I remember when Mortal Kombat first came out. A friend had it, was pumped, and wanted me to play it because I had been into video games, was very good at it when I was, and at the time, females weren’t being equated with being into the hobby (odd because I knew lots of girls my age who were actively playing it).
I didn’t like the gore. I thought it was overkill. I was really starting to appreciate the Bushido Code at the time, and thought the game was a spit in the face to it. You defeated an opponent; ripping out his head isn’t victory: it’s a serial killer’s MO.
I expressed my displeasure and got called names for my lack of enthusiasm.
I know the 11th edition is coming up. I have been exposed to the tenth version, and to me, it is a ridiculous premise: a character dies with wounds on one side of his face and the characters look sad.
Uh, excuse me? Don’t you people chop up opponents who are allegedly your pals as a course of habit? Including the dead guy?
And if given a chance, parents and children are chopping and tearing each other up and posing for selfies of the carnage.
Voguing after you commit indignity to a human body?
Stomping someone to the ground isn’t brave.
Some video games really taught generations how to function by rote: find a target, develop an antagonistic relationship with them, and then fight them, and then stomp them into the ground.
It explains Twitter. It is Mortal Kombat with words.
I don’t think video games induce violence, but I do believe that reinforce antagonistic dynamics that restrict ideas of cooperation as they reinforce intense and reactionary behaviours.
When I was a kid, I made my own computer games. They were crude, but always involved cooperation among players that involved thinking up very ribald and gross ideas and then turning it into a story where no one knows what the other person wrote until the end. I don’t think a single story did not have someone included some sort of scene involving various bowel movements. Kids are stupid, but always find laughs somewhere.
The stories were immature and obnoxious, but were great for laughs.
I did play Impossible Mission, and it did scare the shit right out of me when the little pixel guy screamed as he fell to his doom. My mom always knew I was playing that game by my facial expression of doom.
I managed to beat the game even though I never had actual game play instructions. You didn’t fight anyone: you dodged robots as you gathered clues to stop the evil scientist from taking over the world, muah ha ha and all that jazz.
I lost interest for games fairly early, though I did like the early online Escape the Room games where people from around the world would play it when it was release and cooperate with each other to solve it.
That I liked very much.
I always wondered why we don’t foster cooperation without creating pecking orders. Mutually beneficial outcomes while respecting others is the optimal solution, and yet people are always scheming how they can do a jig after destroying everyone else around them.
With Arc I, I am going to start questioning our base societal assumptions. I will be asking why we cannot let facts speak for themselves.
It’s a simple base, but one with more promise than the partisan guff we have conditioned ourselves to put up with for no good reason at all…