Many people believe that recent spurs of violence in children are the result of violent video games. These people believe that Video Game Designers have a goal to design extremely violent video games to corrupt the minds of children. Not just are these accusations wrong, but examples and reasoning will show that violence is a useful tool in making video games.
One piece of evidence against violent video games is that they “… [cross] the line of good taste and shouldn’t be in the hands of children or young teens…” (Grossman 64). This is simply the opinion of the anti-violence activists. The only reason why they believe games do not belong in the hands of children is because they are not socially acceptable. “Socially acceptable” is just the combined opinion of what complete strangers believe is best for us.
The anti-violence protesters also said “… the influence of video games is the only possible explanation…” (Grossman 62). This is also the opinion of the activists, and nothing more. It is physically impossible for there to be only one possible explanation to any murder or violent act, because there are hundreds of variables that go into how or why a person commits a violent act. Also, no one can fully link video games to any violent act via hard evidence.
To correct some of these false accusations, a fellow game designer, Greg Costikyan, said “… games are not about violence. Games are about struggle. Because violence is the easiest way to create a struggle, many games are violent – but far from all” (Costikyan 51). His statement makes sense, because without struggle, a game isn’t a game, and therefore it is not fun. Also violence is not the essence of a video game, just some added flavoring. Even though too much violence is bad, “… there’s no way to avoid conflict entirely. No conflict, no struggle. No struggle, no obstacles. No obstacles, no work. No work, no fun” (Costikyan 50). Without a game being fun, there is no purpose for the gamer to go any farther in the game, and isn’t worth playing.
All human beings have a genetic impulse for a spur of violence for generations, mostly found in young males. Before, this antisocial violent behavior was thought to be barbaric, and is a main purpose for military enlistment: a way to release violent behavior in a way that is disciplined, controlled, and in use for defending your country. Now, a safer alternative for the military is video games. Video Games are “…satisfying their antisocial impulses in a completely harmless way.” (Costikyan 55). Video Games able people to release this violence in a way that will not hurt anyone, because this is all computer-simulated in virtual reality.
In conclusion, these accusations against video games are false, with poor excuses to back them up. To help clear up any questionable byproducts of playing such video games, such as better weapon accuracy, video games should be institutionalized within police and military training to boost marksmanship and get a clear advantage over the enemy. Recently the military started to use more games such as the game “First to Fight” for marine exercises. Even though people accuse violent video games as the source of shootings when the actual shooter should be blamed, video games that are built on violence are not actual games. Such examples as “Bathtub of Blood” and “Postal” are a disgrace to all Video Game Designers and gamers, and abuse a fragile tool used to make games more fun.
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