Alright, so this news popped up on the FP just about now. Telling us how gross and fucked up the game is (sorry, how "f*cked up" it is - mom might be reading, after all) didn't stop anyone from posting the news, it was oh so offensive and not okay and the moral soapbox was getting larger with every sentence. As a little note here: I like to read editorials, but I dislike when the headline already shoves down an opinion down my throat. I read editorials for opinions, not news. I'm an adult, I decide for myself what is "fucked up" and what's "not okay". The german censors already treat me like a baby. Okay? Cool.
But you know what? No. That game, HATRED, IS okay.
First off: we already commited multiple genocides in dozens of games. And aside from Spec Ops: The Line, most don't try to make you feel bad over it. How many times have we already run amok in Grand Theft Auto and just killed cops, hookers and civlians alike to let god sort them out? I'm pretty sure we all did that already. And we had fun. We did tried to reach the maximum stars, we did the Kill Frenzies - we did it all. We slaughtered them like cattle and not a second was wasted on how "fucked up" that is (except by Jack Thompson and his peers). This game seems to be that, only in condensed form. Postal 1 wasn't anything else but a "running amok and killing people"-simulator. It had basically no story and you just went around killing people. Postal 2 was again not much else, under a sloppy guise of satire (and you know what, I'm fine with satire). "It's satire" doesn't change the fact that you put a fucking cat, asshole first, on the barrel of your assault rifle and then mowed over a dozen peaceful protestants or mall goers.
Now people might argue that context is important. But really, what content was there in GTA? Oh, right, you play basically the almost worst kind of criminal every time. In the older GTAs you even didn't have a real story, just getting mysterious phone calls and doing the bidding of strangers. Someone tells you "Go kill that chump" and you go and kill that chump. In Postal you were simply running amok. Again: games like Spec Ops: The Line are very rare, as they give a lot of context and development.
You can even spin this though further, going into most shooters, and see that you are rarely more than a glorified walking genocide. Unless you completely ignore action games, we already are virtual mass murderers and we had mostly fun becoming them. Trying to swing the big moral flag NOW seems a bit hypocritic. Having stuff in games that would be highly questionable in regarsd to real life ethics is something that has always been done.
Remembering Postal 1 leads me to the next point: apparently it doesn't even do anything new. All we get to see is some bloody finishers. Really, that's it? It's not RapeLay. The main character doesn't shoot a pregnant woman in the stomach to watch the unborn child well out of the wound. The original Evil Dead movie had more explicit gore in it than this trailer so far. Of course, you don't have to like the Gore genre or bloody/gory games, but saying something is "not okay" just because of that is treating into the topic of censorship. And I think we all know how I think about that.
The only thing this games does so far is that it's upfront and puts the player in the shoes of someone who isn't even slightly a good guy. Even the ethical dubious characters like the GTA "heroes" had some scenes in them to redeem themselves to the player - be it by their actions or by humour. This game is upfront. You're a maniac who is sick of life and goes out to get shot down during his rampage. That's it. It's an unusual attempt, that is certain. But being this upfront is another thing that the game shouldn't be ACCUSED with.
And last but not least, lest we forget: games are art. Art may offend you. Art may even insult you. It's allowed to do that because it is Art. But it's important to fathom all the borders and even overstepping them. That is what development needs. Nothing was EVER achieved but just sitting with your thumbs up your ass in your little comfort zone. If some people want to create something just to shit on the political correctness, then that is as fine as it is with people not liking it. I think it might have come at a better time, but that is a different topic.
The thing is: this game won't take anything away from you. Stupid gory action movies are a staple of the cinema for ages already. Stupid bloody action games were tried to held back often, but they are coming and they will become a staple too. Just as much as excessive, dialogue heavy RPGs or deep Strategy games. And if anything especially the outlets should encourage the creation of a game. Let the gamers decide after release if they accept it or not. It's basically our equivalent to natural selection. But you know what's not okay? Trying to rile people up like this from the get go.
The only thing I'm going to agree with is that I'm embarrassed over this - but not over the existence of the game.
As a closing line: art is varied, that what makes it lively and valuable. Variation is trump. You might not like the result and that is fine too. But that doesn't mean the step of creation should not be undertaken. Creative endeavor is pretty much always worth the effort, because it helps to develop the medium. And that's not only okay, that's what we need. Because otherwise the artform will stagnate, and that will mean it will die. And nobody would want games dead, right? The game is okay. You liking the game is okay. You not liking the game is okay. You not wanting to play a bad guy withtout the context of a GTA is okay.
We will all be okay.
That said: if you really WANT to put yourself on Jack Thompson level, by all means, it's your right. But I think you're wrong here then.