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Fox News Tears Into Bulletstorm

FoxNews.com is at it again with their newest post asking “Is Bulletstorm the Worst Video Game in the World?”.  Well it was a great title because it made me want to check it out because I thought right away they reviewed the game and found some bugs or technical issue making it the worst video game in the world.  But boy was I wrong, as I read the post I began to get irritated with quotes that were made in the piece like:

The in-game awards system, called Skill Shots, ties the ugly, graphic violence into explicit sex acts: “topless” means cutting a player in half, while a “gang bang” means killing multiple enemies. And with kids as young as 9 playing such games, the experts FoxNews.com spoke with were nearly universally worried that video game violence may be reaching a fever pitch.

“If a younger kid experiences Bulletstorm’s explicit language and violence, the damage could be significant,” Dr. Jerry Weichman, a clinical psychologist at the Hoag Neurosciences Institute in Southern California, told FoxNews.com.

So this had me thinking as I like to think of myself as a gamer and a responsible one at that and I have children that love video games and the first thought that came to my mind was who the hell would buy a game such as Bulletstorm for their 9 year old child?!

I began to delve further into the article and some choice words were being mutterd under my breath and I finally came to a point in the article that finally made some sense:

“Between a great ratings system, parental controls on the consoles and the major retailers inhibiting the sale of Mature-rated games to minors, the matter is really one for parents and adults to consider, individually,” Hal Halpin, the president of the similar Entertainment Consumers Association, told FoxNews.com. “I respect the creative rights of game developers to make a game like Bulletstorm in the same way that I appreciate Quentin Tarantino’s right to make over-the-top movies like Kill Bill.”

Thank goodness for Hal Halpin to shed a little light on Fox News, but that really didn’t matter as the article still went on to blame the game makers and developers.  Melanie Killen Ph.D stated “The marketing is clearly aimed at children and young adolescents” are you kidding me you are a Ph.D and you stated such a thing?  Maybe the games are targeted for those children but let’s face it if an adult doesn’t buy the game for them they can’t play it, plain and simple.

So I finished up the article and I came to a few conclusions.

First:  If you are a parent and are afraid of your children playing this type of game, don’t buy it for them.  Gaming Consoles are not meant to be a babysitter so don’t buy a game for them that you don’t want them to play.  Pretty simple.

Second:  Parents do your research not only on the games your children want to play but what tools are available for you built right into the consoles you or another adult have bought for them.  Yes believe it or not you can control what your child downloads who your minor talks to and how long they play.  Don’t let little Johnny or Janey set up their own console be responsible and take the 10 minutes and do it yourself and ensure the proper settings are enabled for their age group.

Third:  If games are so bad for our children and we know what the “worst game in the world”  is for our children, have we as parents found out from our children what they did in school on a given day?

Fourth:  I am a parent and I have 2 children that play video games and I am aware of who their friends are on Xbox LIVE (because I have to put my password in for them to accept a friends request) and I am active in their lives and being a parent isn’t easy but it is our job to let them know what is right and wrong and I am not blaming parents for what Fox News has stated, but it is our responsibility to be educated our children the difference between right and wrong not a video game.

Last:  I love video games and some of the violence is a little over the top at times but that is what sells and I hate to see developers get a “lashing” from non-gamers because a responsible adult has bought a game for a minor.

So…

If it is to violent for you don’t buy it.

If it has to many explicit sex acts or words in it don’t buy it.

If it has a M rating and you have a 9 year old that wants the game don’t buy it for them.

Here are a few links for parents.

ESRB Rating Search

Xbox Online Saftey and Privacy Settings

PlayStation 3 Parental Controls

Educating our children starts with us.  The more we know the better we can educate our children in teaching them right from wrong.

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