So, some of this
should've been up and posted last week, but the Thanksgiving holiday
ruined those plans. So, let's just ignore any old references
and consider this new, ok? Ok. So, as always, I'm Malik,
the bitchy one.
Now, as it
I was thinking
that this week would be different than usual with DS related stuff.
I mean it is rare when a new system arrives and doesn't have a
bitchable trail behind it of all it's short-comings. Well, as you've
seen from my posts this week, there is nothing to bitch about with
the DS. It is gold. So, I found a different direction to head
towards; I'm Malik, and here come the Bitchings.
How to Make a
F$#@ed Up Game
I was checking out
technology section on Monday and came across this mess. Read the
link. Go ahead. Done? Ok, you should know where this is going, but
let me say it anyways since I'm so pissed off that morality could've
sunk this low in the geek world.
Games, a Scottish game publisher, is releasing as a $10 download, a
game called "JFK: Reloaded". In this travesty of an excuse
for a game, we are put into the role of Lee Harvey Oswald.
Here's a quick
history lesson for you all. We have had 3 or 4 presidents who have
been assassinated in American history. One of the most memorable is
the assassination of John F. Kennedy, due to the recent and highly
controversial theories behind his unfortunate and grizzly demise.
Basically, the facts (when you throw out the conspiracies) point to
Lee Harvey Oswald climbing to the sixth floor of the Texas Book
Depository with a blot-action riffle. Then he proceeded to
assassinate JFK as his motorcade drove through downtown Dallas.
However, many conspiracy nuts have decided to take a unique look at
events over the years to include theories of a second gunman on a
nearby grassy knoll (hillish type place), magic bullets (bullets
made out of ice that would melt and vanish once fired into a
body...which doesn't work, and was covered brilliantly on the
Discover Channel's Mythbusters, last season), time travel, aliens,
and all of that illogical bullshit.
So, in JFK:
Reloaded, you are given the assignment to...I can't believe this
shit...playing the role of Oswald, aiming, firing, having to deal
with the bolt-action slowness of his riffle, and all other
surrounding circumstances. Those who are able to recreate the
assassination with the most realism, are also
being...sigh...rewarded. Traffic Games is actually giving away a
prize of $10,000 to the virtual assassin who can best recreate the
assassination as it actually took place.
Not only is this
game trying to use realism, which is a lightning rod to those
hippies who say that games can train people to become killers. This
game is even having you recreate such a brutal and dark era in
American history that involves you trying to get entertainment from
virtually killing an American icon and leader.
It's hard to even
put to words what this type of immoral bullshit makes me feel. Plus,
this is not just some long forgotten even in the past. This is an
event that people still look back at and remember..."Where was
I when JFK died? I was...". This is not a subject matter to be
used for entertainment. Definitely, having you play the role of the
bad guy is going beyond the realm of reason and into pure sadistic
moneymaking for Traffic Games.
Some people say
there is a time and a place for everything. That is partially true.
The right time for a game dealing with the death of such an
influential and idolized individual as JFK is not while anyone of
that generation is still alive. The time is also not a time when a
controversial presidential election just took place. I guarantee
that is someone decides to attempt an assassination of Bush, this
game will, along with GTA, face a lot of the blame and pointless
finger-pointing. Also, the place is definitely not the country that
saw the game's victim as their leader.
In fact, something
like JFK: Reloaded is not morally good from the day JFK was elected
Is there no sense
of morality left in the game industry? To push the envelope, as has
been done for the last 5 or so year, with virtual people in real
conflicts was bad enough. But to have one person play the role of a
brutal assassin in a real assassination is beyond the realm of what
is acceptable...it's delving into the realm of what is insane for a
developer to make.
So, the solution,
plain and simple, is for Traffic Games to pull their heads out of
their asses, to go f$%# themselves, and to leave us all alone. If
you can't play nice, then get the f%$# off of my playground (the
playground being games).
Facts...No, The Fiction
So, once again, as
reported by MSNBC.com, a game watchdog group, or as I call them,
a group of out of touch with reality hippy bastards who would rather
censor than learn, met Tuesday in Washington DC. This group, which
consisted of everyone's' favorite (sarcasm a-plenty), Joe Lieberman,
took particular aim at some important and good points; these
included how parents need to be educated about the game ratings
system and they need to watch their children...all I can say to that
is, "no shit". However, at the same time, the same old set
of misconceptions is being carried out that are causing harm to the
First off, you
don't really vow to avenge your mother's death. In fact, you sorta
tap-dance around that whole subject for the entire game. You never
find out (sorry, this is a slight spoiler) the detail of her death
beyond some circumstantial evidence. For the most part, the closest
you get to this "vow" is to say that you don't stand for
this and that you want (key word being "want")
As for the
important part, however. You don't get points for killing cops. In
fact, the game penalizes you for killing cops, in a sense. When you
commit a crime, you will have the cops on you, which means the game
just got harder. There are no damned points in any GTA game, beyond
money, which is never carried by police officers. In fact, all you
get from killing a cop, besides a wanted level increase, is a pistol
and a night stick (which are both quite useless early on in any GTA
game...also, VC was the first with night sticks).
By killing a cop
and thus raising your wanted level, all you are actually doing is
making the game harder (which is called a punishment, not a reward,
by almost any line of thinking, including actual psychology...it
would be a positive punishment; you "gain" difficulty,
which would "deter" you from doing said action
again...positive for the gain and punishment for being a deterrent).
This, in turn, only makes it harder to accomplish your actual goal;
which doesn't include points, but is actually as simple as
progressing the story. While it is true that there are a couple of
cops in SA that you are supposed to kill to gain progress in the
plot, their actions are outside what would be legal and therefore
these cops cannot be viewed as "cops" anymore and should
be viewed as criminals.
Also, beyond there
being no points in a GTA game, it should be noted that carjacking is
not something that you get either rewarded or punished for. It is
simply part of GTA:SA. In fact, there are only a couple of cars that
you are actually told to steal to progress the game and the majority
of vehicles you take are not officially defined as being owned by
anyone. You could play most of a GTA game without stealing a single
car that has an obvious owner. You could get by, for the most part,
with only using cars parked on the side of the road, and since
ownership is not stated, you could always assume that CJ, Tommy
Vercetti, or GTA3 Guy own said vehicles and have just parked them
around the city.
See, while the
watchdog groups can make assumptions, so could I. I prefer, however,
to not assume anything (assuming makes an ass out of you...it
doesn't do anything bad for me since I don't assume and I don't fall
for these half-assed assumptions). However, these assumptions are
what leads people to the stupid conclusions that GTA trains children
to kill, it teaches us to frequent hookers (I can't believe that
article didn't touch the whole taboo subject of hookers in GTA).
Well, like I
stated, assumptions are the main problem. However, first off, I
would like to say that this watchdog group at least made the right
conclusion on one area of this subject; parents do need to watch
their children. Of course to say otherwise (which has been done by
some really stupid people) to contrary to the meaning of what a
parent is in our society...or at least what a parent should be. A
parent is a guardian who is supposed to raise their children, not
just pop them out and let them run wild and free.
assumptions are made about games that show them in a more negative
light than they deserve, the line is being crossed. However, games
require such a large investment in time and patience, as opposed to
other forms of entertainment, that this could be hard to solve. With
moves, for example, that deal with "bad" behavior (like
any Mafia based movie, like The Godfather, Goodfellas, etc), it only
takes 2-3 hours to watch the move and see the actual entertainment
and quality of the film. A game like GTA:SA requires a good 30 or
more hours of some rather frustrating game play to fully understand.
So, these idiots who say that killing police is rewarded may be
excused as not as much stupid and illogical as just being ignorant
asses who refuse to investigate the matter they are trying to
In reality, a game
is something that is equal in entertainment value to any other media
and thus it should be treated in the same way when investigating if
it has any merits. Which makes this incredibly ironic since SA
actually has some rather upright messages (such as a strong
anti-drug theme, how many of CJ's friends stick with him, how CJ is
trying to raise his family out of the ghetto and get them into a
more respectable life free from thug crimes, how racial barriers can
be broken down as CJ and Zero, a very white geek, and Wu Zi Mu, a
very Chinese triad leader, become good friends despite the obvious
racial tensions that surround the world of San Andreas, etc).
So, with this all
in mind, I feel the actual solution is two-fold. The first part was
said by both this watchdog group and by the game industry; Parents
need to watch and raise their children.
The second part is
that these overly conservative groups that like to assume and be
ignorant should simply f$#% off. Until they are ready to investigate
the real nature of what they are trying to police and censor, their
opinions are no more valid than those of anyone else...in fact,
their opinions are less valid than those of us geeks who have played
the game and understand what it's about. You don't hear me saying
that Lieberman is an immoral ass even though so many politicians end
up involved in scandals and so many old white guys in suits partake
in overlooked crimes (like corporate crime) every day. I won't say
that because I feel people should be free from judgment for things
they have not done and that assuming and forming baseless
conclusions will only hurt relations between races, genders, ages,
and social classes.
So, this is late
and all that, but that's why today's post is filled with my own
little extra bit of bitchiness. Anyway, lack of sleep and
stress is telling me to sign off. So, feel free to write
me or put it on the forums,
if you think you've got something to say about all of these f%$#ed