Violent Video Games

The debate is as old as video games themselves. In fact, it’s older, seeing as it was first about movies, TV, music or comic books. There are traditionally two sides: Those who think it corrupts our youth, and those who make and use it and think it’s a valid form of art (usually they have a lower age average). It should be pretty obvious that I’m on the pro-video-game side. So I’ll turn this on it’s head and seriously ask: Are we correct? Are video games truly not a problem?

The first point to this answer is “Yes”. I don’t think mass murderers become that way just because they played to much Counter-Strike. That’s just nonsense.

But look at the world around you: Using violence to solve problems is actually portrayed as a good idea. Movies that aren’t for kids, critics or romantic comedies tend to end with an epic fight of good versus evil, where the use of lethal force on the good side is actually cheered on. Killing “bad people” is considered “in”. The result? There are quite a few people who feel mistreated by society, and for whom the vandals in Paris some time ago are heroes.

Of course this problem cannot be traced back to only movies or video games. Mass media likes to talk about violent things, and books, comics, music and so on do like to do so as well. However, video games are a significant part of this. Part of the reason for that is that confrontations in video games are solved basically always through the use of force. There may be movies about Ghandi, but there is no such game.

Conclusion: I still think that violent video games are not the cause why people become mass murderers, and I like my explosions like anyone else. Still, we live in a culture where violence is accepted, and I think it’s safe to say that this affects people, and I think it’s rubbish to say that video games are not part of it.

Written on July 25th, 2008 at 06:33 pm


    New comments can no longer be posted because it got to annoying to fight all the spam.