Tuesday, June 23, 2009
VIOLENCE AND CHILDREN
Videogames are often accused of showing too much violence, particularly when they’re used by younglings. As a developer, I use to get mad when I hear that and I see how those same parents allow their children to watch violent movies without remorse.
I’ve just watched ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’. According to my recount, 24 people are injured along the movie. 51 dies, and 10 of them are directly killed by the main character, Dr. Indiana Jones. And that’s one of those ‘family movies’ that all parents will be happy to let their children watch. Both in games and movies the user emphatises with the main character, so in a way you’re also the killer of those 10. At least I felt happy when they died and my favourite archeologist of all times could go on with his quest.
Leaving aside hypocrisy, I think the whole point of this is motivation. You can’t doubt of the good intentions of Indiana Jones. He fights nazis (evil by definition), and fights for saving precious artifacts so they can be kept safely in a museum. On the other side, users often impersonate characters in games who have no motivation for killing, or a really thin one.
Maybe that’s all we developers need to work on. I remember Sonic got some ‘Protect the children’ awards because when you kill an enemy, a little smiling animal was released. That’s should be enough for kid’s games. For adult games, hypocrites will continue bugging around.