May 3, 2007

Hooray for video games!

There's lots of media attention towards video games, and not in a good way. First thing that was blamed for the VA Tech shooting, Columbine, etc. The media is starting to wake up and realize they can't toss all the blame in video games' basket and be done with it, though.

I personally don't play any of the FPS games that they mention- stuff like Halo, Counter Strike, etc., just doesn't interest me in the slightest. Some of it's due to vision (the ultra-realistic dark corridors and enemy headquarters are particular tough to see in, for example), but more of it is just an overall lack of interest in the genre. I CAN play them if I choose, but don't; the last time I played one of those games was probably back around 2000 or so at a LAN party. I got slaughtered, which was fine- it was fun with friends.

That doesn't mean I don't play games which can be violent. I've played Grand Theft Auto (owned 3 and Vice City) enough. I play NeverWinter Nights (NWN) with graphics on excessive (or whatever the highest 'gore' setting is). It's not designed to be blood and gore like the other games- I think it's laughable.

NWN is a great once-a-week event, getting together with a friend I see maybe once a year since he moved away and some other friends. It's currently my main social outlet besides instant messages (no work, no local schooling, no care for drinking/bars/clubs equals no real social opportunities). We joke around and have fun.

NWN is even a double evil! There's that naughty violence that everyone's so worried about now, and the whole D&D/fantasy thing everyone was worried about 20 years ago! (Ever see Mazes & Monsters?) Uh-oh!

Yet I (at least in the eyes of anyone I've talked to) turned out fine. I'm not gonna go run and grab a sword and slice apart my upstairs neighbors' cats. In fact, I'll be sitting here, brainstorming an idea for a fantasy story. Totally malevolent, evil person I am, no?

Sure, it might be a bit different for me. I grew up with text-based games like Rogue, NetHack, and Zork. I had the Nintendo and SNES and 'sweat' in my Mortal Kombat video games... and not a lot of detail at that. Compared to the realism of today's games, I can see how there might be a hint at more of a problem... but c'mon. Are we getting ready to blame Canada for this epidemic too?


  1. I LOVE South Park, but I had never seen Robin Williams do "Blame Canada". He does it sooo well! I loved it and I cheerfully sang along! Don't get me wrong, I don't blame Canada, I just like the song!!

  2. I'm so sick of them blaming everything from video games to music. Hell I use to listen to NWA when I was young but I'm not out there shooting cops. I played Mario Brothers growing up and I'm not out there stepping on turtles and mushrooms. Why can't they just accept the fact that we have some messed up people in the world and stop pointing the finger at our entertainment.