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El Virus 11-10-2005 12:27 PM

Rockstar Games' Controversy
Rockstar games are a British game developer who publish with Take Two Interactive . They are best known for the Grand Theft Auto series, one of the best known modern game franchises and one which many saystarted a whole new genre. Another famous series produced by Rockstar is the MaxPayne series of games.
You've probably heard about them lately, as they have been in the media spotlight due to the violent nature of their games. Whether it's GTA, an original kind of naive game; GTA:Vice City, much more vilent and explicit; GTA:San Andreas, which has now been practically pushed off the market due to an alleged sexual content which deserved them an "18+" ESRB raiting; or the soon-to-come Bully, where they practically incentivate school violence.
For crying out loud, a recently imprisoned person, alleged that he had murdered some policemen 'because of GTA'.
The actions of this company have spawned a lot of crticism towards, not only their company, but video game violence in general; many think that legal meassures should be taken against them, and probably begin a crusade against violence as well.

So, what's your take on the issue?

90SK 11-10-2005 05:35 PM

Ugh, I'm pro anti-rockstar. I mean, I could tolerate GTA, but "Bully"!? What the hell are they playing at? Someone should really draw the line there. I mean, rating or no, kids are playing these games, and if it's set in a school with a direct objective for in school violence, what's next? "Terrorist"? Pick a high population place to bomb to hell for the religious cause of your choice?

DarthAve 11-10-2005 05:37 PM

CaptainSkye, shhh, you're giving them ideas. As for the issue at hand, I'm anit violent video games. I did a debate in social studies weather violent video games affect kids, and in looking for reasearch I've found over 100 different killings due to GTA alone. so much violence, it's ruining our children, our socity!

90SK 11-10-2005 05:42 PM

The scary part is, if GTA was banned, there would probably be even more violence. I'd love to talk with the Rockstar dev who dreamed it all up, really. Hear the angle, you know? For curiosity's sake.

DarthAve 11-10-2005 06:29 PM

I imagine he looks like quite gangsta' to tell you the truth.

JofaGuht 11-11-2005 12:36 AM

Imitative behavior is everywhere. It's rockstar games today, but it's gonna be something else tomorrow.

I think the games are overrated, personally.

El Virus 11-13-2005 07:48 AM

There's simply too much violence nowdays; this and the increasing sexual content in everything are the type of things that give freedom a bad name*.

GTA was fun some time ago, but honestly, the games lack a lot of things, and they are indeed overrated. When the whole "Hot Coffee" issue begun, I used to support them, but it's too much now. If they keep playing with fire, they are going to get burnt (or a similar Cliche-tish phrase).

*I am aware of how...ehm...totalitarian[?] this sounds.

Thrik 11-13-2005 11:22 AM

Personally, I don't see anything wrong with the Grand Theft Auto games. They're fun, and they're only as violent as you make them. Sure, you are given some fairly violent missions such as 'go assassinate somebody', but for the most part it's nothing that you don't see in your average 18+ rated movie. Let's not forget that GTA is 18+ rated.

Everything else such as killing prostitutes, clubbing random pedestrians over the head with baseball bats and whatever else the media has concentrated on is 100% down to the player. They're not told to do it, nor is it documented in the manual. The game simply lets them do it, and that is an important point that I feel far too many people miss out.

That said, what Rockstar is doing with Bully I don't approve of at all. With bullying being a genuine concern for a lot of children and parents, painting it to be even remotely positive is a seriously irresponsible thing for anybody to do. Rockstar know damn well that younger people will go out of their way to get hold of it due to its association with schools, and this is blatantly nothing more than a "We're doing it because we can!" move by Rockstar. I hope it backfires.

VampireNaomi 11-13-2005 02:03 PM

I've never heard of this "Bully" game so I can't give an opinion on it, but it sounds like it's appalling.

However, with the GTA series I'm much more familiar. My 13-year-old little brother likes the series a lot. I haven't played the games myself and I don't think killing a few fictional prostitutes has made him any more violent than he was before.

As Thrik pointed out, the series is rated for adults only. It's not the developers' fault if parents let their kids play games not meant for them.

El Virus 11-20-2005 08:56 AM

I never said anything about GTA other than agreeing that it was an overrated game. As a matter fact, I spent the past 2 years playing the game, and I had a good time.
If I wanted to say something about GTA though, there are many things I could use. For instance on Vice City if you follow the story line, there are scenes with explicit drug abuse and suggestive themes. But honestly, I could care less about the issue...

Samnmax221 03-12-2006 11:13 PM

**** censorship

"Don't join the book burners. Don't think you are going to conceal thoughts by concealing evidence that they ever existed."
— Dwight D. Eisenhower

urluckyday 06-09-2006 02:07 PM

I dunno...I guess I'm kind of both ways on this issue. I think people should be able to play their games, and they should continue making more, but I think they need to get them rated better so we don't have another "hot coffee" issue.

Smon 06-09-2006 02:12 PM

No matter what stupid kids are going to imitate TV and video games. Games like these will just encurage them, unfortunately if they don't imitate this they'll imitate Mario (which may not seem violent... but two kids jumping on each other is very painful.) or Mortal Kombat.

urluckyday 06-09-2006 03:41 PM

Kids are smarter than most people give them credit...yes there are a select few that just are absolutely messed up, and they are the ones on the news ruining kids reps. Believe me...most kids know what is right and's all in the parents...

Smon 06-09-2006 03:46 PM

Most of them do. The ones that don't end up on the news and ruin games for everyone.

urluckyday 06-09-2006 10:42 PM

...I wish you would restate that for easier understanding...

Miss_Mayhem 08-30-2006 07:07 PM

You have to think of the parents as well. They were not in their right mind when they boutgh little Jimmy GTA:SA for his 9th birthday. They really have to educate themselves on ratings, or at least have a cheesy talk with their kids. I dont think most have played a game themselves, same with the activists. It was hard to get Hot Coffee, that wasn't taken into account, though I have mixed feelings on Bully. I dont know enough to really have much of an opinion. But ever since games came out, violence has actually decreased, that should be taken into account as well. Afterall, when you come home from a bad day, nothing is as satisfying as shooting a guy in the crotch over and over.

But in the end, we wont have this discussion 10 years from now. Cuz eventually, our leaders will have played these violent videogames and have come out alright. Not all kids are stupid and impressionable, the few cases out of all the players have other contributing factors, the rest are smart. hey, I'm 13 and got M-rated games by buying them off of the internet with an account my dad made for me adn I'm alright.

Smon 08-30-2006 10:49 PM

Really it's just gaming's turn.

Comics were blamed for violence and they toughed it out thanks to the CAC.
Television was blamed for violence and it toughed it out thanks to the FCC.
Movies were blamed for violence and they toughed it out thanks to the MPAA.
Now, gaming is being blamed for violence and it will tough it out thanks to the ESRB.

Samnmax221 08-30-2006 10:56 PM

Stupid ****ers just need to let the Free Market work, if enough people find something offensive they won't buy it, and the company won't go that route again.

Upgrade 09-01-2006 05:50 PM

Im a big fan of grand theft auto. I used to play the original GTa and GTA2. Grand theft auto 3 and vice were my favorites. I did manage to beat GTA SAN ANDREAS. I heard rumors of bully but I didnt know what it was. But anyway even if they raised the ratings to 20+ kids would still play them

Du Man 09-08-2006 01:13 PM

Now that I recall, isn't GF rated for 13 and up? What's up with that? I mean rating games like GTA is understandable, but GF? i guess this might lead into a discussion of art verses "media vice" (i'll define that last term if anybody wants me to, but I think you all should know what I mean).

stewlil 03-08-2007 01:42 PM


Originally Posted by 90SK
Ugh, I'm pro anti-rockstar. I mean, I could tolerate GTA, but "Bully"!? What the hell are they playing at? Someone should really draw the line there. I mean, rating or no, kids are playing these games, and if it's set in a school with a direct objective for in school violence, what's next? "Terrorist"? Pick a high population place to bomb to hell for the religious cause of your choice?

I am a fan of rockstar Games, in "Bully" you dont actually play as the bully. You play against them.

Tveir 03-15-2007 08:47 AM

As much as the previous poster can be accused of topic necromancy, as long as it's up here I might as well post.

I never got the big fuzz about Hot Coffee, personally. Nor did anyone I hung out with at the time. We all pretty much wrote it off as an American thing, as we often do with these things. If there is an outrage about something seemingly trivial blown way out of proportion, which anyone with half a brain wouldn't care about under normal circumstances, it's usually American. I mean really, we're talking about the country where McDonald's is sued for having hot coffee and for having burgers that make people fat when frequently consumed.
Now, as for violence in videogames, first of all there is a reason violence is so common throughout different forms of cultural expression. Violence is a part of our being, an instinctive response and something that will develop naturally on its own without the need of outside stimuli. Violence isn't some complex philosophical dogma that's taken three great thinkers and a sect to develop, it is about as basic as eating. Children always fight. Admittedly not all children fight, at least not much, but children always fight, and I doubt there was a time when it wasn't so. Children don't even need an excuse to fight, they will just do it, much like some adults still do.

That being said, I'll have to admit I'm rather fond of Rockstar. There are a lot of people out there trying to do what they do less successfully, and there is still some innovation in them. They seek new territory and they push the boundaries. If videogames shall ever be concidered an artform, like books and movies have become with time, we will need people who are willing to push the boundaries a bit. GTA may not be perfect, but despite the clones it still stands as fairly unique. And not only that, it sells.

That is no small feat.

urluckyday 04-03-2007 04:03 PM

This is exactly how they get their word being controversial. Just think about it...Elvis was controversial b/c of his "suggestive" movements and dancing, and more and more people drew to him because it was's the same thing w/ Rockstar Games...they get most of their publicity from word of mouth...and that's why a lot of people buy their games...

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