Blame the Media… They Just Might Deserve It.

A little of the old ultra-violence

Something’s been bugging me for a few weeks and I was simply going to let it go until I heard yet another news story ranting about how ‘awful’ video games are. During the otherwise great Digitallife show here in NYC a few weeks ago, there was a ‘news’ crew rushing around deliberately looking for violent gameplay footage to run on that evening’s newscast. As annoying as this was, what made it really disturbing was the reporter leading his crew. He had no interest in finding out why a particular game had violence in it, he just had a cameraman poke his lens toward games on display while yelling “OK, where’s the blood? Go kill something- Let’s go!” at whomever was holding a controller or mouse.

the gory details, continued…

I happened to be playing a build of Hellgate: London at the time, but when the camera was shoved my way, I turned away from the corpses of the monsters I had just decimated and ran around an empty section of the area. I was definitely NOT going to feed the ratings-driven bloodlust of an absolute idiot looking to exploit something he refused to understand. Just as the so-called journalist asked me “Is this game violent? Any killing in this game? ” I stopped moving the character around and went to the inventory screen to modify the weapons I’d gathered. The gorehound with the microphone hung around for a few more seconds, then pointed his head toward the sound of virtual gunfire off in the distance. “Come on, I think there’s some violence over here – let’s go!”

One rep had started explaing the game to him, but was blown off with “I don’t care about that stuff, we just need something gory for tonight’s news!” As he stalked off, the scent of polygonal gibs tingling his nose, I’d imagine by the time he finished making his rounds, a few of the folks who make games just might have wanted to oblige him. Perhaps in a dark alleyway somewhere in the real world. Or maybe not – there are some really cool guys and gals out there who make games. I just wish they’d get a fair deal from the nightly news crowd and politicians looking for votes from the easily frightened…

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