Jump to content

Menu

Maybe this has been discussed before but what about violent video games?


Merry
 Share

Recommended Posts

I have a 12 year old ds who has been wanting to be like his neighborhood friends and play violent video games such as Assassin's Creed and Call of Duty. He keeps telling us that we can turn off the excessive blood but it seems to me that killing is still killing.

Am I too squeamish? I understand that Assassin's Creed is actually educational. And Halo's 4 justifies killing by using aliens instead of humans. But boys have always played with guns and also they go hunting so what's the big deal, so I hear.

Are there other video games that involve fun and challenge but not geeky or nerdy? My son wants to fit in and I do understand that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My older two were interested, so I told them to talk to dh (my first reaction tends to be no on these things). He researched them and decided (for various reasons and not all pertaining to the violence) that we wouldn't get into them right now. Would you be able to leave it up to their Dad?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd say Portal is pretty safe. Good problem solving too. Some potentially dark story lines in 1, but it's not gory at all.

 

We do let our son play games like CoD with my father online in multiplayer. They have it set up so ds doesn't get the talk of anyone but his grandfather. Even with gore turned off, the game is VERY violent. It's still cartooney enough that I am okay with it, although dh and I do discuss it on occasion. Our son does distinguish reality from fantasy well, and I've not heard him obsess about any of the FPS games he's played. (First person shooters)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm probably not qualified to answer this, as I have all girls. Until just now, I thought this wouldn't be a problem at all - two do like video games, but things like Sims and FancyPants, and they just got CivRome. Third has never been a big video game fan, though she has played with Portal and Portal 2, but again, nothing I'd have a problem with.

 

But now all of a sudden she wants to play some game with an M rating. :huh: At least she's older... she'll be 15 in a month. She printed out detailed reviews of the game (BioShock) that said while there was lots of violence and swearing :glare: , there were all these complex themes - it's some Ayn Randian dystopia, apparently. But I get the feeling it's somewhat anti-Rand as it is a dystopia and apparently if you help others they will help you back and you end up doing much better in the game - if you're a user it gives you instant points but you end up with a worse outcome at the end. At least so say the reviews she showed me. I am still mulling over what the heck to say to this... :confused1:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't think that OP is "too squeamish". I also laugh at the twisted uses of the word "educational" attempted by marketers.

 

It really can depend on the game.

The puzzle solving in Portal is cool.

The Professor Layton games for the DS are absolutely math puzzles of the sort you'd find in a book. From Endless Ocean, my son got to recognize a number of fish. From MineCraft he's memorized powers of 2 ;). (Yes, that one's a major stretch)

 

I don't see any benefit to CoD other than the time he spends with his grandfather though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If they are playing on pcs, you could try World of Tanks or War Thunder (WWII airplane combat). It's an online multiplayer, but no blood. Instead they build and blow up tanks/airplanes from opposing sides. GB knows all of the makes and models of just about every tank and airplane from WWII.

 

Portal & Portal 2 are great.

I've been playing Don't Starve lately. :)

 

I'm not a big fan of FPS. We do allow a few, but dad plays with him and we turn off the gore.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dh is a gamer, so I let him get the final say on video games. Ds has played all of the ones mentioned, but other than Halo, they aren't his favorites...until he gets with other boys! I have a socially awkward, quirky son that is AMAZING at video games. It has helped him fit in and make friends. That was important to us.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We are a gamer family. However, we decided to wait on FPS games on the whole. My sons are 10 and 13. We had let them try them out, and decided they weren't ready to play them. Child specific, I don't care if someone else decides their child is ready.

 

Both my boys do play World of Tanks, so I second that recommendation. They both know quite a bit of trivia about WW2 tanks now as well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

They'll have plenty of opportunity to play violent video games when they're in college. I vote no!

 

One danger there is finally having freedom and then gorging.

 

I remember during finals, playing a video game regularly, hearing my alarm in the morning and continuing to hit snooze, thinking I could restore to an earlier save game. :)

 

I'll do everything to be sure m y son can self regulate his gaming and prioritize his time before college.

 

If its only the violent games that are restricted, that's very different than restricting all gaming.

I read some gaming forums and do hear about people who did flunk out of college due to gaming habits.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have one this age, and some that are older.

 

Our rule is that we don't play or buy it at my home.

 

I don't mind him playing it at a friend's, though.

 

None of my kids were/are heavy gamers, though; even at 12 they were/are still spending time outdoors or on other interests, even at friends' homes. And if they're all balancing (any) game with other interests, then exposure (to any game) doesn't bother me. Or at least it hasn't, thus far LOL. For me it's an issue less about exposure and more about the ability to moderate oneself. I feel this about any game, even non-violent ones. If exposure is limited, then specific content doesn't bother me much.

 

If this was a friend who spent most of his time playing these types of games, I'm not sure my approach would work.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I will be the odd man out here. I am ok with some FPS games (Halo, Call of Duty, etc). I have no real fear that my ds will grow up to be a violent killer.

 

However, I don't allow games with sexually explicit material because problems in life related to that kind of material are real and common.

 

If the language is bad in a game then he has to play it with the volume off. I don't want him talking like that.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My 12 1/2 year old has gotten a couple hand selected FPS games over the last year. We started with Portal and even I LOVED that game series. I think that one is rated 10+.

 

Anyway, I think this is super dependent on a kid's personality and maturity level. My son has friends I would not let at these games yet at their current ages. We're a techie family. Both my DH and I have backgrounds as software engineers so it would feel pretty disingenuous to be too strict one this stuff. But given my kid's personality, we've been more permissive than I would have thought we could be. In terms of movies too. I also think it's absolutely fine to disallow it if it doesn't work for your family. I think it's probably easier to do so if you don't have techie parents. :001_smile:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I wouldn't let a 12-18 year old play video games with any blood.

I would, however, let a 12-18 year old play ones with the airplanes blowing up, so I guess it's not the

violence but the blood.

Gaming is supposed to be fun and get adrenaline flowing and reflexes sharpened.

I fail to see how blood spurting increases the coolness.

I like the action and the skill aspect of it.

 

That said, there have not been any video games at our house for 4 years.

Before, there was Angry Birds and Plants Vs. Zombies for about 1 year.

Before that there was nothing.

 

So, I don't think they are necessary at all but I think they could be very cool and fun.

And violent ones would be fine if the violence didn't involve blood or anything gruesome

or sick.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think as long as you are aware of what your children are playing you can make the best decision for your family. It doesn't really matter what others allow or restrict.

 

I can't tell you how many times, once it is discovered by acquaintances that dh is a gamer, they ask a question that makes it obvious they have no idea what their children are playing. He's heard ...oh I don't know what he plays the Xbox is in his room. He's in there all the time.

Or can you recommend a game for ds10's birthday? He seems to play something called GTA a lot I don't know what that stands for. :confused:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yikes! I'd have trouble giving any money to RockStar! I'll let my son do the shooting in CoD, but GTA is right off the table!

Dh and I used to argue about him playing Duke Nukem 3D.

I suppose I'm more concerned with the representation of women in some games than the violence in them,

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Would he be interested in sports games? We have quite a lot of those. The Tony Hawk skateboard ones are geographically educational. ;)

 

 

 

I'm no longer sure where I stand on video games. ;) I've played Xbox Lego games (currently Harry Potter) with my nephew...it's rather fun, although once you unlock and use a dark arts character it gets old. ;)

 

ETA: Years ago I was absolutely horrified by Grand Theft Auto. I cant get pass that content. My children know that crosses a line for me, and they do respect it. I appreciate that my feelings matter to them.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think there are different levels of violence -- the Rated T games tend not to be as bad as the Rated M games, and they also don't usually have as much s*xuality -- but you can't always count on that, so you have to be an informed parent.

 

My ds13 doesn't play Rated M games because he pretty much self-restricts himself to T and under. I've told him that if he wants an M game, he has to clear it with me first, but he doesn't like excessive blood and gore, so it hasn't been an issue yet. He also doesn't buy T games until I say it's OK (but I rarely say no, because he's pretty good about assessing what will and what won't pass the Mom Test.)

 

As Heather mentioned, I'm more concerned about the s*xual stuff -- as kids get older, you really have to research the games before you buy them, or you may be in for some nasty surprises! :eek:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My kids want to fit in and be like their friends too. It doesn't mean that we will allow them to do what their friends do.

 

I will never allow my kids to play killing games. I read a book years ago that made the connections between violence and school shootings, backed up with research that video games can negatively change the brain.

 

Other than a Kindle or ipod, we do not own gaming systems, and it will stay that way for as long as possible. I'd rather my kids were outside playing anyway. I'm sure we'll get something someday, but violent games will never be allowed in our home.

 

I'm not debating this at all, and I will likely never change my stance on this issue.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We don't allow first-person shooting games. While science is still sketchy on the long-term effects of playing such games, we do know that for the short-term, they increase violent tendencies for some children. DS10 has no problem walking away from video games. DS9 throws a massive temper tantrum when it's time to turn the games off, and he gets really ugly when he's losing and isn't allowed to reset the game. So for one child, these types of games would probably have little to no effect. For the younger, I could see them affecting his personality.

 

We tend to go by the ratings on the games.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My kids want to fit in and be like their friends too. It doesn't mean that we will allow them to do what their friends do.

 

I will never allow my kids to play killing games. I read a book years ago that made the connections between violence and school shootings, backed up with research that video games can negatively change the brain.

 

Other than a Kindle or ipod, we do not own gaming systems, and it will stay that way for as long as possible. I'd rather my kids were outside playing anyway. I'm sure we'll get something someday, but violent games will never be allowed in our home.

 

I'm not debating this at all, and I will likely never change my stance on this issue.

 

 

 

 

 

I feel the exact same way.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think a nice grownup could play all sorts of terrible games

and still stay nice. I have evidence of many nice college age and

up people who played horrible games and went on to be peaceful

great people.

 

I think a young kid might be affected, though, and it might depend

on his age.

 

I'm not sure though because we don't have any games at our house

and when we did for 1 year they were non-violent.

 

And I don't know what age would be affected. That would be

interesting to find out.

 

Anyone have articles to link? I think a PP had some research?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We allow Portal and Portal 2, and (blush) Plants vs Zombies- for those who don't know this one is animated and not FPS. We considered allowing one of the shooters for a time, DH and I played multi-player and allowed kids to dabble. But we've since decided just to avoid that genre for the kids as a precaution. In addition to the violence, in the multi-player settings you are exposed to the language used by other players (unless you can set up a private game).

 

Some of the other games our kids are allowed to play include "cartoon violence" but we've chosen to stay away from the first person games for now.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The whole family loved Plants vs Zombies.

 

How about trying a subscription service like Gamefly? It's like Netflix for console games. It's a bit pricey IMO but can end up saving you money if you just want to try out certain games and see the content before commiting to buying it.

 

We had it for awhile but I didn't like how their queue system worked. It doesn't exactly go in order.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One danger there is finally having freedom and then gorging.

 

I remember during finals, playing a video game regularly, hearing my alarm in the morning and continuing to hit snooze, thinking I could restore to an earlier save game. :)

 

I'll do everything to be sure m y son can self regulate his gaming and prioritize his time before college.

 

If its only the violent games that are restricted, that's very different than restricting all gaming.

I read some gaming forums and do hear about people who did flunk out of college due to gaming habits.

 

This is how we've approached it. Ds has been allowed M rated games since he was about 13. He plays CoD, Halo, and a few others. I do believe this is an individual or family choice. Some kids can have addictive or violent tendencies with those games. If anything, I think it has done the opposite for my ds. I'd say he's more of a pacifist in nature AFTER playing some of these games. He still plays, just not as much as he used to. I don't play, but we talk about the gaming. One CoD has a zombie add on or something that he likes.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is how we've approached it. Ds has been allowed M rated games since he was about 13. He plays CoD, Halo, and a few others. I do believe this is an individual or family choice. Some kids can have addictive or violent tendencies with those games. If anything, I think it has done the opposite for my ds. I'd say he's more of a pacifist in nature AFTER playing some of these games. He still plays, just not as much as he used to. I don't play, but we talk about the gaming. One CoD has a zombie add on or something that he likes.

 

 

My son is the same way.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

. I'd say he's more of a pacifist in nature AFTER playing some of these games.

 

 

 

Not the same thing, but I notice that Overlord has a calming effect on my dd. She is a perfectionist and is sensitive. She works very hard and demands a great deal of herself. Overlord chills her right out.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My husband is a gamer who prefers first person shooters. My young sons' access to games is restricted to what we feel is age appropriate. Every single game that my boys play, my husband has previewed, finished, and played alongside them. We treat movies exactly the same way. I am much more concerned about Internet safety than video games.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I won't allow ds6 to play games on the computer that have any violence. At his friends place they play in the bedroom without supervision. He begs to go to his friends place every day - this is going to become a problem soon but I can't quite see round it. Luckily I don't have worry about movies and tv because he is scared of most of the unsuitable stuff.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There are LOADS of games out there that aren't gory. Just tell them to pick something else, or read a book. My son is a 'Gamer' but he's too squeamish for gory games. He only plays Minecraft on peaceful mode because he doesn't like the zombies. He's 12 :-)

 

DH on the other hand hadn't played a game since Tetris until Assassin's Creed came out and he decided he wanted it. I feel betrayed. I did not marry a Gamer!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I won't allow ds6 to play games on the computer that have any violence. At his friends place they play in the bedroom without supervision. He begs to go to his friends place every day - this is going to become a problem soon but I can't quite see round it. Luckily I don't have worry about movies and tv because he is scared of most of the unsuitable stuff.

 

 

It doesn't have to be a problem. Talk to the friend's mom and tell her specifically what kinds of games your ds is and is not allowed to play.

 

If she gives you a hard time about it, start inviting the friend to your house, or start looking for a new friend for your ds.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Violent video games are a big fat NO for kids in elementary age, but teenagers? I would not restrict them any more than I'd restrict books that contain violence. It is an emotional outlet and it's fun. I've played Assassin's Creed and Half Life 2 and a few others (so I am several years out of date but I get the concepts). They are all basically solving puzzles, just, with the visceral thrill of getting shot or having to run really really fast if you do not succeed. And getting to blow stuff up if you do succeed. Half Life, like Halo, uses aliens instead of "people".

 

 

Common sense says these kinds of games are not a good idea for kids who lack empathy or who are too fascinated by guns

 

It's not a bad idea to read reviews on IGN to check content beforehand if you're not sure about a title.

 

Also, I personally am squeamish about games set in real life 20th/21st century wars. Controversial titles like "Six Days in Fallujah" are obviously in poor taste but even WWII battles are too close to home for me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My kids want to fit in and be like their friends too. It doesn't mean that we will allow them to do what their friends do.

 

I will never allow my kids to play killing games. I read a book years ago that made the connections between violence and school shootings, backed up with research that video games can negatively change the brain.

 

Other than a Kindle or ipod, we do not own gaming systems, and it will stay that way for as long as possible. I'd rather my kids were outside playing anyway. I'm sure we'll get something someday, but violent games will never be allowed in our home.

 

I'm not debating this at all, and I will likely never change my stance on this issue.

 

 

 

I feel the exact same way and was thinking the same thing when I read that. If I was about my daughter fitting in more than any other thing, I would never have homeschooled her.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Kind of off the topic a little. I had a child come into Wal-Mart several years ago when I was working there. He wanted to buy a rated M game and I told him I was not allowed to sell it to him, that his mother would have to buy it for him if it was ok with her. I thought he was about 12. His mother came over and was very angry with me for not selling him the game. I told her I wasn't allowed to sell M rated games to anyone under 17. She told me her son was 9. :huh: :ohmy:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Kind of off the topic a little. I had a child come into Wal-Mart several years ago when I was working there. He wanted to buy a rated M game and I told him I was not allowed to sell it to him, that his mother would have to buy it for him if it was ok with her. I thought he was about 12. His mother came over and was very angry with me for not selling him the game. I told her I wasn't allowed to sell M rated games to anyone under 17. She told me her son was 9. :huh: :ohmy:

 

What a nut. I hope she understood you were doing the right thing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Huge gaming family here. I think it depend entirely on your child's reaction to playing. My kids are older now, 17 and 12 and we didn't allow gory games when they were little.

We have played through and loved all the Harry Potter games, all the Lego games, Portal 1 and 2, Tomb Raider and the Uncharted series are huge here too. Ni No Kuni is a huge favorite, Little Big Planet and Rayman Origins.

Not a lot of FPS like COD but we have enjoyed many a James Bond game. We are seriously looking forward to The Last of Us in June.

We get obsessed with a new game til we've played it through but then go months without playing at all.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have Call of Duty but I did not allow Assassin's Creed. I have read that Assassin's Creed has sexual content????

 

To me AC looks more bloody, but I may not be up on all of the game's content. I just know my boys' friends have Call of Duty and their parents don't allow AC so my kids haven't even asked for it.

 

Dawn

 

 

 

I have a 12 year old ds who has been wanting to be like his neighborhood friends and play violent video games such as Assassin's Creed and Call of Duty. He keeps telling us that we can turn off the excessive blood but it seems to me that killing is still killing.

Am I too squeamish? I understand that Assassin's Creed is actually educational. And Halo's 4 justifies killing by using aliens instead of humans. But boys have always played with guns and also they go hunting so what's the big deal, so I hear.

Are there other video games that involve fun and challenge but not geeky or nerdy? My son wants to fit in and I do understand that.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I will be the odd man out here. I am ok with some FPS games (Halo, Call of Duty, etc). I have no real fear that my ds will grow up to be a violent killer.

 

However, I don't allow games with sexually explicit material because problems in life related to that kind of material are real and common.

 

If the language is bad in a game then he has to play it with the volume off. I don't want him talking like that.

:iagree:

I have no problem with games that have shooting and blood/gore. We all play them (well not my computer geek dh, they are beneath him) and have great fun.

 

Funny story....I was in Game Stop a while back buying the new COD game and discussing it with the sales man when I noticed this HUGE man (think extra large linebacker) inching his way closer and then working his way around to get a better view of me. WHen he saw I was a woman of considerable age his eyes got so big and he stammered quite loudly "YOU play COD!?!"....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No violent games here, but then again, we didn't let our children read the Goosebumps series. It wasn't the fear that it would turn them into a violent person. It just seemed like it made more sense to fill their brains with things/images that were good and positive.

 

Don't mean to come off as judgmental; this is just a choice we made. I do know really nice families who play those games.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think a nice grownup could play all sorts of terrible games

and still stay nice. I have evidence of many nice college age and

up people who played horrible games and went on to be peaceful

great people.

 

I think a young kid might be affected, though, and it might depend

on his age.

 

I'm not sure though because we don't have any games at our house

and when we did for 1 year they were non-violent.

 

And I don't know what age would be affected. That would be

interesting to find out.

 

Anyone have articles to link? I think a PP had some research?

 

 

The book, Boys Adrift, has a very informative chapter, backed by research, on video gaming and brain development.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have heard there is a lot of coordination developed by users of such games, but I can't stomach the violence.

 

There are shooter games in which the shooting device is not exactly a gun. For example, the wii game Elebits, in which shooting captures blobs of energy type things.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

18 years ago, I never would have believed that I'd type and post the following.

 

I do believe that the impact on the developing brain is significant in younger years. As such, I do take an active, involved, censoring and restricting role.

 

That level of involvement reduces as the child matures and ages.

 

I very rarely censor, restrict, or manage gaming now for my 18 and 14 year old. They are good gaming regulators, and are not at risk in other ways for that issue.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No, Bill? I was afraid of that. Oh, well.

 

We've decided not to buy the games but we will let him play them at friends's houses and also to borrow them. We're not worried that he will grow up to be a killer or whatever but we just think there are better ways to spend money and time. The book, Boys Adrift, sounds intriguing so we might change our minds again later after reading it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...