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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Top Ten Reasons Mothers and the Church don’t Know Squat about Video Games

It’s that time of year again, when long awaited games which have been over-hyped and under play tested hit the store shelves in time for Christmas with the uniform price of $49.99. God, I love this time of year. However, it is also the time of year in which heavily uninformed mothers, religious fanatics, and pandering politicians condemn games as “too violent” and cry foul on the video game industry. Personally, I don’t think it’s right for them to tell me I can’t have fun just because they don’t, so I usually just ignore them, but this years top ten list, put out by the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility, is the most ludicrous piece of crap of it’s kind I’ve ever read. Thus it is my responsibility to go through this list game by game and give you my opinions on their opinions.

The first game on the list is Doom 3 from Id Software. Doom 3 is the latest version in the highly popular first person series, in which you are the only surviving marine on a base on Mars. Your mission is to shoot your way through the hordes of Hell to get off the base with your life and soul intact. I really don’t see why a religious group, a predominantly Christian one at that, would oppose a game in which you destroy the servants of Satan. Also, in the game lighting is poor, and players often have to switch back and forth between you gun and a flashlight. You’d think they’d have miner’s helmets or some sort of advanced technology, but instead they have laser cannons and Mag-lights.

The Second Game on the list is Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. If you caught my review two issues ago you would under stand why this game is on the list. I actually agree that this game is for the mature audience, but because of language not violence. The violence in this game is about as average as a pg-13 movie unless the player is really psycho. The gratuitous use of the “F” and “N” words is what I considered to be the cause of the games M rating.

The Third Game is Gunslinger Girls 2. This game is not going to be released in America and unless you know Japanese you probably won’t play it. Until I read this list I’ve never heard of it and wondered why the Interfaith are worried about Japanese games instead of sticking to the ones in America.

Half Life 2 came in at number four. Just recently released (four years overdue), the game has you playing as onetime military researcher Gordon. In the original Half Life you had to fight your way out of a secret military lab that had been taken over by interdimensional aliens and then US military launches an attack against you, as well. The sequel has you fighting alien invaders in a futuristic prototype city. My question, what’s wrong with killing aliens?Number five: Halo 2. Again, the player is fighting alien invaders as a member of a futuristic army. Apparently the Interfaith group likes alien invaders and hates games about killing them, a Heaven’s Gate connection maybe? Or do they just hate fun?

Coming in at the half mark, number six: Hitman: Blood Money. This game does not belong on this list for one simple reason: it won’t be released until next year. That’s right, they’re afraid of time travelers bringing this game back from the future and giving it to our children, we must ban time travel now!

Numero Siete: Manhunt. Not one of the Interfaith members played this game. I’m not kidding. It seems they banned it based solely on name, cover art, and perhaps a few screen shots. They have little to no idea of what you actually do in the game. Go figure.

Round Eight: Mortal Kombat. Due to lack of specificity I can only guess that they mean Mortal Kombat: Deception, the newest in the fighting game series. The Mortal Kombat games have only gotten prettier since their first incarnation. Unoriginality has been a key part of the series with the only improvement in each game is better graphics, and more characters and moves. If you look at it there are really only ten distinct characters and the rest are just variations with different color schemes, or names and contain the graphics for the same moves. The Mortal Kombat games have always been bloody but with their current 3D animations it just looks like Toy Story meets Friday the 13th to me.

Number 9 number 9 number 9 number 9: Postal 2. Postal 2 came out in 2003, and thus by video game years, its old. It did however feature the interesting premise and tag line that the game was “only as violent as you are.” It was actually possible to go through the entire game with out firing one shot. It was also possible to go through the game killing every thing in sight. While it can be a very violent game, it’s dated material; the average gamer doesn’t buy anything that’s over six months old (the exceptions being games that are labeled as “Greatest Hits” and games that they find in bargain bins and have fond memories of).

And last but not least Number Ten: Shadow Hearts: Covenant. Shadow Hearts is a World War I era, role-playing game (RPG). Now we all know mothers hate RPGs, because of the urban legends about Dungeons and Dragons (the student who killed their self after being unable to find reality again after some serious D&D); but my theory is that mothers hate this game even more because of the references to homosexuality in it. Yes, it’s true that within the game a player must search for gay porn in order to obtain new costumes for their puppets. Let me reiterate, you must find pictures of soft-core gay pornography hidden in peoples houses to get new dresses for little puppets one of the characters uses to fight. So it’s not really a question of violence but actually the theory that this game is going to be used to promote the homosexual agenda. If it wasn’t for that little fact Interfaith probably wouldn’t care.

There you have it, the top ten most violent games of the year. One is about killing demons, two are about killing aliens, another one is about being a criminal in an urban setting, another isn’t coming to America, one isn’t coming out this year, one game no Interfaith member actually played, one is only as violent as the player, one is just an average fighting game, and the last one features soft-core gay porn. If this isn’t a strange list then I’m not a connoisseur of digital entertainment, and I assure you I am. What annoys and confuses me the most are the groups of mothers against violent games. If they don’t want their children playing violent video games then don’t buy them. All of these games will not be sold to anyone under 18; however, some games are sold to older looking kids. If you’re 13 and look it, they’ll tell you to get a parent or take a hike. When I bought GTA San Andreas they asked to see my ID (I’m in college and I have a mustache and goatee) I was slightly surprised but also proud that they were enforcing the rating system (something most mothers say stores never do). In conclusion: don’t let overprotective psychotic mothers and the Church tell you what games to play.