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for Video Games Don't Suck, But Stupid People Do

9/14/2005 c1 7Chris Redfield

great piece
9/9/2005 c1 Ay-yay
You rock.

I don't play violent games, but I do agree that they shouldn't just be given to little children. I know a bunch of people who think Halo is the best game ever. I like Final Fantasy, and they make fun of me for it. But what do they do? Mindless shooting. What do I do? Solve puzzles and watch an intelligent, engulfing plot.

Ever heard of Jack Thompson? This dude who thinks video games make you kill people.
8/31/2005 c1 24Moonjava
All though this is humor. I completely agree. I feel the same way with music, movies, and etc. Parents really do just need to watch their kids more. And stop blaming others for their actions.
8/26/2005 c1 34Forest Passant

I know what you mean-games really can help kids learn to think laterally, whatever that means.

I think a lot of people object because they're not any exercise, and everyone's fat nowadays... lol.
8/16/2005 c1 7Androvnicus
Amen to that my fellow gamer! Though I dont really concur with your statement on shooting all stupid people. If we acted upon it, we would be seriously outnumbered.
8/15/2005 c1 5Hanoi Jane
You are wise beyond your years... I am lucky enough to live in a state (and I mean this as sarcastically as possible) that has banned the sale of "explicit" video games to minors. So, I know how you feel. Other than a helpless addiction to the Sims 2, I don't play video games, but I still manage to find the time to get angry over it. Like you said, if someone is spurred to killing someone by playing Grand Theft Auto, they weren't 100 % normal to begin with. There's an essay about this on my site, if anyone's interested.
6/11/2005 c1 4Rio Madeira
Very, very impressive. Maybe they don't make the brain of the player melt, but obviously they've had some effect on the person paying for it. If you'd like to read some similar essays, please check out "While The Iron's Hot" by yours truly.
6/2/2005 c1 words you used to know
A great point proven. May I have your permission to email this to my biased media studies teacher? ^^

5/7/2005 c1 2Mystic Smash
(Bows down to your excellence.)
4/4/2005 c1 6Double Entendre
Bravo. Terrific essay. I totally agree with you; my little bro plays video games and nothing is wrong with him... well other than what was wrong with him when he was born. XD Good job.
3/25/2005 c1 5On Mercury
Hey, cool. Finally, someone who agrees about video games! And the six year old kid, you should have told your manager or something, if not at the time, at least afterwards, so that maybe if you knew they were going to buy it for the kid you could have refused her service. I know that sounds a bit Draconian, but it is GTA. I haven't played it, but I read the entire walkthrough one bored afternoon at a friend's house, and it doesn't sound as violent as has been made out, but still pretty bad for a mother to buy for a six year old kid.

Everybody that's saying the stupid people comments made the essay worse: it's a joke! A good joke! Meant to be funny!

"...Their point is that games are less productive mentally than most other leisure activities, and therefore work to effectively inhibit mental growth."

Wait, what other leisure activites are you talking about? TV? That's even worse! Sitting on a sofa...staring at the screen...not even moving slightly. I do it enough, I do know what kind of activity goes on during TV watching: NONE!

Anyway, apart from that, I liked your style and you had some good jokes.

3/22/2005 c1 2chitoryu12
Nice. Like you, I am a game player and very good at them. You should see my reaction time on GTA: San Andreas!
3/5/2005 c1 5hollin
I agree with you mostly about the violence component of your essay, even though the analogy you used avoided completely the opposing arguments; it's my belief that violence in video games is a reflection of violence in the world instead of the cause of it. And I certainly agree with you about the six-year-old playing GTA.

However, I cannot agree with your neat evasion of the opposing side's arguments as relates to intelligence. It's demonstrably true that video games don't make players dumber. Sadly, this is not at all the point that various senators and parents are trying to make. Their point is that games are less productive mentally than most other leisure activities, and therefore work to effectively inhibit mental growth. I'd have to say that I can believe this.

Here is where most gamers will point to such games as Myst and its successors, enumerating their virtues. Many games, however, are not like Myst. Some of the most-played games - Halo is immensely popular, and Mario Kart seems to be a favorite of yours – are nothing more than mindless speed or violence. Also, most games are focused hugely on numbers acquired through incredible time expenditure. Here I speak of RPGs like the Final Fantasies – again, you seem to have found a soulmate in IX – whose primary objective is to amass levels through repetitive battling. Ragnarok is a particularly extreme example of this. There, almost the sole focus is on amassing exp and zeni, and almost the sole means to this is a battle system that consists of clicking to attack. When someone spends four or five hours a day at this, he or she is very likely not to be as interesting, as talented, or even as intelligent as peers who play no games, watch no television, and spend their time reading, writing, or doing other such things.

Although you're not the first one from whom I've heard it, the reflexes claim seems to me to be grasping at straws. I will continue with your example from driving school. First, you use exactly two pieces of data to prove a trend. Second, the number game you mention used the same sort of skills that electronic entertainment does – manipulating a set environment with rules that, compared to the real world, are almost infinitely simple. This could not be further from the realities of driving and, more broadly, everyday life; there are thousands of things to consider in the real world, and thinking frantically 'B button! B button!' at the helm of an unresponsive SUV or Hummer will avert no crashes. Almost none of the skills that action games build translate well into real life.

Also, the addictiveness claim is untrue. I am a gamer. I do know what it's like to spend the day from noon to 2:00 AM playing – Final Fantasy Tactics and various Blizzard masterpieces, in my case – so I am able to state this very definitively. In keeping with my previous gospel of supporting data, I will say that this extends also to several friends that I have known to be far too obsessed with various consoles for their own good. Video games are addictive; I challenge any gamer who disagrees with this statement to go for a fortnight without any video games. Thinking that you're capable of such does not count, because that requires exactly no sacrifice. My parents were fond of doing this to me, by the way, and I remember exactly how few other activities I found appealing then.

Don't get me wrong. As I said, I enjoy video games as well, and incidentally hate censorship just as much as you. I had to say something, though, because I do believe that they, with television, are causing a great many people to fall into mental decadence. I'm not making a direct accusation against you, either, or any of the other people like you who play sensibly – that would be foolish, considering what you have accomplished here and they have accomplished here and elsewhere – but there are others to whom 'stupid people's' arguments are relevant and I felt thus compelled to respond here in some way.

This is, by the way, a ridiculously long review. I promise not to be offended if you decide that it has become redundant and is taking up space, much though my sanction should influence you in the first place; it seems I've lost control of myself and written for roughly half the length of the piece I'm commenting on. Be well, and continue writing!
2/25/2005 c1 52AboveTheSalt
Heh, love it. I've been arguing responsibility all day so this fits my mood quite well. Video games are beautiful. You are beautiful. End of story.

And in respone to the empty-space person about your profile, I'd just like to say that I *have* read your entire profile and found it very interesting. No need to shorten, and the scroll key is very appealing to some. :)
2/20/2005 c1 thegamehascrashednooo
OMG! I love it! -favourites- Us videogame-lovers must band together and defeat those stupid idiots who blame our precious videogames for things they don't do!
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