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Writer demands more realistic violence in videogames

5:30 PM on 12.28.2009 // Jim Sterling

While mainstream media outlets rally the braindead public against so-called "realistic" videogame violence, one comic book writer has gone in the opposite direction -- criticizing videogames for not being realistic enough with its more barbaric content. However, Landry Walker also notes that perhaps society is not ready for such games. 

"I’ve been shot at a couple of times," he explains. "... In each instance, the bullets missed. Lucky me. Because there were no handy first aid packs or carefully planted green herbs lying around waiting. If I had been shot, I expect it would have been amazingly unlike a video game. Assuming the bullet did not inflict irreparable harm to my body, the experience of actually being shot (let’s assume a grazing strike to the shoulder) would have likely done irreparable harm to the cleanliness of my pants. 

"... I don’t want any of this out of some overbearing concern that we as a society are allowing ourselves to become numb to the grim realities of blah blah blah. Nope. I want a game that recreates that insane rush of endorphins and adrenaline or whatever it is after hearing a simple bullet crack past your ear. That’s what games should be. So real that I just have to put down the controller for a minute because some part of my lizard brain is shaking in disbelief over the scenario I somehow managed to survive."

There are pros and cons to realism in games, of course. On the one hand a tense, hyper-realistic thrill ride would be potentially amazing. On the other, is real-life murder all that fun? Would it be enjoyable to get shot in the shoulder and then lose the use of your arm? Interesting, certainly, but a good laugh? It would take a lot of work and effort to effectively make that realistic a game. I'm certainly all for somebody attempting it, though.

Video Game Violence: What Do Gamers Really Want? [Elder Geek via GamePolitics]

Jim Sterling, Former Reviews Editor
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