Video Game Violence Distracts from Real Issues

This week, the president met with representatives from the video game industry. They discussed the possible link between violence depicted and real events. We’ve been down this road before. The search for the boogeyman has been through music, Dungeons & Dragons, Pokémon, and now back to video games again. As always, the cause of gun violence is anything but guns. The meeting at the White House was a closed session, not open to reporters. No point or conclusion was met.

Past studies have shown that there is no connection between gaming and actual violence. People are not heading out on shooting sprees after gaming sessions any more than they gardened after playing FarmVille. The most popular games, like Call of Duty and Overwatch, are played all over the world. Same with movies. In countries where guns are not so easily obtained, they don’t have the types of mass shootings we have here in the US. Why does the president think only Americans are impressionable when it comes to games? Every time someone says, “Maybe it’s the guns,” the NRA and those they fund start pointing elsewhere.

Video game violence

Are there some games that take things too far with violence? Yes, there are examples that most people would agree are in bad taste and not for younger players. These games come with an established rating system, and the parents should be paying attention to what their children are playing. People love to say that ratings systems should be enforced more strictly, but what would that mean? Should parents be fined or jailed if it’s found that their child was exposed to inappropriate content? If you’re not a fan of big government regulating how you raise your children, then you probably wouldn’t buy into that.

Trump addresses NRA
President Donald Trump arrives to address the National Rifle Association (NRA) Leadership Forum in Atlanta, Georgia on April 28, 2017 JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images

Violence in games is not the problem. Violence in movies is not the problem. Disturbed individuals with easy access to dangerous weapons are the problem. This administration seems to be searching for any party to lay the burden of gun violence on other than guns. It’s hard to take anything at face value from people who take money from the NRA.  NBC News reports that Trump’s campaign received about 21 million dollars from the gun lobby. It’s easy enough to find lists on the web of those who receive large contributions from them. Millions of reasons why the violence boogeyman will always be anything but a gun.


Wildstar Musings

I didn’t last very long in Wildstar, but I still have a lot about that game that I liked.
I  was listening to some other gaming podcasts this week, and they mentioned that Elder Scrolls Online is going free to play, and wondered if Wildstar would soon follow. I went to my Wildstar feed, and all of the casts I had been listening to had been abandoned. I finally found one that was current. The hosts were passionate about the game, but were not excited about non paying players coming in to the game.
For me, the only way I can give it another shot is if they scrap the sub fee. I thought they did an amazing job on character and housing design. I  don’t raid, so I didn’t give a fig about the hardcover aspects. I  died a lot as well, so that wasn’t fun. I guess I never really loved any of my Wildstar characters the way I do my Warcraft tools. That’s where the game failed for me. I have to want to play those guys instead of being frustrated by them. I don’t think it would take a great deal to get them there, though, so I would give them another shot. Just not for fifteen bucks a month.
I think at this point, WoW has proven that they’re the only ones who can carry a subscription fee. The future of gaming online looks to me to be “buy the box, free to play”. Wildstar is a good game, but to become a great game, they need to adapt to bring in more players. They’ve created a neat world, with a lot to do, but if they can make me love playing my toons, I’ll come back.