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Author Topic: On politics, sex, and video games  (Read 51734 times)

LiterSize

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On politics, sex, and video games
« on: 17 Dec 2004, 03:33 »

So the Governor here in IL wants to start issuing fines to retailers selling M rated games with heavy themes of sex and violence and other naughty things to minors.  I think he should focus on the CTA problem, personally rather than helping parents police their own children on access to a luxury item.  Isn't this such an age old topic?  

Video games bad!  They make our kids violent!  And do drugs!  And... and... pick up prostitutes to beat them up and then take over Vice City and San Andreas under a hail of bullets in a wake of blood, death and destruction!


.... my goodness. ;_;

Wysiwyg

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« Reply #1 on: 17 Dec 2004, 04:35 »

Games are bad. So don´t do game. Mmmmkay?

i remember some time ago when the government here decided to ban Carmageddon because it lead people towards violence, therefore responsible for the high death numbers in car accident. Rrrrrright... I mean, bad road maintenance, poor signaling, horrible school drivings and no fiscalisation had nothing to do with. It was the game´s fault! Oh, gfckyrslf.
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Switchblade

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« Reply #2 on: 17 Dec 2004, 04:42 »

It's been a long-held universal law of government and society that the guilty factor is NOT, in fact, such mundane things as lack of appropriate maintenance, cuts in funding, apathetic government figures and people not paying attention to the real issue, but rather, all that is wrong in the world can be attributed to a scapegoat phenomenon. computer games juswt happen to be the latest in a long string of phenomena that includes TV, radio, mobile phones and modern music. hell, they censored PRESLEY when he first appeared.

frustrating, but unavoidable.
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ForteBass

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« Reply #3 on: 17 Dec 2004, 07:35 »

But at the same time, these stores aren't supposed to be selling these games to minors in the first place. There's a reason there's ratings on these games, after all, so on one level a store should be held accountable for selling the game. Mind you, however, I am all about the parenting. I think it is up to me, as a parent, to decide what materials are appropriate for my children.  Which is why I fully intend to have my kids bring me every album/video game/book they buy just to make sure it is age appropriate.
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LiterSize

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« Reply #4 on: 17 Dec 2004, 07:51 »

Forte:

That's admirable.  Seriously.


The rating system... there was all this hubbub about how it's censorship this and blah that, even I thought it was kind of unnecessary at first, but then I used to work at Target and some 10-12 yr. old kid came in with his Mom looking to by GTA: Vice City.  The guy at the register looked at the kid and the game and told the mom, "Ma'am you know this game is rated mature, right?"
The mother was all shocked and asked her child "What kinda game am I buying for you?"

Needless to say, I don't believe little Johnny got to meet Tommy Vercetti.  The moral?  The rating system at least is an added measure to get parents more in the know about what their kids are being exposed to, and I see that now.

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« Reply #5 on: 17 Dec 2004, 08:01 »

It's a sad thing though because there are plenty of cases where the parents don't care. Case in point: My sister. She has five kids. Not a damn one of them is mature enough... nor old enough, quite frankly, to have GTA: Vice City. Yet, somehow, they do. That's not the stores problem, in the least. But lord only knows I wouldn't want to expose my eight year old daughter to things like beating and killing prostitutes Then again, I'm not my sister, so she probably thinks it's all cool.

As far as stores go, the guy in target did his job. The FYE here, I went in there a few times to see kids buying M rated games, and the kid is, like, 13.
One time I was actually standing on line behind a kid, no older than that, copy of GTA: San Andreas in hand. He was on the line that one of the store managers was ringing up customers at... not only did the manager sell it to him, he was talking about how cool the game is with this kid. It's because of things like that I agree the stores should get in trouble.
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« Reply #6 on: 17 Dec 2004, 09:19 »

I honestly don't see how any of that stuff has any of the adverse affects these "experts" say they do.  I know when I was 13 I was digging through my dad's playboys he hid in the garage... I'm not some sort of sex fiend nowadays because of it.  I played Wolfenstein 3-D as a 15 year old kid... I am not out screaming "Sieg Heil !" and mowing down people and dogs with a chaingun.  

In fact, I am rather tame (yeah, shocking, I know).

The problem isn't the fact that these games show us this stuff, it's how the children were raised, or chemical imbalances they have that cause them to be in the emotional state to do evil shit.  Getting rid of the games would do nothing to address these kids' problems.  They will only find some other "inspiration" to commit the crimes they do.  I know for a fact that watching Teletubbies for a couple hours every day would make me a LOT more homicidal than any gory 3-D shooter game.
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Phrozen

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« Reply #7 on: 17 Dec 2004, 09:35 »

Meh, I've been playing pretty violent games for a long time. I think I got Diablo(rated M for gore and nudity) when I was in 5th grade. I don't know if I should have had that game though...

I say the ratings are there for a reason, we don't let minors go into r-rated movies so why let them play M-rated games? I think it's ok to punish retailers who are not responsible.

And no I don't think video games make kids violent. they come out of the womb violent.
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3Z3VH

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« Reply #8 on: 17 Dec 2004, 09:46 »

Quote from: Phrozen
...
And no I don't think video games make kids violent. they come out of the womb violent.


I think they are raised violent, or develop a chemical imbalance.  I don't think they are "born" violent.
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happybirthdaygelatin

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« Reply #9 on: 17 Dec 2004, 11:19 »

shit i think it varies from child to child and parent to parent.  we live in a world that in alot of ways is sick and down right barbaric.  we live in society that white washes things a little too much but certainly not nearly as bad as it could.  

grand theft auto as a series is something that a mature and inquestive mind can look at as form of analysis of society in alot of ways.   i say mature because i think it's more true to say that only adults should say play it because that is bullshit as i'm sure there are more mature and intilgent adolcents then my self.

for required reading in the ninth grade i read (not all of i admit, i was really bad student technicaly) black boy by richard wright.  i know it details his life growing up in a racist segrated community but the only thing that actually has stuck with me the most since i've read it was the part where it describes how he tortures a cat.  

now that's fucked up.  do i think it should be taken out of schools?  regulated so only those at the age of 18 can read it?  FUCK NO.  i think that key to growing up and maturing is comming to terms with the fucked up things in the world.  to completly "protect the children" is to cause them the most harm.  to completly ignore the brutality of life just leads to ignorance. parents are an important part of this process, that's a big fucking duh.  learning to tell the difference between fiction, fact and what is percieved as fact are important.

besides violent video games are a good form of catharsis.  at least for me.
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3Z3VH

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« Reply #10 on: 17 Dec 2004, 11:58 »

Gelatin, I agree, but I actually believ it goes one step further than having no effects on those people...  In my honest opinion, I believe games such as this sate the people who have a penchant for the curiosity that leads them to do violent things, like beating up others or torturing an animal.

By reading about it, or playing a game that enacts such violence or evil, their curiosity about doing such things is sated, even if only enough to make them not need to do it.

I mean if you are craving a steak, and you eat a cheese burger, sure, you didn't get your steak, but at least you 'got your fix' of beef and you no longer have as strong a craving for that steak.

By removing these things entirely from a child's life, and vocally warning them NOT to play those kind of games, what is a kid going to do ?  That's right, reverse psychology... they are going to do whatever they can to see what they are being denied.  Denying them these games only piques their curiosity about them.

As another metaphor... If you want to stay healthy which do you do; Stay in a sterile bubble all your life, only to die from a small virus that snuck into your environment, or allow yourself to be exposed to lesser sicknesses and let your body build up it's own immunity, so when some deadly thing comes along, your body has a better chance of fighting it off ?

As a matter of perspective... I am involved with hosting one of the top 10 LAN parties in the US.  These parties are known for hosting the myriad of ultra-violent games, all of which have a teen rating or higher... You know how many fights I have seen at the hundreds of LANs I have been to ?  One.  Compare that to the number of fights I saw in High School... it was almost a daily thing if you knew where to look.  By the reasoning of these extremists who wish to ban violent games, we should also no longer allow our kids to go to High School, because it is obvious that it causes violence !
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Phobos

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« Reply #11 on: 17 Dec 2004, 12:48 »

As a societal delinquent, I'm going to do my part to purchase Mature rated video games for minors.

But, I think I'm obsolete, since most kiddies are more familiar with computers than their parents are, and will ultimately end up just pirating the game, either through P2P networks or just their friends at school, as I did when I was young (more so because I didn't have any money of my own to buy the games).
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Digs

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« Reply #12 on: 17 Dec 2004, 15:08 »

Outrage over something as arbitrary as games, movies, television...you all know what I'll say. Parental involvement, government enforcement of laws regarding sale of extremely inappropriate games, proper education. If a parent can't be assed to know a child's interests, it shouldn't fall to society and government, it should fall back on the parent. Like a hammer.
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DavidGrohl

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« Reply #13 on: 17 Dec 2004, 15:31 »

But what about the people who instead of going on a shooting rampage, take their anger out with a nice game of GTA or some shooter?!  What then!?

Newsbreak:  Violence is soaring in Illinois against this videogame ban, random unshaven nerds have emerged from their nests armed with assault weapons, we're issuing a city alarm alert: DONT LEAVE YOUR HOMES!

 but . . . if he thinks it'll work, let's not do something too rash to prove him wrong.  :)
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LiterSize

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« Reply #14 on: 18 Dec 2004, 02:41 »

Lock and Load!

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« Reply #15 on: 18 Dec 2004, 09:22 »

The thing is, the rating system on games is completely voluntary and intended for informational purposes.  It's up to the individual stores to decide what their own policy is regarding the games and up to the parents to decide what to do with it.  Personally I think parents should actually be responsible for parenting their children rather than forcing the state to.

Also bans on sales of violent games have universally been struck down by the courts as infringing upon the first amendment.
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Bailey

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« Reply #16 on: 18 Dec 2004, 12:21 »

The way I see it, the store should enforce the ratings on the games, and not sell things rated M to underaged kids. That way, if they really want to get it, they're going to drag their parents in to buy it for them. At that point, if the parent doesn't read the label and buys it for them anyways, its no longer the stores responsibility. If the parent does see the M rating, and takes an honest look at it, and makes a decision based on that, then it still isn't the stores responsibility but at least I can have a bit of respect for that parent.

Personally, when I was like, five, Terminator was my favourite movie. That and the Nightmare on Elm Street movies. The thing is, my mom watched them with me the first time, and explained to me the difference between imagined/fictional and real. "Something like this could not happen because...". The biggest impact that's had on me is the fact that sometimes I find movies like that really funny for the fact that they are just too fictional. Like that scene in The Ring with the horse on the ferry? Comedy gold, IMO. Most of that movie was.
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« Reply #17 on: 18 Dec 2004, 13:20 »

Yea, but then you have 18-24 year olds buying games for minors, or even selling them for profit to minors.  The games still get into the house, and the unattentive parent is none the wiser.  Just take responsibilty for watching your kid and everything will be fine.
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ForteBass

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« Reply #18 on: 18 Dec 2004, 13:35 »

Nobody is disputing that most of this falls on the parents. Of course it does, because the parents are supposed to be responsible for their kids.  But, there is a little something known as a "social conscience."  And it's because of this that stores should be held responsible for ignoring that.  It's not something to completely cast on either side of the fence.  As far as people purchasing M rated games fr minors: People buy cigarettes and beer for minors too... doesn't make that any less illegal, now does it?
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Phobos

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« Reply #19 on: 18 Dec 2004, 15:38 »

Quote from: DavidGrohl
Yea, but then you have 18-24 year olds buying games for minors, or even selling them for profit to minors.  The games still get into the house, and the unattentive parent is none the wiser.  Just take responsibilty for watching your kid and everything will be fine.



Oh, see, I never thought about making a profit on it...  thanks!

Quote from: ForteBass
People buy cigarettes and beer for minors too... doesn't make that any less illegal, now does it?


Belize is a good place to buy cheap alcohol, and Japan is a good place to buy cheap cigarettes.  You can bring them over here and sell them to all sorts of smokers / drunks (minors and adults) and turn a nice profit!  Last pack I bought in Japan cost me ~Y120!
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ForteBass

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« Reply #20 on: 18 Dec 2004, 16:19 »

That was so far off my point, it's not even funny.
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Phobos

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« Reply #21 on: 18 Dec 2004, 18:29 »

Quote from: ForteBass
That was so far off my point, it's not even funny.


That was intentional.  I don't care about the legality issue, I follow the money!
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3Z3VH

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« Reply #22 on: 20 Dec 2004, 09:40 »

Quote from: Phobos
...
Belize is a good place to buy cheap alcohol, and Japan is a good place to buy cheap cigarettes.  You can bring them over here and sell them to all sorts of smokers / drunks (minors and adults) and turn a nice profit!  Last pack I bought in Japan cost me ~Y120!


You don't need to go that far... If you go ANYWHERE outside the country, you can hit the duty-free shop and get the same prices.  Both are really cheap everywhere, it's just the taxes that make them expensive.  Duty-free means no taxes, means CHEAP !
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devils_daughter

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« Reply #23 on: 20 Dec 2004, 09:54 »

Rating should be more of a guideline than a law. There's 10 year old kids that could watch/play these rated things and be fine psychologically but there's adults who can hear about killers on the news and suddenly we have copycat killers. What are we gonna do, ban the media? When I was 4, every afternoon we'd all watch this kids show in school but before that we'd have to watch the news. This was right in the middle of the Bosnia war so we were watching corpses in the gutter and people getting shot, this was reality. When they gonna start rating the news, coz the things I saw then could be seen as a lot more damaging then things in many games/movies.
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LiterSize

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« Reply #24 on: 20 Dec 2004, 14:18 »

It's just too easy to blame something... don't even get me started on the superbowl flap last year... watching grown men smack each other around and cause physical damage is a lot LESS harmful than a BREAST, apparently.


I just don't follow the reasoning.  I don't mind the rating system because that's what gives me an idea of what to expect, but an outright ban?  Jesus.

devils_daughter

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« Reply #25 on: 20 Dec 2004, 14:38 »

Quote from: LiterSize
It's just too easy to blame something... don't even get me started on the superbowl flap last year... watching grown men smack each other around and cause physical damage is a lot LESS harmful than a BREAST, apparently.




Even the British press went crazy about that, so much so that I still haven't seen the pic. I'm a little confused by people being so offended by a breast, people appear to forget sometimes that breasts were evolved for feeding babies (just the thought of doing that is painful!) and not as sexual objects. It's only through societies over sexualisation of them that that image was offensive. Tribes in Africa and other places grow up surrounded by exposed breasts and it doesn't do any damage to them does it??!? ok...rant over
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LiterSize

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« Reply #26 on: 20 Dec 2004, 18:18 »

DD:  You aren't missing much with the pic, don't worry ;)


Where does all this start, seriously.... don't get me wrong I don't want my godson playing GTA when he's 5 but the exposure has been "oh these games are horrible, and they create mass destruction!"  Like war?  Like, crime?  Gee, I see those on the news every hour, on the hour.  I read it in the paper.  I see pictures plastered and rerun 5 times on the news.  Mass destruction like a president?

See, as penny-arcade put it, I can only see the real violent tendencies coming from people that play BAD games that they feel they wasted money on. :)

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« Reply #27 on: 21 Dec 2004, 04:32 »

what's scary is..

a couple of years back, my brother got a hold of my copy of GTA and he was affected by it, my parents had to ban him from playing it because he got really angry and abusive after playing it for any length of time.. it never affected me in that way *shrug*

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« Reply #28 on: 21 Dec 2004, 09:58 »

Like I've said before, it's easy to place full blame on one side or another. But, really, the blame has to go everywhere, equally. Parents, retailers, game companies who actually do market these things to a very young audience. There's not a lot of them, but there are ones that do.  
As I've said before, one day I will have children of my own. I will be taking responsibility for what they see in their childhood.  I can only hope others parents are willing to do the same.
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happybirthdaygelatin

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« Reply #29 on: 21 Dec 2004, 10:34 »

responsibility.  exactly.  i hardly feel responsible enough to take care of my self so i'm the last person i'd trust with the raising of a child.  hell, last night i stayed up till one in the morning playing video games and drinking when i knew i had to be up at six for work, i didn't cook my self breakfest, i don't clean up after my self on a day to day basis.  so yeah, fuck.  there was a point to this and i got distracted.

basicaly i think age restrictions and or guidlines is the best bet and it's enforcement but there are "bigger fish to fry" as they say.
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Mr Pink

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« Reply #30 on: 21 Dec 2004, 13:52 »

As an American I don't believe in raising my children to become responsible healthy members of society; I believe that's the governments job. Also as an American I don't believe in the environment or taxes.
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Jamoky

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« Reply #31 on: 21 Dec 2004, 22:46 »

Amen to that, Mr. Pink, and god bless America.
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sliptape

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« Reply #32 on: 22 Dec 2004, 09:32 »

Quote from: Bailey

Personally, when I was like, five, Terminator was my favourite movie. That and the Nightmare on Elm Street movies. The thing is, my mom watched them with me the first time, and explained to me the difference between imagined/fictional and real. "Something like this could not happen because...".


But what about games like Splinter Cell or Full Spectrum Warrior?
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Mnementh

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« Reply #33 on: 22 Dec 2004, 10:14 »

I'm not sure the games ratings are binding like movie ratings.  I think the responisible party is ultimately the parent.
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happybirthdaygelatin

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« Reply #34 on: 22 Dec 2004, 11:02 »

i'm kind of disapointed in the lack of discusion of sex in video games in this thread.  i mean, sex is in the title so here we go.

the human body is great to look at.   and to a certain extent i feel that games could go alot further of portraying the nude body (or even partialy nude etc) in a way that doesn't just objectify both of the sexs.  the most erotic organ is the brain.
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« Reply #35 on: 22 Dec 2004, 12:17 »

Quote from: happybirthdaygelatin
... the most erotic organ is the brain.


So "mind-fuck" isn't just a clever expression ?
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ForteBass

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« Reply #36 on: 22 Dec 2004, 12:24 »

I suppose mind-fuck in that sense requires skull-fuck
*squik*

Also, sex is for yes.
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Digs

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« Reply #37 on: 22 Dec 2004, 12:40 »

Quote from: 3Z3VH
So "mind-fuck" isn't just a clever expression ?
I have seen the depths of the internet, three-zee. Every time I see that phrase or hear it, I see horrors from the mind and drawring hand of another human. Someone who thought it was hot. Gag.
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« Reply #38 on: 22 Dec 2004, 12:59 »

I always just remember the scene from Grosse Pointe Blank...

"I'm going to shoot you in the head and fuck the brain-hole !"
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happybirthdaygelatin

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« Reply #39 on: 22 Dec 2004, 13:50 »

Quote from: Digs
I have seen the depths of the internet, three-zee. Every time I see that phrase or hear it, I see horrors from the mind and drawring hand of another human. Someone who thought it was hot. Gag.


le gag.  so much for having an imagination and it supposdly being a good thing.

mindfuck isn't really that clever.  squik wins.
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ForteBass

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« Reply #40 on: 22 Dec 2004, 13:53 »

squik is the greatest noise ever.
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happybirthdaygelatin

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« Reply #41 on: 22 Dec 2004, 14:06 »

indeed!  i'm still giggley thinking of it.
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sliptape

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« Reply #42 on: 23 Dec 2004, 10:23 »

Quote from: Digs
Quote from: 3Z3VH
So "mind-fuck" isn't just a clever expression ?
I have seen the depths of the internet, three-zee. Every time I see that phrase or hear it, I see horrors from the mind and drawring hand of another human. Someone who thought it was hot. Gag.


I think I might've seen this, too. And yes, it was really disturbing.

Sex in videogames? Do those japanese dating sims count? I've never played one, though...honestly.

So has anyone actually played Rumble Roses? ahahahahah
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On politics, sex, and video games
« Reply #43 on: 23 Dec 2004, 14:23 »

Slip:  There were a few brave reviewers out there, and let me just say... the games are f***ed up.  There are some sites out there that have little simulations based on these games, some good, most bad.  Either way, there's a lot of sex in games, just not in the US.  Dead to Rights has an AWESOME DDR/stripper scene, which is kinda cool and even has a SMALL purpose.  

Let's see, GTA, E3 girls, morgan webb, anime-styled video games, fighting games... the sex is there... woohoo!

happybirthdaygelatin

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On politics, sex, and video games
« Reply #44 on: 23 Dec 2004, 15:04 »

by movie standards though the sex in gta is pg-13
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Spike

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« Reply #45 on: 23 Dec 2004, 18:46 »

I remember that blockbuster had a section on a membership application that basically said "my child can rent m rated material." As long as there is some way that something like that can be implemented, I don't care about making the laws tighter.
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Ozymandias

On politics, sex, and video games
« Reply #46 on: 25 Dec 2004, 19:49 »

Some people really can be affected by videogames to the point of becoming violent sociopaths who view life as a game. One of my favorite books is Breakfast of Champions and, while it is a ridiculous piece of fiction, it raises a few good points about the suggestability of an unstable mind.

On the other hand, most people won't be affected like that. The average American can sit down, play a nice game of GTA: San Andreas, be slightly amused at the disturbing lengths of violence you can go to, but ultimately get their enjoyment from the fact that it's a genuinely good game with a wry sense of humor.

Americans both do and don't need to be protected from themselves and finding that balance between censorship and safety is extremely difficult. Banning games(which many other countries do) is a bit much, I think, but enforcing the industry's self-imposed rating system doesn't seem like such a terribly bad idea. A lot of parents are huge idiots and trying to educate many of them is a hopeless cause. My sister has bought her 10 year old son ever single GTA game. I cringe when I watch him play them because, he's a freaking 10 year old playing GTA games.

However, I think the rating system needs to be adjusted. There's a very wide gap between Halo 2 and GTA:SA, but they're both rated M, and the only way for a game to be rated AO is to actually feature graphic sexual acts, which is utterly ridiculous. Hell, I'm not even sure about that. It might have to involve brutally bludgeoning hookers to death, then having sex with their skull. The system is a bit broken.
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jhum101

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On politics, sex, and video games
« Reply #47 on: 26 Dec 2004, 19:50 »

I used to think that video games couldn't hurt anyone, as most individuals can discern fiction from reality.
But one time, I was playing GTA, and was on one of those crime sprees, where you see how long you can last without dying, and how many stars you can get. During this game, I was basically trying to shoot all the cops and swat teams and such.
I did this for 30 min or so, and then got bored, and walked to dinner with some friends. On the way there, I saw a cop.
The strangest feeling came over me, after seeing that cop, but whatever that was, I certainly did not like that feeling.
So now, I basically accept the fact that playing violent video games does condition you. Its kinda like what happened in A Clockwork Orange, except, instead of violence being associated with nausea, like their treatment, violence comes with praise and accomplishment, and a "good job!".
Censorship is not my thing, and I agree with many, that violent video games are fine for mature individual. But we need to acknowledge that these games play a part in conditioning the player. And it is still unclear how this conditioning can affect children, but we need to be cautious, and make sure we are not on a path to desensitizing children to violence.
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Phrozen

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On politics, sex, and video games
« Reply #48 on: 27 Dec 2004, 00:23 »

One thing I've noticed, and this especially true in America, is that there is a wierd perspective on sex and violence in film and video games. Put sex in a game and you will automatically get an M or even the dreaded AO rating. Put violence in a game and you'd have a hard time pushing over a T and maybe an M. You see the same thing in film, it is impossible to get a nc-17 rating for violence. It's never happened to my knowledge.

So, so many people say that America is a culture steeped in violence and that we are prudes because we make sex taboo. I on the ohter hand believe that both are taboo. Copious violence is not something that is praiseworthy and neither is gratuitous sex. I know my view are in the minority here but I think a decent case study can be made out of Japan.

I like to read the Mainichi Daily News which is a daily paper (mainichi means every day), and often come accross some of the most disturbing articles I've ever read. Japan, as a culture, is incrediblyy oversexed, they always have been. they have also been steeped in violence thanks to video games and wonderful movies like Ichi the Killer. In the end I believe that neither violence nor Sex should be made readily available to people that are impressionable and unable to comprehend the difference between fiction and nonfiction.
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Mnementh

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On politics, sex, and video games
« Reply #49 on: 27 Dec 2004, 03:59 »

Quote from: ForteBass
Also, sex is for yes.


except with minors.
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