On the Media response : “Should war crimes in video games be punished? “

Should war crimes in video games be punished? I think so. This week On the Media put up a blog post titled “Should war crimes in video games be punished?” by Pj Vogt. The article focused on an appeal by The Red Cross who called for video game makers to simulate scenarios where players who committed war crimes in the games had to face the required consequences.
The Red Cross is not saying that this should be essential for every game but that for games which include war scenarios this could truly help to heighten sensitivity to war crimes. I think this is a great idea because as the article states video games are used to train real soldiers if they are conditioned by the game that war crimes are bad, it might help on battlegrounds.
The article says that response to this initiative has been overwhelmingly positive. That makes me incredibly hopeful that human beings are willing to sacrifice what they think is the consequence-free world of virtual gaming for a gaming experience that teaches a lesson. There might be hope for us after all.

One comment

  1. As a gamer myself this comes down to the issue of games being real versus them being fun. Non gamers often have a difficult time understanding what is appealing about video-games apart from good graphics and cool characters. It also stems from the fact that the game needs to get more difficult as it progresses which often means more enemies and more difficult enemies. That means as game progresses it can seem more violent but to a gamer it’s just more difficult. This isn’t like real life, and gamers understand this. When you get into a game like Call of Duty, which is a shooter, on the surface is seems like an action movie with guns blazing everywhere and it can seem unsettling as you mow down 20 people in the matter of minutes with a big loud automatic weapon. But to the gamer, the enjoyment doesn’t come from simply shooting, it’s the fact that you managed to survive 20:1 odds while working through cover and properly managing your ammo and resources, and that’s something that opponents of violence games don’t’ seem to understand most the time.

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