Moderator: Moderators

Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Xbox One, 360 and the Original Xbox. If it's on Xbox it's in here.
XBLColonel Red
PSNColonelRed
112847
167
5/200
5/200
200/200
965/1700
50/90
Posted 10,000 times
posted an average of 10 messages a day for a week
start a thread with over 15 pages of replies
posted 50 times to the tech forum
been a member for 9 years
been a member for 8 years
start a thread with over 5 pages of replies
been a member for 7 years
started 5 threads in the Tech Forum
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby Colonel Red on Tue Nov 17, 2009 7:43 pm

In HG Wells’ The Time Machine, the Eloi lead a simple life. They never read, they never question, they never learn. Living according to a doctrine of serene hedonism, any sense of responsibility or consequence has long been excised from society while they are fed and kept, like cattle, their existence facilitated by the cannibalistic Morlocks. Advocates of the notion that ignorance is bliss should note: closing your eyes doesn’t keep you safe.

There’s a school of thought that would suggest to you that the opposite is true. Exposure to ‘wrong’ forms of media can be socially damaging, we are warned. It was books in Wells’ era; travel through time and videogames present the same moral questions. This is what we’re seeing with startling hysteria following the release of Modern Warfare 2, as MPs squabble in the Commons over whether or not this kind of thing should be allowed.

"I am absolutely shocked by the level of violence in this game and am particularly concerned about how realistic the game itself looks", said Keith Vaz MP. In response, Tom Watson MP defended the existing classification systems – the game is rated ‘18’ by the BBFC – but made sure to distance himself from the infamous airport scene in particular, describing it as “deeply repulsive”. Despite founding the ‘Gamer’s Voice’ pressure group on Facebook, even he seems not to appreciate that repulsion is precisely the intended response.

The scene in question portrays a covert operation to infiltrate a terrorist cell. To maintain cover, the player is forced to be complicit in the murder of innocent civilians at an airport. In context, it asks you to question how far a nation should go in defence of its own interests, whether or not the cost can ever be too high. It’s a thoroughly unpleasant experience but, much like any film that attempts to evoke the realities of war, it is relevant and thought-provoking.

Of course, such common sense can be hard to come by. Typically, people unfamiliar with the medium of videogames tend to make two erroneous assumptions. Firstly, this game, like all others, is intended for use by children. Secondly, the only purpose of games in general is to elicit enjoyment. By logical deduction, this game is teaching our children to enjoy participating in acts of terrorism. But why does such ignorance seem to represent mainstream opinion?

This week, BBC 1’s The Big Questions featured several such uninformed characters. Despite playing World of Warcraft himself, Reverend Stephen Lowe asserted that “some people get the thrill of that [violence] – I think that’s actually sick...and I don’t think it should be in a game”. Beneath his apparent presumption that gamers are not unusually misanthropic or sociopathic and cannot be trusted with content of this kind (just in case), it’s hard to deduce any cogent argument.

But it is comforting to know that ignorance like this at least crosses the religious divide; countering the suggestion that holy scripture has provoked far more violence than any indulgence in computer games, Favan Mohammed of the British Muslim Forum said without irony: “It’s the way people misinterpret holy scripture...it’s taken out of context.” There is the root of the truth, even if nobody recognised it – games are only as inappropriate as a person’s interpretation of them, just like anything else.

The notion that Modern Warfare 2 intentionally glorifies violence is perverse and wrong-headed. Certainly there are many games which are guilty of the accusation; if anything, Infinity Ward’s game lends a human context to the mindless brutality of titles such as the recent Wolfenstein, featuring historically neutered Nazi approximations joyfully dispatched with abandon. But then, who complained when Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds did exactly the same thing? The problem is not with the content of games, then, but the general perception of those of us that play them. But with MPs and religious speakers more often than not misrepresenting games, that is a perception we continue to fight.

So we shouldn’t give up reading, like the Eloi. The idea that we should somehow protect ourselves from uncomfortable images ignores the real question. How do we tell society, our children, to process those images, to react to them in an appropriate way? Failure to do so is our fault alone, and not the responsibility of any media which merely seeks to reflect the world in which we live. That is the nature of art, after all, and it is the weaker society which cannot bear its own reflection.
Virgin Money Giving - support Cancer Research UK and sponsor me to run!
Next Event: Exeter's Great West Run, 19/10/2014

827
Posts32398
Joined19-May-2003
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

40

Posted 30,000 times
been a member for 9 years
start a thread with over 50 pages of replies
been a member for 8 years
started 5 threads in the Tech Forum
posted 50 times to the tech forum
been a member for 7 years
Posted 20,000 times
start a thread with over 15 pages of replies

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby MoBiUGeArSkIn on Tue Nov 17, 2009 8:43 pm

Great article.

I can't find the Big Question on Iplayer, but reading the comments on Eurogamer's piece, about the same thing, just demonstrated pure FAIL.

You'd think books, films, and TV shows featuring the EXACT SAME CONTEXT never existed.

XBLColonel Red
PSNColonelRed
112847
167
5/200
5/200
200/200
965/1700
50/90
Posted 10,000 times
posted an average of 10 messages a day for a week
start a thread with over 15 pages of replies
posted 50 times to the tech forum
been a member for 9 years
been a member for 8 years
start a thread with over 5 pages of replies
been a member for 7 years
started 5 threads in the Tech Forum
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby Colonel Red on Wed Nov 18, 2009 7:33 am

Well, exactly. It comes down to the interactivity of games, perhaps, and the idea that participating is somehow more dangerous than simply watching something. But then, you look at films like Clockwork Orange which suggest the total opposite, that passive observation of violent images is enough to completely pervert the mind, and you realise that really all of this is always just fear of a new media with some bogus science attached for justification.
Virgin Money Giving - support Cancer Research UK and sponsor me to run!
Next Event: Exeter's Great West Run, 19/10/2014

XBLDroog Janus
18271
312
Posts40641
30/400
100/200
290/2000
60/1000
185/200
Posted 40,000 times
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

9

been a member for 9 years
started 5 threads in the Tech Forum
been a member for 8 years
posted 10 times to the babes thread
posted 10 times in the Tech Forum
updated their profile to a Christmas Avatar
been a member for 7 years
posted an average of 10 messages a day for a week

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby Janus on Wed Nov 18, 2009 9:54 am

I'm not so sure that you could claim Modern Warfare 2 did this scene as political commentary?! The series my have realistic visuals, but it's highly unrealistic in many aspects of it's game play. This airport scene seems to be the 'nuke' scene of the original. I've not actually played the level yet, but I am looking forward to it.
BOOM! Jon Stewart is a LeeeeGeeeeND!

XBLColonel Red
PSNColonelRed
112847
167
5/200
5/200
200/200
965/1700
50/90
Posted 10,000 times
posted an average of 10 messages a day for a week
start a thread with over 15 pages of replies
posted 50 times to the tech forum
been a member for 9 years
been a member for 8 years
start a thread with over 5 pages of replies
been a member for 7 years
started 5 threads in the Tech Forum
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby Colonel Red on Wed Nov 18, 2009 12:20 pm

It doesn't have to be realistic to provoke feelings other than simple fun. The point is, it's not gratuitous and sick, as the Daily Mail would have you believe.
Virgin Money Giving - support Cancer Research UK and sponsor me to run!
Next Event: Exeter's Great West Run, 19/10/2014

XBLMSP Mike
46810
347
Posts37972
Joined28-May-2003
560/1250
10/1170
450/1000
780/1250
100/1000
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

10

been a member for 9 years
posted 100 times to the babes thread
been a member for 8 years
start a thread with over 15 pages of replies
start a thread with over 5 pages of replies
started a topic in more than 5 forums
been a member for 7 years
posted 50 times in the babes thread
updated their profile to a Christmas Avatar

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby Manic Street Preacher on Wed Nov 18, 2009 12:24 pm

Janus wrote:I'm not so sure that you could claim Modern Warfare 2 did this scene as political commentary?! The series my have realistic visuals, but it's highly unrealistic in many aspects of it's game play. This airport scene seems to be the 'nuke' scene of the original. I've not actually played the level yet, but I am looking forward to it.


You sick freak!

XBLCasius Black
35684
117
Posts1914
Joined24-Apr-2003
1175/1655
250/400
860/1550
470/1000
350/1000
been a member for 8 years
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

2

start a thread with over 15 pages of replies
start a thread with over 5 pages of replies
been a member for 7 years
start a thread with over 1 page of replies
first thread in the new forums
been a member for 6 years
Received a 5 star rating for a thread
First post in the new forums

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby andywarlock on Wed Nov 18, 2009 1:20 pm

First time i've ever read Covered and I got to say i'm impressed with the quality of the article and the insight displayed by Red himself. Will definately be reading the next one...
"A totally purposeless idea, but a damn fine one..."

XBLBorn2beSlicker
120085
2237
Posts33883
80/1000
100/400
1700/1700
470/700
10/200
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

133

Posted 30,000 times
start a thread with over 100 pages of replies
been a member for 8 years
start a thread with over 50 pages of replies
been a member for 7 years
start a thread with over 15 pages of replies
posted 50 times in the babes thread
Posted 20,000 times
been a member for 6 years

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby Born2beSlicker on Wed Nov 18, 2009 1:38 pm

andywarlock wrote:First time i've ever read Covered and I got to say i'm impressed with the quality of the article and the insight displayed by Red himself. Will definately be reading the next one...


You could read the previous ones also?
Tumblr FaceBook
3DS: 2165-5761-2120

XBLApocalypseCow
37598
207
Posts6477
Joined27-Nov-2002
5/1640
755/1500
0/1000
5/1000
20/1225
been a member for 9 years
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

3

start a thread with over 15 pages of replies
posted 10 times to the babes thread
been a member for 8 years
posted 50 times to the tech forum
updated their profile to a Christmas Avatar
been a member for 7 years
start a thread with over 5 pages of replies
started a topic in more than 5 forums

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby ApocalypseCow on Wed Nov 18, 2009 1:54 pm

You can find the previous ones here

XBLColonel Red
PSNColonelRed
112847
167
5/200
5/200
200/200
965/1700
50/90
Posted 10,000 times
posted an average of 10 messages a day for a week
start a thread with over 15 pages of replies
posted 50 times to the tech forum
been a member for 9 years
been a member for 8 years
start a thread with over 5 pages of replies
been a member for 7 years
started 5 threads in the Tech Forum
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby Colonel Red on Wed Nov 18, 2009 4:11 pm

andywarlock wrote:First time i've ever read Covered and I got to say i'm impressed with the quality of the article and the insight displayed by Red himself. Will definately be reading the next one...

I always appreciate it when I get comments like this. It makes the effort I put in feel worthwhile, so thank you.
Virgin Money Giving - support Cancer Research UK and sponsor me to run!
Next Event: Exeter's Great West Run, 19/10/2014

827
Posts32398
Joined19-May-2003
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

40

Posted 30,000 times
been a member for 9 years
start a thread with over 50 pages of replies
been a member for 8 years
started 5 threads in the Tech Forum
posted 50 times to the tech forum
been a member for 7 years
Posted 20,000 times
start a thread with over 15 pages of replies

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby MoBiUGeArSkIn on Wed Nov 18, 2009 4:24 pm

To bring balance to the force... the article is shit!

My work here is done.

42
Posts691
Joined10-Jan-2006
been a member for 5 years
been a member for 4 years
been a member for 3 years
Received a 5 star rating for a thread
first thread in the new forums
been a member for 2 years
been a member for a year
First post in the new forums

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby old_greg on Wed Nov 18, 2009 4:43 pm

I wasn't going to bother with this new COD, but my better half surprised me with it when she came back from shopping the other day.

The airport bit is brilliant, it's great just casually walking about shooting innocent people as they run about screaming and panicking. I might be a bit sick actually, but it's bloody good. I got killed at the end of it just as I was stepping into the ambulance, is this normal?... might play through it again anyway.

Terrorism is fun indeed, whoda' thunk it?!
Old Greg is everywhere. He's all around you, he's inside you, he holds your hand when you go to sleep, he's up you.

XBLColonel Red
PSNColonelRed
112847
167
5/200
5/200
200/200
965/1700
50/90
Posted 10,000 times
posted an average of 10 messages a day for a week
start a thread with over 15 pages of replies
posted 50 times to the tech forum
been a member for 9 years
been a member for 8 years
start a thread with over 5 pages of replies
been a member for 7 years
started 5 threads in the Tech Forum
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby Colonel Red on Wed Nov 18, 2009 5:44 pm

old_greg wrote:Terrorism is fun indeed, whoda' thunk it?!

I'm guessing someone didn't read my article! :lol:

It sounds like you have problems, Greg - the Daily Mail might be right after all!
Virgin Money Giving - support Cancer Research UK and sponsor me to run!
Next Event: Exeter's Great West Run, 19/10/2014

42
Posts691
Joined10-Jan-2006
been a member for 5 years
been a member for 4 years
been a member for 3 years
Received a 5 star rating for a thread
first thread in the new forums
been a member for 2 years
been a member for a year
First post in the new forums

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby old_greg on Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:09 pm

I skim read it, bit too long for me.
Old Greg is everywhere. He's all around you, he's inside you, he holds your hand when you go to sleep, he's up you.

XBLColonel Red
PSNColonelRed
112847
167
5/200
5/200
200/200
965/1700
50/90
Posted 10,000 times
posted an average of 10 messages a day for a week
start a thread with over 15 pages of replies
posted 50 times to the tech forum
been a member for 9 years
been a member for 8 years
start a thread with over 5 pages of replies
been a member for 7 years
started 5 threads in the Tech Forum
Started a thread that got linked to from the front page

Re: Covered #13: Terrorism Is Fun

Postby Colonel Red on Mon Nov 23, 2009 8:14 pm

I thought maybe this story was done, until I saw this:

Games 'permit' virtual war crimes

Apparently we now need reminders in games to tell us when a parallel action in the real world would constitute an illegal act. I wonder if Mario is a fully accredited plumber?
Virgin Money Giving - support Cancer Research UK and sponsor me to run!
Next Event: Exeter's Great West Run, 19/10/2014

Next

Share the BXB Love:

Return to Everything Xbox

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Craigimt