How We Judge What Should And Shouldn’t Be Acceptable In The Medium Of Video Games

How We Judge What Should And Shouldn’t Be Acceptable In The Medium Of Video Games


Comparatively Fun

The question of whether games are “good” or “bad” for players is obviously much more complex than that binary can encompass. What games? Who is playing? How much? When?

In general, however, the question of whether games are a good thing or a bad thing is reduced to the question of how violent any particular game is. When I was young, for instance, Mortal Kombat was considered violent basically to the point of obscenity. If you’ve seen any of Mortal Kombat X or Mortal Kombat 11, the violence in the first game seems positively quaint.

This is all to say that our concerns about what makes a game safe to play or not changes with time. We’re much more accepting, at a cultural level, of violence than other sort of “adult” material. In particular, any material, no matter how innocuous, that references LGBTQ+ topics can get a game an “M” rating or an “Explicit” tag.

For this discussion, consider how we judge what should and shouldn’t be acceptable in the medium of video games? Are we too accepting of violence or other supposedly adult content? Does the ability to interact with a game change how we should judge them (versus a movie, for example)?

Remember that your response to this discussion should:

1) reference in ways that enrich and support your points (most likely in a later paragraph, but you can feel free to reference any of the texts in your review of the game!)

2) be carefully written so as to avoid errors in grammar and syntax

3) engage deeply with the question by interrogating your own assumptions, questioning and complicating the issues raised in the text, and even by reframing the questions asked. A fairly well-developed response will run ~500 words or 2-3 well-developed paragraphs.

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