Initially, Mass Effect incorrectly (and embarrassingly) got the blame for the tragic Sandy Hook school shooting. Now, British tabloids are picking up the "played video games" angle to single out Call of Duty and Dynasty Warriors.
Today's morning edition of The Sun carries this headline: "KILLER'S CALL OF DUTY OBSESSION". The sub headline reads "Massacre loner addicted to controversial vid game" and features a photo of the killer, Adam Lanza. As Eurogamer points out, the double page spread is titled "BLACK OPS BUNKER" and contests that Lanza played "bloodthirsty computer games such as Call of Duty" in the windowless basement of his mother's house. A plumber named Peter Wlasuk apparently visited this basement and recounted his visit to the tabloid.
"It was a beautiful house but he lived in the basement," Wlasuk said. "I always thought that was strange. But he had a proper set up down there—computers, a bathroom, bed and desk and a TV. There were no windows."
The plumber recalled how the boys loved the military and had military posters all over their walls. Continuing, Wlasuk added, "I'm not blaming the games for what happened. But they see a picture of a historical gun and say, 'I've used that on Call Of Duty.'"
Daily Mail The Express, meanwhile, is calling out "shockingly violent fantasy war game" Dynasty Warriors as Lanza's title of choice. It's unclear what The Express sourced for that information. Guess that's why it's a tabloid! (The story was originally reported by Reuters.)
Over on the Express' website, fans are sticking up for Dynasty Warriors. Writes GothicSwordsman, "I have been a fan of Koei, and the Dynasty Warriors franchise for several years, and it is not 'shockingly violent'. In fact, there was only a very small amount of blood shown... Furthermore, there's nothing in that series that I think could give inspiration to harm children like that."
"Historical guns" were not used at Sandy Hook. And Dynasty Warriors (above) features swords and spears—neither of which were used. None of it seems to matter. And while not all pundits agree, some are looking for something to blame, and they've found it: video games.
The Dark World of Adam Lanza [The Sun Thanks, Ken!]