As many know, the release of the new call of duty modern warfare was only a few days ago. Those of you who have been able to finally tear your eyes away from the game would have noticed the amount of success it has had. It has been predicted to gross more sales in its opening week than The Dark Knight($155.3m), which is a big deal for a videogame. However, with the bright side of its release, it has also spun some cause for concern. MP's have brought up the subject of voilence within video games and protecting children from the content. This topic along with a leaked video of a section of the game has had few people discussing the impacts and necessity of such content within video games.
The section of the game is infact a mission based within a Russian airport.
IF YOU HAVE NOT PLAYED THE GAME YET AND DO NOT WANT IT RUINED...SKIP THIS SECTION!!!
The idea is that, you are an American undercover as a russian fanatic gunning down civilians within an airport...thats all i can really say since i still haven't played the game. Watch the video below to get a jist of whats involved. I must stress that the video contains voilence that some people will find offensive.
After talking to a few people and reading comments on forums and other sites, i have noticed that many people either don't care about the voilence and appreciate the game, or hate the game now calling it "voilent and sick". Many of you will have your own opinions on this subject matter, as well. Talking to a good friend of mine, they hate the game because of the reference to similar situations that have occured in Russia and abroad. They have had relatives who have suffered and passed due to these situations. Now this is a sensative issue for certain people so i just want to state that i fully understand both sides of the argument. From one point of view, i can understand how content such as the airport scene can be disturbing to people who have either seen it in reality or know of people who have. It is a serious issue and should not be taken lightly in entertainment. To younger audiences, it can make them insensitive to the impact of voilence within reality. To some it can motivate them to recreate carnage.
On the other hand, the game is specifically made for adults and is supposed to create a sense of disturbance and make the player feel uneasy so that they can then play through the game as if it really happened to them. Games are meant to stimulate our creativity and allow us to take on other personas. Live our lives different to what we already have. NOT AS A DERRANGED TERRORIST (i hope many of you do not find the need for this) but in this case a soldier of war, one who is fighting to protect peace. To achieve this, the designers have simulated near-realistic senarios and reallities of war. I can see that their intension is not to create entertainment from such senarious but more so a mood so that the player knows the reality of what is going on.
Games are often seen as being very voilent and many parents always complain about the effects they may have upon their children. The way i see it, games are not alone in creating controvesy when it comes to voilence and excessive adult content. Films, TV, Music and Books all have similar themes as video games. Look at Resevoir Dogs, Scarface, SAW franchise, Pulp Fiction, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, most rap music and even shows like Generation Kill. Resevoir contains scenes of torture and ganster voilence, it was banned for a while before release in certain countries. Pulp Fiction covers drug abuse, racism, rape, theft and voilence. Most rap music covers themes of gang related voilence, hatred to law enforcement and mistreatment of members of the opposite sex and Generation Kill portrays the realities of war in Iraq through the eyes of soldiers. It contains racism, hatred and voilence yet all these forms are aired where access is simple for younger audiences. All these things are around and can be easily accessed through other means such as television, internet and radio. Games however come with an age rating and would require people of that age to purchase. If not, blame lies on the people that purchase the game for younger audiences. If a parent buys an 18 rated game for a 15 year old, the parent is to blame for any effects it may have upon the child. For adults, its obvious that the game purchased is for a mature person and that it is ficticious.
In short, voilence in games is not a bad thing as long as it is treated properly and understood. Games do differ from other forms of media due to the fact that the character is being played by the player and therefore it is their own actions, but it should be the actions of sensible people that understand the difference between fiction and reality. COD Modern Warfare 2 has dealt with the voilence by advising people to skip scenes if they are too voilent or may cause offense. Like all other forms of media, Games allow the audience to believe a ficticious world and through that need to set the scene...
MP's discussion over COD Modern Warfare 2