Are you playing virtual war games today?

WARNING: This official trailer contains scenes of war

It’s the biggest video game launch ever …

The web is buzzing after the release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 around the world at midnight. 10,000 stores in the US alone stayed open (see the queues here and here). London’s Leicester Square hosted the sort of premiere normally reserved for blockbuster movies – but with a camouflage carpet, not a red one.

They’re all waiting to get their hands on a game where the player takes part in a military strike on a terrorist group. The most controversial scene allows the player – having infiltrated the terrorists – to attack civilians in an airport. The developer, Activision, says that scene is “not representative of the full experience” of the game. There is a clear warning ahead of the scene too.

But this Delhi blogger thinks it’s too close to recent reality in India. This UK newspaper reports a British MP’s anger about the game’s release  – although another British MP has set up this Facebook group to protest against “newspapers and politicians beating up on gaming”. Comments in this piece from the United States defend the maker’s “right to move into a taboo area for video games”.

Are you playing Modern Warfare 2 today? What do you think of some of the reaction to the game? What is the appeal of entertainment in which you kill or be killed? Should it be allowed?

22 Responses to “Are you playing virtual war games today?”

  1. 1 scmehta
    November 10, 2009 at 13:38

    Virtual war-games may be played and enjoyed, but the real war-games are generally thrust-upon and hated by the civilized world. But yes, of course, in our daily lives, we do keep playing virtual or mind games, to outwit one another in order to meet our greed or vested interests.

  2. November 10, 2009 at 16:12

    The only war game that I play is a game of chess,one of the quietest wars one could wish for.I don’t see why people should not play virtual war games,it does not suggest that the players are all manic killers.It’s more a competion and test of skill,made better by visuals and sound,and you are given seconds to make a decision.To raise the question of the game in parliament is silly.It is a game Mr.Vaz,it is not real nor compulsary.Have you nothing more important to raise in the Parliament than a game.

  3. 3 John in Salem
    November 10, 2009 at 16:15

    I don’t care what your virtual experience is or what theme it has. What you’re doing is sitting indoors, probably alone, staring at a screen and moving only your thumbs while the creative part of your brain atrophies into a lump along with the rest of your body.
    Pretty cool, I suppose – if you’re living in a nursing home.

    • 4 Will
      November 11, 2009 at 02:14

      Isn’t this discussion board a similar virtual, possibly indoor experience to take part in alone? Don’t tar all videogame enthusiasts as lonely, missing out on life types, its a negative stereotype that doesn’t always hold true.

  4. 5 Anthony
    November 10, 2009 at 16:55

    Ummmmm, yes, yes, and YES!!! Both my son and I will be playing COD: Modern Warfare 2 alllll evening. We will prob be inviting his friends over for some game play also. I hear this is the biggest entertainment money generated day EVER. That’s only because COD: MW2 is so superb is SOOOOO many ways.

    -Anthony, LA, CA

    PS, the few comments I’m seeing shows that people don’t understand the advanced thinking (and fun) associated with gaming, and especially online gaming.

    You’re not just trying to shoot others in the game, you have a mental over head view of the map, you learn the styles of your opponents, you look for their and your weapon/ perk advantages advantage, you constantly try to trick your opponents and get in their heads, you work as a team (in clans is when you get really strategic), and it’s more like an orchestra when you are taking turns shooting from different areas, constantly communicating about where your team, and their team is going, and getting a cycle to where your team is shooting and reloads in perfect precision. It’s like chess, except quicker, faster, and instead of staying 10 linear steps ahead, you have to stay ahead in so many different aspects of the game.

  5. 6 patti in cape coral
    November 10, 2009 at 16:56

    I’m not much of a gamer, but my kids are. I have never seen them play games that depict war, especially modern war, but I have seen my daughter play a game that depicted viking raids, mythological creatures, stuff like that. I tried it out and enjoyed it and I was somewhat surprised at my own blood thirsty nature, pillaging to my heart’s content. I guess it can be a safe outlet for the dark side of my personality. I don’t think I would enjoy the Call of Duty game, though, it is too close to the reality we are living in nowadays.

    • 7 patti in cape coral
      November 10, 2009 at 18:30

      p.s. I wonder why it’s easier to watch a grotesque mythological monster chomp on a viking than it is to watch somebody shooting civilians or beating up a girl like on some video games.

  6. 8 Anthony
    November 10, 2009 at 17:27

    @ patti in cape coral

    It is very realistic, but I use that to teach my son whenever we play the initial campaign mode. After he understands the story, and understands how war really is and what really people go through, and why we should thank God every day that we live in a country where we have food and freedom, then I won’t bug him anymore and we can play and play and play….

    -Anthony, LA, CA

  7. 9 John in Salem
    November 10, 2009 at 17:36

    You can describe the experience of gaming in a thousand different ways and it doesn’t change the essence of what it is – a substitute for participation in your life, which you only get ONE shot at and does not have a save and reload feature.

  8. 10 steve
    November 10, 2009 at 18:39

    Even if you gave this to me I wouldn’t play it. If you paid me to play it, I wouldn’t. Games have gone so downhill since these consoles have gotten so high tech. I miss the low graphics games of the 1980s…

  9. 11 Joseph
    November 10, 2009 at 19:07

    This controversy is just silly. Plenty of books and movies have scenes which are much more brutal then anything in gaming today and they are considered high art but when video games do the same it becomes a great moral crisis. I think it’s high time for politicians to stop blaming their issues on video games it’s childish and stifles a creative art form. (Note: I do plan on buying this game and applaud Infinity Ward’s decision to make a game that takes a better look at the reality)

  10. 12 Paul Coletti
    November 10, 2009 at 19:27

    I was persuaded by the hype to buy my first computer game in 27 years. I’m currently sitting in front of a message saying the internet servers are too busy . . . ah well . . . could be another 27 years to go . . . should I persevere or take it back ?

  11. 13 David - US
    November 10, 2009 at 19:28

    Although there are games that portray a negative message and it might go as far as harming a young person’s point of view. However, I play a modification of Battlefield 2 called Project Reality which is a multiplayer action game. There are quite a few factions in the game but most popular one would be Iraq’s insurgents against either the British or US Marines. There’s even the map of West Fallujah and Korengal Valley which is against the Taliban. One can play on either side. This mod was made for the intention of bringing a bit of reality into the game world. With this type of game one must think hard and strategize, unlike other games where all you do is shoot and kill everything that moves.

    There are games that will work your mind in a good way and others that won’t. Bottom line is that the game is there to entertain and have fun time. And the game makers are not to receive the full blame of games like the one described above, after all isn’t it a matter of “Supply and Demand”, the demand is certainly there so why not.

    http://www.realitymod.com for more info.

  12. 14 Tom K in Mpls
    November 10, 2009 at 21:59

    I play games. I used to compete online playing Tribes and Tribes2 capture the flag. I have to say that people that only see a depiction of violence are clueless. IMO Tribes was the only FPS worth playing, and I have tried others like Halo, Resident Evil and Medal of Honor. Simply because they have limited replayability. The biggest thing in defining a game as great is the ability to mentally immerse yourself in the setting. A personal thing.

    To anyone arguing that some people will immerse too far and potentially become dangerous, you are absolutely right. But this is the symptom and not the problem. Weak or young unguided minds will always find a focus. The subject is irrelevant.

  13. 15 claudine
    November 11, 2009 at 01:12

    I didnt know that such topics are up for discussion on woirldhaveyoursay.

    I think there are more important things to discuss than gaming.

  14. 16 Will
    November 11, 2009 at 02:08

    I bought it and have completed it. Brlliant game both technically and gameplay wise. Now I agree that sitting inside all the time in front of a screen isn’t good for you. But believe it or not not all gamers live their whole lives through their thumb strokes, some us go outside a few times a week, I myself left the house today to buy the game. I could have ordered it online thus preventing my sofa ass groove from losing rigidity.

  15. 17 Joseph
    November 11, 2009 at 10:34

    I do and love it. If we dont like the influence of it we would have to worry about many movies that screwing people minds as well. Until our governments organise our lifes in the name of freedom and democracy even this way I will enjoy it

  16. 18 Ibrahim in UK
    November 11, 2009 at 11:40

    Gaming is another form of escapism. As children, most of us played “pretend war” with our friends or had toy soldiers and recreated battles or like David Price, play chess. The thrill and satisfaction is in using your skill and guile to defeat the opponent (along with the gloating rights).
    I do though understand what patti in cape coral is talking about. There is a barrier that has to be crossed between killing monsters on screen and killing humans on screen for fun. As long as the enemy is make-believe, then it’s easier to treat the combat as a game. Once the enemy is real, then the combat becomes more real and personal. Who knows, maybe we are desensitising ourselves a notch when we gleefully harm fellow humans on screen.

  17. 19 Tom K in Mpls
    November 11, 2009 at 19:57

    Another thing. It is a unapologetic waste of time. So is poetry, music and many other mental activities. Not only is it okay, but it is considered necessary to some degree by many. It is a question of the individuals ability to fit into society that matters. And most societies are very adaptable.

  18. 20 INFIDEL
    November 11, 2009 at 21:25

    John in Salem,

    You’re exactly right that people get ONE shot at life – which is why I choose to do what I enjoy doing, and that includes sitting in a dark room by myself and having the time of my life playing an awesome game.

    Well, what do you know, other people are DIFFERENT. You go and do whatever you want to do, reading philosophy or discussing the same politics that seem to repeat themselves over and over or praying to your god for salvation/heaven until you’re exhausted, whatever your values are, they are just that – YOUR values.

  19. 21 jens
    November 12, 2009 at 17:04

    i just don’t get the point of gamming, but then it is upto the individual to decide how they wanna spend their time.

  20. November 18, 2009 at 10:27

    New COD is out 🙂
    Keep it up guys!

    not everyone is the same. Some people can have a vast imagination and some dont, while reverting to play these games

    In my opinion

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