. However, adults which this game is certified for, have already formed their cognitive sensibilities and will not usually start acting differently because of a video game.”

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/video-games/6536966/Modern-Warfare-2-No-link-between-video-games-and-adult-violence.html
    It's a good job that only adults play it then, and no parents would be irresponsible enough to buy it for a child under the age of 8, isn't it?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Whowhere wrote: »
    As for Keith Vaz, the guy really doesn't know what he's talking about. If he wants to ban games because of an over-realistic portrayal of violence he should ban Operation Flashpoint 2. In that you have to field dress people who are bleeding it's that realistic.
    Is that any good? I bought the first Operation Flashpoint when it first came out on the PC, and it was absolutely brilliant. Made in the Czech Republic, if I'm not mistaken.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    The problem is its not only the gutter press that whip up the nonsense and scaremongering that computer games generate - does anyone remember this?

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-316491/Teenager-gets-life-Manhunt-murder.html

    The 'Manhunt Murderer' as he was called, the strange thing is the way they twisted it, the kid who was killed was obsessed with manhunt and the grizzly murder was performed by the intended victim who took the claw hammer and battered the other kid to death with it.
    This story caused most supermarkets and i think it was Game who took it off the shelves - and not before time because that game was fucking awful, not for the violence but the actual game was a load of arse.

    I think some parents are irresponsible in some ways though, I know at least 3 parents who let 8 year olds play call of duty 4 but wont let them watch a 15 rated film which personally seems wrong to me.

    Another example is the frankly stupid argument over the sex scene in Mass Effect, although its a 12 rated game http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ZXu9HocLCw there is like 5 seconds of arse and side boob and it created a storm of protest from people who never played it, sod the violence, suicides, murders, genocide, prostitutes, extortion the game has in it - lets protest against side boob because that outraged mother told me about it! :D
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Whilst I agree that it's ridiculous to talk about censoring elements of games once they've been passed by the BBFC - I've gotta side with Charlie Brooker rather than you on this one Shyboy. The level a pointless, appallingly unpleasant moment in a game that's basically just a ridiculous shooter, without any of the impact of the nuke moment in CoD4.

    I think there's a real valid debate to be had about the level - and whether it has any merit at all - personally every justification of it I've seen is dog shit - but what's most disappointing and a sign of how video games are viewed is that the debate isn't about this level, in this game - it always has to be about all games.

    Which is why these complaints are always so frustrating, in the same way as when Crash gets people saying 'cinema' is too explicit, or Evil Dead means it's too 'violent' - it should be the text not the medium.

    Although a more interesting view on CoD was Grant Morrison's - who saw CoD and, obviously, America's Army as part of mass pro-military propaganda designed to encourage support of our current wars.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Just being playing Dragon Age Origins and am totally dismayed when bedding Morrigan she keeps on her bra and panties. Honestly, what are games coming to...

    On a more serious note the reasons why games get picked on but not books is that playing a game is an active expereince, reading a book is a passive one. I don't agree with the argument, but it's not just elitism at work
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    They should therefore ban Pac Man. It's a guy running around in dark corridors, munching pills and listening to repetative music. Oh *shock horror*, a reference to drugs :-D
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Jim V wrote: »
    Whilst I agree that it's ridiculous to talk about censoring elements of games once they've been passed by the BBFC - I've gotta side with Charlie Brooker rather than you on this one Shyboy. The level a pointless, appallingly unpleasant moment in a game that's basically just a ridiculous shooter, without any of the impact of the nuke moment in CoD4.

    I think there's a real valid debate to be had about the level - and whether it has any merit at all - personally every justification of it I've seen is dog shit - but what's most disappointing and a sign of how video games are viewed is that the debate isn't about this level, in this game - it always has to be about all games.

    Which is why these complaints are always so frustrating, in the same way as when Crash gets people saying 'cinema' is too explicit, or Evil Dead means it's too 'violent' - it should be the text not the medium.

    Although a more interesting view on CoD was Grant Morrison's - who saw CoD and, obviously, America's Army as part of mass pro-military propaganda designed to encourage support of our current wars.

    I agree with Jimmy.
    But ...the fact the discussion isn't about that level but ...the whole media ...dilutes it ...makes it meaningless and sod all is learned or resolved ...as per usual.
    It's great that people think it's all part of the wider debate ...but it isn't ...shouldn't be.
    Debates get that wide they become meaningless.
    Another drug refference for you ...it's ok to expand your mind but there has to be a limit.
    Otherwise ...the expanse of your mind is that vast you can't find sod all.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    It's a good job that only adults play it then, and no parents would be irresponsible enough to buy it for a child under the age of 8, isn't it?

    So what's your point? Children shouldn't be allowed access to the game. But I, as an adult, should be. It's a game. Nothing more.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Teagan wrote: »
    So what's your point? Children shouldn't be allowed access to the game. But I, as an adult, should be. It's a game. Nothing more.

    Erm, yes. That was my point.

    Also, I love the way that a murderer having a room full of violent stuff is proof that the violent stuff drove him to kill. It's like finding out that a gay man has a collection of gay porn, and assuming that's the reason you see him rubbing up against other men every weekend.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Is that any good? I bought the first Operation Flashpoint when it first came out on the PC, and it was absolutely brilliant. Made in the Czech Republic, if I'm not mistaken.


    According to a guy I work with it's awesome. Very difficult apparently (like the first one I guess) but brilliant. The graphics are amazing as well.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Erm, yes. That was my point.

    Also, I love the way that a murderer having a room full of violent stuff is proof that the violent stuff drove him to kill. It's like finding out that a gay man has a collection of gay porn, and assuming that's the reason you see him rubbing up against other men every weekend.

    Ohh ok. :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Is that any good? I bought the first Operation Flashpoint when it first came out on the PC, and it was absolutely brilliant. Made in the Czech Republic, if I'm not mistaken.

    There's a thread taking shape over in net and tech discussing the actual quality of the game, rather than it's effect on politicians :)

    http://vbulletin.thesite.org/showthread.php?t=138515

    ...though god knows how it'll be better than Dragon Age
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Jim V wrote: »

    ...though god knows how it'll be better than Dragon Age

    :yes:
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Okay - I can't see how this debate can continue without spoilers so I'll just put it out there...

    The plot is that you're a CIA agent in deep cover with a nasty bloke. You follow that cover to the point of murdering 100s of innocent people in an airport, in collusion with a group of terrorists, and then massacre the police sent to stop you. The plot of the game is that you're then shot by the bad guy, sparking a war with Russia, as it looks like the Americans are behind the massacre...

    But you are behind the massacre in the plot - you can't and don't stop it, your handlers don't stop it - you aren't allowed to stop it yourself. In fact the only way to continue the mission is to actively participate in the killings, at least the killings of soldiers.

    So seriously, what message am I supposed to take from this - the CIA doesn't mind killing Russians? That the rules of war don't apply to Americans? That soldiers don't care about committing massacres as long as the ends justify the means?

    I guess I'm not arguing about the idea of violent games being violent - but if a film showed an American happily murdering innocent people one after the other as a good guy... I don't know, I can't see any justification for the level and the level of participation involved. Surely a nuke or a bomb or anything you would be tricked into doing would achieve the same?

    It seems to feel like bad writing to justify a very, very unpleasant moment in videogame history - especially when say alongside the gung-hero Die Hard ultra-unrealism of the rest of the game.

    I don't know - it's just really bad and really unpleasant - not shocking in a revealing way, just shocking in a staggeringly distasteful way.

    So I guess the question maybe shouldn't be - 'should games be banned' but 'should game designers have some moral duty?'

    Just to be clear as well - in my view you'd never be able to put this in a film, and I can't see how a publisher would publish it in a book, not the way it's presented in the game.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Jim V wrote: »
    The plot is that you're a CIA agent in deep cover with a nasty bloke. You follow that cover to the point of murdering 100s of innocent people in an airport, in collusion with a group of terrorists, and then massacre the police sent to stop you. The plot of the game is that you're then shot by the bad guy, sparking a war with Russia, as it looks like the Americans are behind the massacre...

    But you are behind the massacre in the plot - you can't and don't stop it, your handlers don't stop it - you aren't allowed to stop it yourself. In fact the only way to continue the mission is to actively participate in the killings, at least the killings of soldiers.

    So seriously, what message am I supposed to take from this - the CIA doesn't mind killing Russians? That the rules of war don't apply to Americans? That soldiers don't care about committing massacres as long as the ends justify the means?

    I guess I'm not arguing about the idea of violent games being violent - but if a film showed an American happily murdering innocent people one after the other as a good guy... I don't know, I can't see any justification for the level and the level of participation involved. Surely a nuke or a bomb or anything you would be tricked into doing would achieve the same?

    It seems to feel like bad writing to justify a very, very unpleasant moment in videogame history - especially when say alongside the gung-hero Die Hard ultra-unrealism of the rest of the game.

    I don't know - it's just really bad and really unpleasant - not shocking in a revealing way, just shocking in a staggeringly distasteful way.

    So I guess the question maybe shouldn't be - 'should games be banned' but 'should game designers have some moral duty?'

    Just to be clear as well - in my view you'd never be able to put this in a film, and I can't see how a publisher would publish it in a book, not the way it's presented in the game.

    I don't think I could disagree more; this sounds like the plot of an absolutely compelling novel and/or film. Anyone with a modicum of intelligence is forced to consider the moral quandary presented by the plot. You're invited to evalute ends justifying means as well as the morality of following orders, and I can't recall another games that's done this. I agree that the designers of a game do face moral questions, and I'm sure you could present a more egregiously gratuitous plot which could be considered being cut, but I don't see how this is it.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I guess what I'm trying to get across is the lack of what you're discussing - the overall sense of having to balance the moral quandary isn't there - and it could have been. You don't have any options - you don't have any choices.

    You don't know why you're there, or what the bigger picture is - you don't get the option to try and save anyone or change the situation.

    Your reaction was I guess my initial reaction to what the level would be like, and to be honest how I expected to react - but it isn't how the level felt to me. You are literally playing an on-rails shooter presented with literally 100s of screaming men and women to kill and in the end following your orders causes world war 3 - if you hadn't been there, there wouldn't be a war.

    With just a couple of cut scenes, or chances to save people, or a sense of some involvement or affect on what's going on it could have been a masterpiece - but with no moral choice to make - you have to kill innocent people and cause a war - it just seems, well, tawdry to me.

    Maybe I sold it too well :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    It doesn't sound like a moral quandry to me I must admit. It seems like a cheap plot device with no real emotional involvement, you need to build characters and plot before presenting them with 'devil or the deep blue sea' scenarios.

    Given that Dragon Age has come out (and with possible spoiler) they do a good one where a kid has been taken over by a demon and you actually have a choice to kill him, sacrifice his Mum or go for help, but take the risk that he'll kill further innocents in the village. You actually had a choice and I spent ages trying to avoid it before running out of options. I'm still not sure I made the right decision - that's emotional involvement, not forcing a player to be pyschotic.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I guess I'll have to play the game to forge a more informed opinion on its content; Jim's initial description made it sound excellent. I agree that actually giving you choices to make would be a more immediately immersive, and perhaps thought-provoking, experience, but it still sounds like you're forced to think about the moral questions raised - as the people who've played it and are commenting on it, clearly have.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Jim V wrote: »
    So I guess the question maybe shouldn't be - 'should games be banned' but 'should game designers have some moral duty?'
    Or some writing talent. The plots of most computer games are essentially the equivalent to the plot of a porn film. "What plot can we come up with that will result in the most hardcore sex scenes/people to shoot?"

    And while I'm at it, I think that every first person shooter plot should be told in the same way as Half Life. I've only played the first half, but that's surely the best example of story telling in a computer game? Fuck off with the cut scenes. If I wanted that, I'd watch a film or play Monkey Island again.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Then again Dragon Age is very cut scene heavy, but does a wonderful job of getting across deeply distressing moral choices and still allows you to make horrible decisions. Without ever feeling the way that level did to me.

    I guess it really is the writing - Infinity Ward just didn't bother figuring out the plot beyond wanking off to Red Dawn 3 times a day
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Jim V wrote: »
    I guess what I'm trying to get across is the lack of what you're discussing - the overall sense of having to balance the moral quandary isn't there - and it could have been. You don't have any options - you don't have any choices.

    You don't know why you're there, or what the bigger picture is - you don't get the option to try and save anyone or change the situation.

    [you're] presented with literally 100s of screaming men and women to kill and in the end following your orders causes world war 3 - if you hadn't been there, there wouldn't be a war.

    Hmm, sounds like being a soldier in a modern war.
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