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War of the Minds

When it comes to video games, who should be more responsible: the consumer or the game makers?

By Troy Roberts and James Stevenson     October 24, 2003

In today's society, it seems like more and more violent media are marketed towards the younger generation. Whether it be teens or pre-teens, today's violent and expletive video games, music and movies are marketed towards the younger crowd. Troy and James give their varied opinions on this topic.

"While I do fault the video game companies for marketing their violent games towards kids, it really

FINAL FANTASY XI arrives on the PC.

does make them a ton of money. It's a shame that moral values are sometimes thrown out the window when dealing with these decisions. I mean, basically companies (movie and music industries included) market their stuff to kids on the basis that, if you're cool, you'll buy this; and this in itself brings in a lot of consumers. I mean, you can't convince me people listen to a lot of the music out there because it is good. But I'm rambling now. While I do place a lot of blame on the companies, blame must also go to the parents; especially the ones who buy a Mature rated game for their seven-year-old kid, then complain about how violent video games are ruining today's kids (perfect examples are GRAND THEFT AUTO and MAX PAYNE)." Troy

"I don't really see too much of an issue in the videogame industry. The ESRB has done a good job in working with companies to establish a good guideline system. These ratings aren't always enforced, but neither are your ratings at a local movieplex. Many stores won't sell an 'M' rated game to someone under seventeen. There's always ways to get around this - but it's a start. As far as marketing goes, I don't see too many violent game commercials period - the most frequent would be for VICE CITY, but even then, that's usually late night TV. I can't say I watch a lot of children's TV, but from what I have seen, it is not an issue. There will always be cases of youngsters getting there hands on violent games - but it's no worse than any other industry." James

Let us know what you think by e-mailing us at GamersThumb@cinescape.com.


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Gamers' Thumb is our weekly Video Game column.

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