Weapons of mass distraction ... too much violence in games?
Published: 11th November 2009
FLYING off the shelves at a phenomenal rate, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is set to be the fastest selling video game ever.
However, the game has also attracted attention for its graphically violent content, including an optional level where the player can gun down innocent civilians in an airport.
Its controversial nature has reignited the debate surrounding the link between violent computer games and aggressive real-life behaviour.
Can virtual violence have a detrimental effect on the people who play games? MY Sun users got to the heart of the matter in our News forum.
Gunplay ... Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
eddy_nygma objects to over-the-top software: "People who compare these games to films etc. are wrong, because films are passive, you don't interact, whereas with violent games you are controlling the action."
"Whatever you may think, playing these games does affect you on some small level, desensitising you to violence and crime. I think games developers should be more thoughtful and responsible when it comes to making games, even ones classed as 'mature'.
"Mature doesn't have to mean graphically violent."
Many agree: "I honestly think they do incite violence," says Super_Cool.
However, fredelliot is playful when it comes to the subject: "Do video games glorify violence? Bloody yes! I once bought a water pistol and started drowning anyone who dared to walk past my bedroom window.
"I dread to think what I will be capable of doing should I get my hands on this latest video game."
Avid gamer Draco001 feels it is just like any other hobby: "I am a big fan of all sorts of games and personally when I have a very stressful day I find it constructive to go home and play some violent games rather than swing at a real person. It is safer and ultimately enjoyable to relieve the tension in such a manner without personal injury too.
"If you try to ban violent games, you'll have to ban rap music and heavy metal music as well for what is said about them too. But will you?"
AchillesUK reckons it's being blown out of proportion: "Call of Duty represents modern warfare in the world - albeit without the realism (i.e. self healing).
"I have got, played and completed the new game and it does give the option to skip the level which is involved in this controversy."
fredgarvin is sceptical about games corrupting people: "For this scenario to be true - that such games will encourage people to go out and kill people so the game must be banned - then this posits the notion that EVERYONE is susceptible to this influence, and we could all be killers.
"But yet millions and millions of people play such games and DON'T go out and repeat the same in real life. Yet it only takes one or two idiots to create a furore. And these are indeed disturbed individuals, but then again they always were.
"Look at this from another angle - if video games are that influential, what about people who play driving games, and hair around tracks knocking other cars off the road, crashing, performing stunts etc - do these people go out and do the same on our roads?"
Are violent games an unhealthy pastime or just a harmless hobby?