I'm WeasleX(tm) and I've been a gamer since I was 5 years old. I remember writing code from PC magazines my dad had, I think the first one I completed was one modeled after the board game battleship. Since then I've been a gamer, from PC (mostly) to console's, I've been addicted to video games.
I build some games using RM2K3, and I have a custom built PC rig I've built myself. Thus, I think it's safe to say that for right now, I'm a PC gaming fan. Even if I own an Xbox360, and a PS3, the PC has remained my number one gaming device.
So that's me in a nutshell, besides the facts that I like long walks by the beach, getting caught in the rain, I'm not into vodka, I'm into champagne. lol
Looking up some things on the internet can be scary, and seeing so called 'Christian' forums are a bit of a fright for me. Now, don't get me wrong, religious beliefs are a great thing in this world, and I'm for freedom of speech and freedom of thought. With that said... I don't think some of these people have a clue what they are arguing about. They rant about this violent video game, and that violent video game, ranting on and on and on... Yet, I doubt they've picked up a controller, or a keyboard and had a throw down with any of the titles they seem to rant about.
ADULT OR NOT ADULT! THAT, IS THE QUESTION!
These people don't know that some games were made for adults in mind.
Would I let my child play Mass Effect 1? NO, he's under age and it does have nudity, he's too young for it.
Would I let my teen play it? Yes, he's old enough to comprehend what he's playing.
Does that make me a bad parent/person? NO! In fact, it makes me a responsible one for actually getting involved with my kids life.
It's like every media out there ever, yet we, like people with Alzheimer's seem to instantly forget that with movie's, books, ect. there's subjects that are appropriate for young people, and adults alike. An adult shouldn't have to be subjected to watching Sesame Street, a child shouldn't be forced to sit through Freddie Kruger. That's just the way it is, as an adult, I tend to enjoy a good sci fi game, or an action packed thriller like Bioshock, or Far Cry. Though a child should not play them till they are older, that's why we have the ESRB rating system. It's on the box, in plain English, maybe we should use it more often! RAWR!!!
By the way, ESRB, it's tougher than it is for a movie rating. I can get killing, swearing, heavy drinking in a PG-13 movie, but I get slapped with a mature rating if it's in a video game. For those less informed than most, here's a link to ESRB, read it, learn it, use it.
WHEN I WAS HIS AGE...
Dinosaurs roamed the earth, and you had to walk, bare foot, uphill, barefoot both ways in a blizzard, for miles, I get it. Pong was probably the rage for you, but times have changed, video games aren't just a child's toy anymore, in fact the average age of a 'gamer' is in their 30's. We're voting age, (HINT HINT REPUBLICANS/DEMOCRATS), we grew up with the Atari, or Nintendo and have graduated into something more. Just like every media form before and after, we need something for just us, we need something age appropriate for us.
WELL, ITS INTERACTIVE, SO THAT MAKES IT DANGEROUS.
I am sick and tired of every politician, evangelist, NRA, Nass Car Fan, ect. making this argument. You know what else is interactive, a gun, and last time I checked, games haven't been built to kill a person. I'm not a finger pointer, but it would seem to me, guns have been blamed for more deaths than that of a video game. Google a picture of someone that was once alive, and then shot dead. Google may just crash because of the volume of pictures. Seriously though, more people have died in Chicago in shooting related instance's than those serving in Afghanistan or Iraq combined in ONE YEAR ALONE, thats a statistic you can take to the bank. (I wish I was making this one up too...)
Yet, NRA claims guns don't kill people... People killed people. I'm pretty sure a gun freaking helped!!! These same people blame it on games, drugs, gangs, violence in society, everyone but themselves... Yet, gun violence keeps increasing as well as gun sales. Kinda makes you wonder who the NRA represents, certainly not gun manufacturers. (sarcasm) No, I'm not saying ban guns, but maybe, we need to grow up and start some down to earth, sensible gun control laws on a Federal level for once.
I'm getting off point though: The fact is, a video game is a form of media that is, in fact interactive. So are many other things in life, that doesn't mean we will instantly imitate what we see or do in a video game. Sim City is about planing and developing a city, that doesn't mean I'm going to instantly start becoming a city planner. GTA is about... well, it's one giant sandbox style game where you can do anything, most of it, very illegal, that doesn't mean I became a criminal overnight because I started playing it.
ART FORM SHAMART FORM!
Apparently, video games have become more and more of an art form, one that should be respected, but seldom are. Some are grotesque but make you ask very hard, yet important questions. Super Columbine Massacre RPG!!! Is actually a real game, that asks the user to take the roll of two killers at Columbine. It's based off of an actual event, and it was the first time gamers were apart of any form of important conversation. It makes you uncomfortable, but on purpose, while playing it. SCMRPG, was never meant to be entertaining, but since it was a video game, we tend to think that, as a rule, it should be. Yet, SCMRPG never was, nor was that it's intended purpose, it made you think, as you were taking the roll of a killer. Some of it made me very sad to play, because I knew this actually happened for real.
This game is, a good example of an art form seen in a video game, no where does it say you have to like it, but it's art none the less. There are other games out there that are similar in form, in that they have a message to say while playing it. Some are very interesting, some, I feel uncomfortable, playing, yet all are an art form in their own right and I have respect for a developer who has the monkey's to do something like this.
Yet, because it's a video game, because it's interactive, many who are outside the walls of 'gamers' see it as anything but pure utter crap. Ignorant interpretation, is still interpretation of an art form. I only feel pity for those who can't understand this form of art, and have found myself lacking in patients in dealing with them. I simply, walk away, you can hate a game with a message, but at least play the damn game to try and understand that message instead of, flat out, calling it crap. Your point would have more meaning, and many would at least, validate your argument because you played it. A good example of what I'm trying to say: Saying Michelangelo's David is pure pornography, without actually seeing it.
POINT!?! YA HAVE ONE?
Point is, you can't blame any form of media for making a person violent, media is of itself, not inherently dangerous. Sadly, because there are many who don't, or won't except video games as a media norm, will always want to see it's demise. Those who are ignorant or are intolerable to any media form, will always exist, I can't nor will I even try to persuade them to change their ways, I just don't have the energy to waste my time on that.
Still, every now and then, I need to rant, I need to get it out of my system. Instead of going out and 'killing everyone' because I played a 'violent video game' I, instead, rant on a pointless blog, because that how I, as a person who enjoys video games, deals with issues that bug me. That's just my two cents though, which is worth just that, two cents.