A Week In Comments

Why Mario Is In So Many Darn Games... Explained!
Comment by: Karth is Ego Tripping
Nominated by: (Human) Gyaruson

Dial M For Mario"

Danish Group Asks You To "Hit The Bitch"
Comment by: omgwtflolbbqbye
Nominated by: Showmeyomoves!

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I think the game is glitched.

I beat (tee hee) the game last night and my dinner still hasn't arrived...

Swiss Study Documents War Crimes Committed in 19 Games
Comment by: dd528
Nominated by: (Starman) Starman

I just finished reading the full paper. I guess I have a few comments.

First is that it has clearly been written by someone who is almost entirely unfamiliar, not just with violent shooters, but with videogames in general. Obviously there is nothing wrong with that per se, but in this specific case, I think the obvious ignorance about the directorial intent behind a game, or the way in which certain in-game situations are supposed to function, harms the credibility of the report.

Second is that the tone taken is somewhat peculiar inasmuch as that it seems to be taking on some kind of reformist or censorial mantle. Statements such as: "it would be recommendable to avoid putting these kinds of scenes
in video games as they could mislead players in terms of what is allowed to be done" seem to me to assume a pretty low level of capability on the part of the gamer to distinguish between reality and fiction. This is a trap that the mainstream media often fall into and it's disappointing to see that level of ignorance on display in what presents itself as a piece of academic research.

I think that the way that Rainbow Six punishes the player for inflicting civilian casualties is a good thing, but that is because of it being good game design, not because I think games have some kind of moral duty to be presented in that way. The report reads as if it assumes that the role games should be playing is educating gamers about international law, and that other gameplay or narrative concerns should be secondary. To me, that is bizarre.

But, whatever I think about the (substantial) failings of this particular report, it is attempting to address some important issues. A lot of games are violent. Few of those come anywhere near situating that violence in a realistic context, even when they might claim to be pursuing realism. We live in a world where gratuitous violence is exploited for entertainment potential all the time, but that that doesn't mean that, once in every ten (or even hundred) titles, a game can't come along with something more intelligent to say about war or about crime.

In the real world, rules of international law, and the pressures of perceived moral imperatives, act as influences on the behaviour of combatants in a manner that is often lazily caricatured, if not completely absent, in videogames. I think it is well worth asking why that is, and whether some games might be improved if efforts were made to better incorporate those kinds of themes and constraints.

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Industry Types Confess the Evil Deeds They've Done (in Games)
Comment by: Terrorsaur - Five Six
Nominated by: IchiShinigami

Me and Dogmeat were tied at the hip the moment we laid eyes on each other in the Scrapyard. His barks warmed my Boogeyman soul and we were soon on our way to being the stuff of Legend. We tackled the wasteland together; raiders feared the mere sight of Me and Dogmeat. I even taught him a few tricks, such as play dead ("Dogmeat is unconscious"), and fetch.

There were nights where me and dogmeat would sleep in the blistering cold nights of the wasteland in nothing but a mattress laid carelessly under a broken bridge or in a forgotten home. I would stare into his brown and blue eyes and feet him RadRoach meat as we both dozed off into the night.

But a distance began to grow between us. Sometimes I would send him to find ammo or chems and he would not return for days on end, leaving me alone to fight the Super Mutants and the Raiders who envied my ravishing good looks and weapons.

On other days, he began to intentionally screw up my plan of attacks and decide to run straight in into the fight while I was trying to sneak around, or would give away our position by making huge amounts of noise with the Wazer Wifle he dragged around like a piece of armor..

He began to grow vicious and careless. He would bark for no apparent reason and then leave in the middle of fights, leaving me to recruit a new partner, Jericho, in order to continue fighting. My once
Paragon heart became the Stuff of Nightmares. I grew angry. I later came to find he had gone on his own and had Puppies! of his own. I was crushed.

One day in the Citadel Tunnels, Dogmeat, Jericho and I were scavenging around for ammo and loot, as I continued the search for my father. Jericho had whispered to me "So do you want me to do it?" I said "No Jericho. Hes my pup. Ill do it." I told jericho to wait here as I took dogmeat with me into an abandoned train cart.

I grabbed my plasma rifle, and looked deep into his different colored eyes. His love for me, now absent from his eyes.

DOGMEAT HAS DIED.

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