Violence mars the release of GTA IV

Screen from GTA IV

GTA IV seems to have caused quite a stir so far after receiving a myriad of perfect scores from the likes of IGN and 360 Magazine.

Sadly the only attention it seems to have received in the mainstream press seems to have been related to its violent content. Many reports on the radio have mentioned the dangers of violent videogames in the hands of children yet again but some, such as Scotland’s 96.3 Rock Radio, were also careful to point out that the game was not intended for children.

Unfortunately today’s headlines have been even worse. The Metro reports,“GTA fan knifed in shop queue”. The fan was stabbed in the head and back whilst queuing for the release of the game at a branch of Gamestation in Croydon, south London. An onlooker was quoted as saying, “It was like a scene from the game itself.” An eighteen-year-old boy was left with a broken jaw and nose for his copy as he walked home from a store in Leyland, Lancashire.

The headlines highlight the reluctance of the national newspapers to step back from their scape-goating of violent videogames. Since similar scenes were witnessed in the US over the release of the PS3 and we have frequently been told of violent scenes as people search for the must-have gifts at Christmas time, we must remember that this sort of violence is not confined solely to the videogames market.

The common factor here is people after all…

This also appears on ScottishGames.biz.

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