Thursday, January 27, 2011

Blaming Video Games...yet again

Hey Everyone

Thanks go out to JQ for updating us with his warhammer exploits, and I have to say that his men-at-arms indeed look great. JQ's having a really "educational" time in the league at the moment, as he regaled to me tales of brave charges and stoic foes. As always, I do not want to be a spoiler and I can at least assure all of you that his reports will be a good read.

Recently, you all must have heard about the terrorist bombing in Moscow. We at toyconstruct express condolences to the tragic loss of innocent lives, and we are indeed living under the spectre of terrorism. When I first read about it, it immediately reminded me of Modern Warfare 2, which has a stage that sees you killing innocent civilians in a fictional Russian airport.

A bloody scene from the Domodedovo airport.

Unfortunately, the state media (admittedly quite distressed and distraught) cited the game as the "inspiration" for the terrorist act. I've played through that stage, and it is unfortunate that the actual event has a casual relation to that "No Russian" stage. And more commentators have added that video gaming is a "training device" for terrorists. To me, that sounds more like a reaction out of fear than being constructive. Plus, anything can be used to train terrorists....even recruitment in the army/police.

"No Russian" Stage in Modern Warfare 2.

MW2's stage is a totally different style of attack (more akin to Calcutta) where they fired upon crowds of innocent civilians. Moreover, the terrorists were Russian ultra-nationalists who masqueraded as Americans...the only thing MW2 shares with the actual terrorist event is the location in Russia.

From what I know, perhaps the source of dissent would be a more appropriate area to look in to. For one, Chechnya has been a longtime thorn in Russia's side, and their fight for independence has been a protracted and bloody battle against government control. It is more helpful to look into that than blaming video games...

I do apologize if this post is a "soapbox", as I am convinced that video games make easy scapegoats for tragedies and blaming them deflects energy and focus away from the important issues at hand. I am not an expert on the situation in the North Caucasus, and I am very doubtful that the Federal government is handling it well at all. Most importantly, this could be Russia's 9/11 event and will indeed have a massive impact on their national consciousness, where the Chechen conflict and dissent is brought right out in front for all to see.


  1. The blame game always gets shoved all over the place by people trying to make sense of something so disastrous.

    But I agree with what you have said, Josh.

  2. Nay Josh. It isn't a soapbox entry but this type of things do happen.

    As long as it is the biggest form of media or entertainment capturing the world and with its realism, they will somehow demonized it or use it as the root to all evil that is happening in the world.

  3. The Tragedy that happen is regrettable. But seriously, doing the blaming thing on computer games isn't going to bring back the lives of the victims, let alone prevent the terrorists from inventing new ways and plots.

    And seriously... the world isn't a bed of roses, that is what the game illustrate.. Realism!

    That's just my 2 cents worth.

  4. I really wonder what would be the next evasive and drastic course of action that the Russians would do

  5. Well, firstly, they are going to find out who is the culprit. And then, whoop ass big time..
    They are definitely more grittier and more harsh than what the Americans would respond like..
    Especially when your prime minister is a Judo Master..and former KGB guy :p