Hey guys, remember how I said back when I restarted this journal that I might post discussion topics here and there? Well, before my girlfriend gets here (meaning I'll be offline for a few days), I thought I'd leave you with a little something to think about in regards to "where do we draw the line when it comes to freedom of expression?"
Do you like violent video games? As in bloody-gory violent? Personally I don't mind violence of that sort in games, but this particular game currently in development strikes me as just....wrong. You see, my bro and I were talking the other day and we landed on the topic of a game called "HATRED", which is currently on the Steam Greenlight. Now, plenty of people are crying foul over this game right now while others are harshly defending it. So, what's the issue? Is it because it's violent
? Well, the problem is a bit deeper than just "it's got blood and violence in it". It's more about the concept...
Consider this: you've got games like GTA
, The Evil Within, Resident Evil, Postal, Dishonored,
and other games classified as "violent", but in those cases there's some kind of story or satire to be found, and if they have killable NPCs resembling innocent people, messing with/killing them is an option. So what sets "HATRED" apart from the others?
It's a mass murder simulator. The goal of the game is to brutally murder as many innocent people as possible because the main character, a heavily armed psychopath, hates the world and wants to kill everyone. No satire or story in sight, just disturbingly realistic depictions of a gun-toting lunatic storming into homes/shops and killing people.
Honestly, when I saw the trailer for the first time, I thought to myself, "What the actual fuck?" I'm not trying to be soapboxy about this or anything, that's just how I felt. I thought about it afterwards, wanting to make sense of my reaction since I've been exposed to violent imagery in games for so long. So, I looked up the developer's website to see what they were saying about their own game. Lo and behold, the answer was in a paragraph explaining why they were making it.
They said they wanted to go against the "trends" of games trying to be, as they put it, more "polite, colorful, politically correct, or trying to be part of a higher art -- rather than just entertainment". That's when it hit me. They're going out of their way to make "pure, gaming pleasure" out of cold-blooded, hyper-realistic scenes of mass murder? If you ask me, that's not just being tasteless. It's incredibly mean-spirited, though the devs seem to think that saying "it's just a game
" makes it okay. To be honest, I find the "it's just a game, don't buy it if you don't like it" phrase just another way of saying "don't question it, if you don't like it your opinion's not valid."
I'm not trying to demonize the developers of this game or anything. I'm not going to fault anybody for wanting to step outside the box in designing games, but IMO, these guys have gone about it entirely
the wrong way, and I fear they're only supplying ammo to the "videogames cause killings" crowd.
So where do you think the line should be drawn? As far as I'm concerned, I draw it at treating the act of murder in and of itself as entertainment, digital or otherwise.
Bottom line: I think this game was a terrible idea, and Valve should've kept it banned from Steam. But I'm not done with this topic here. Once I return to my regular schedule, I'm going to finish what I started last night: A mini-YTP satirizing this whole debacle!
Now I better get the hell out of here before some irate commenters drop by and start shouting at me for voicing my opinion. Ta-ta~! Oh, and once more, happy holidays to you!