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Others gamers who AREN'T down with all game violence?

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I see Dead Space being bandied around in this thread as a form of 'acceptable' violence in videogames because of the nature of the series ie. it's a sci-fi horror space thing where you're blowing up monsters rather than people, but that surely doesn't excuse the absolutely gratuitous physical abuse dished out to the few humans *in* the franchise which I've always found to be, frankly, deeply disturbing. I'll readily accept that it's just part and parcel of the genre and no different from any other work of horror you might go out and read or rent for yourself but since this is a thread for expressing our personal feelings on the use and abuse of violence in t'video games these days I'll go ahead and say it. Are those fantastically nauseating death scenes you get in things like Dead Space really bringing anything to the party except the fact that someone, somewhere, is willing to animate this sort of perversity?

Edited by CrazyBearMcGubbins

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Well body mutilation is ostensibly a huge part of trying to convey a type of horror, so yeah, I'd imagine in keeping with the theme it stands to argue that it just wouldn't have the same impact if a horror game didn't include it. Granted, there are many different aspects involved as well such as suspense, timing, and the like, so simply relying on gratuitous grotesque violence really won't get the same effect, and could be seen as lazy.

I think your post raises another interesting(and probably more rich) discussion involving the role of violence in video games and how it can be effective(or not) in transmitting a certain message within a or feeling within a given narrative without crossing the line into absurdity town.

Edited by Malaki-LEGEND.sys

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"It's just a game." What is that statement even supposed to mean?

That it's not real. Those aren't real people, it's not real blood, those aren't real injuries, and no one's really dying. It's meant to basically bring into question why people are likening the violence and death in a video game, to the actual, real violence and death against/of a living and breathing person.

Edited by The Coop

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I think your post raises another interesting(and probably more rich) discussion involving the role of violence in video games and how it can be effective(or not) in transmitting a certain message within a or feeling within a given narrative without crossing the line into absurdity town.

This is where something like Dead Space falls down and a game like Spec Ops:The Line, as has already been wheeled out as an example in this thread, proves itself as ultimately more effective. The former does an absolutely sterling job when it comes to atmosphere but I strongly object to the almost gleeful sadism inherent in the way the player character is punished with each failure. Obviously the message one assumes I am supposed to take from being graphically disembowled by space zombies is 'do not do this thing again'. But then my ability to progress through the game has already been denied me, and one would think that was incentive enough to not make such a hash of things next time round. On the other hand, the sight of an entire community of innocents with their flesh grotesquely burned from their skeletons by an il-judged white phosphorous attack in Spec Ops *did* have a role to play in the narrative beyond 'look how much of a gorefest we can make this shit'. Long story short, I find some of the death scenes in Dead Space deeply unpleasant to endure because there is absolutely nothing you can take away from it in terms of justification. It's violence for violence sake and comes across as little more than the gaming equivalent of one of those video nasties we were all supposed to have moved on from since the eighties.

It's probably worth noting, however, that simply because I find something unpalatable doesn't mean I consider it inherently 'wrong' or unworthy of being produced. I'll still play the Dead Space franchise and for the most part enjoy every moment of it. But does modern gaming have a gratuitous violence fetish? I think there's a strong case to be made that it does, and that it can well be detrimental to an experience.

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It's probably worth noting, however, that simply because I find something unpalatable doesn't mean I consider it inherently 'wrong' or unworthy of being produced. I'll still play the Dead Space franchise and for the most part enjoy every moment of it. But does modern gaming have a gratuitous violence fetish? I think there's a strong case to be made that it does, and that it can well be detrimental to an experience.

I don't think you have a very strong case for that argument. If you were to compare video games to movie, tv or even literary counterparts I think you would find that except *in extreme cases* such as resident evil or dead space, gratuitous, unnecessary violence is not widespread in the least.

If that's specifically the experience they're trying to give their consumer then it's not detrimental at all. If your preference is that you don't enjoy it that's fine.

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I don't think you have a very strong case for that argument. If you were to compare video games to movie, tv or even literary counterparts I think you would find that except *in extreme cases* such as resident evil or dead space, gratuitous, unnecessary violence is not widespread in the least.

If that's specifically the experience they're trying to give their consumer then it's not detrimental at all. If your preference is that you don't enjoy it that's fine.

I'm not saying it's my argument, and I'm not saying it isn't just as prevalent in *other* mediums either but I can certainly see a trend in the big triple AAA titles we get these days and putting players in control of characters who dish out brutal beatings apparently on a whim simply because that's what the market 'wants'. God of War, Assassins Creed, Tomb Raider, GTA et al. are all fundamentally underpinned by the idea of tasking the player to commit acts of increasingly realistically depicted violence. And, unlike films or TV, you are placing the burden of orchestrating these moments squarely on the shoulder of the participant. Also I'm not sure what else to call 'press X to rip opponent's spine out' if not gratuitous.

As far is it being detrimental to an experience is concerned I'm going to flag up the curious case of No More Heroes. Came in two flavours, one for delicate Asian and European sensibilities (which always struck me as faintly absurd given the reputations both territories carry for going the other way when it comes to depictions of graphic sexual content) and one for full-blooded American gore junkies. Being in Europe myself I played the former, where all the major kill scenes are robbed of their savagery by virtue of everyone exploding into clouds of magic dust, and duly had a gay old time of it carving mooks and bosses harmlessly up with my laser sword. A quick scout of Youtube tells me I really wouldn't have half as good a time of it with the uncut version, since suddenly you're jarred out of the relatively pantomime proceedings to sit through a scene where you behead an old lady or cut a girl's arm off. It's still over the top and obviously intended as satire of its own genre, but taking that leap from a cloud of fuzzy pixels to a portrayal of suddenly visceral brutality fundamentally changed the experience I was having with the scenes. One was enjoyable, the other distinctly uncomfortable. And, nine times out of ten, I am not playing a game to feel disgusted at my own achievements I am playing a game to have fun. Should saying it's a game's 'message' or 'ethos' to engender a certain response in its audience really be used as an excuse for this sort of thing? A game is specifically not a film or a book or a piece of provocative theatre. It's a game. A thing to take amusement from.

I suppose ultimately the question is whether or not one perceives these things as 'necessary' or 'acceptable' in terms of the overarching narrative construct of the piece. And obviously those examples all have particular sorts of stories to tell which necessitate a degree of violence. But you certainly cannot deny the proliferation of violence in gaming, and surely that's worthy of discussion if nothing else?

Also I'm sure someone will call me for flagging Tomb Raider up there as an example, but it generated all that controversy for a reason. Lara did get her Rambo on for the latest outing after all.

Edited by CrazyBearMcGubbins

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Tomb Raider's controversy if I recall had very little to do with the level of violence present, but instead with one particular scene early in the game where Lara is groped and the implication that rape was just around the corner. Of course this scene was also greatly taken out of context by critics who then decided to brand the game as sexist and harmful to women instead of understanding the severity/gravity of that moment in the game and what it meant within the context of Lara's growth as a strong character who, to paraphrase a song lyric, ain't nuthin' to fuck with. If we want to treat video games as an art form, this kind of criticism has to stop.

And I can't blame you for feeling uncomfortable with No More Heroes. It was a crappy, repetitive game... Which I guess makes Suda 51's continued career questionable. Bad jokes aside, given that the narrative and world of that game as well as the grit and nasty of all of its characters, I can't imagine the game not having gore all over the place. We're not talking about an "elegant" world like the original Star Wars trilogy or the UC Gundam series.

Edited by Malaki-LEGEND.sys

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I'll assume this topic is all about the later violence in games to this discussion ain't get broader. I feel that too.

One game from our previous generation that was consider real violent was Manhunt, those who replied feel that was violent for sure, but that game was proposed to be that way. What we seeing now is that games which supposed to be so violent are getting violent, maybe due an advance in technology, large developing crews or marketing reason, assuming that violent sells and games with no violence at all are underated.

This leads to unsatisfaction since we don't know what we are buying/playing. Even the sites we trust gave bad reviews or opinions related to our expectations in what is a good balance of violence in games. Anyone who are satisfied with the amount of violence in games should consider yourself lucky.

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