Germany To Ban Violent Games, Paintball, Laser Tag, Gladiator Movies

Well, they’ve backed down from paintball and laser tag, but Germany seems set to demand a halt on the sales and production of “Killerspielen” – violent video games – in the wake of a recent high school massacre. No English-language stories on this yet, but Der Spiegel, a German tabloid, has this (apologies for the mangling of my bad high school German and worse Google translation):

The interior ministers of 16 federal states, at a conference on Friday in Bremerhaven, took a far-reaching decision against so-called “killer games”, with the department heads requesting "an explicit production and sales ban as soon as possible."

Under consideration for prohibition by the interior ministries are games in which realistic killing is an integral part of the plot – or even "other cruel acts of violence against human or human-like beings."

"Playing ‘killer games’ reduces one’s inhibitions to violence," said Lower Saxony Interior Minister Uwe Schünemann in an online message. "Repeatedly, people who have committed these sorts of crimes have played such games." The CDU politician called on the Bundestag to put forward a ban on the production and dissemination on these games as soon as possible.

If I read this correctly, to cast into US political terms, this is essentially a group of state agencies demanding that Congress take action. The CDU is the chief right-wing conservative party in Germany, but it’s unclear from the story if this initiative has multi-party support.

Germany had, until now anyway, a thriving video game production industry, including leading FPS developer Crytek.

Game Politics has more (well, a bit more).

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55 Responses to Germany To Ban Violent Games, Paintball, Laser Tag, Gladiator Movies

  1. Raad says:

    Germany does something crazy. Well that’s new. Snarkiness aside, yeah they have been leading the censorship thing in the EU unless someone wants to correct me.

  2. Daniel says:

    “Repeatedly, people who have committed these sorts of crimes have played such games.”

    True enough. But so have millions of people who haven’t done so.

    What’s the point again?

  3. Amaranthar says:

    Nothing like going too far.

    First thing that comes to mind is the politics. Over here in the US, we’ve had plenty said against video violence from both conservatives and liberals alike. I’d be surprised if it’s any different over there, but politics are in play for votes right now. So who knows how that’ll play out.

    Second thing to come to mind is that most of us looking at violence in games are not against it totally. Most of us are looking at extremes, such as extreme gore, violence connected to sex, beheadings, execution style killings, things like that. We’d also like to see some sort of “crime doesn’t pay” message in games, but that’s on a lesser level than the extreme depictions.

    Unfortunately, the game industry is pushing the envelope because people want to sell, and the easiest way is to get publicity through cheap extremes. And equally unfortunate is that the extremes against anything “violent” at all are at the forefront of actions against extreme violence in games.

    Why is it so hard to find the middle ground? It’s not really. But every action has a reaction. The gaming industry needs to recognize this, and ask themselves, WTF are we doing? Hopefully, voters will do the same.

  4. Longasc says:

    I am from Germany. There is indeed an ongoing debate about banning violent first person shooters. This has been the case for years by now, and the demanded total ban did not happen. Some games even got their rating lowered to teen. The same debate always flares up again after each massacre that people cannot explain.

    I think it is blind actionism. It will not stop massacres. It will also not make such politicians and parties more attractive to voters. I guess it will cost them about as much younger (<40!) voters than they might win among older voters who might accept violent computer games as dangerous.

  5. taodon says:

    “Playing ‘killer games’ reduces one’s inhibitions to violence,”

    Really? I would argue that one’s inhibition to violence is delayed by the availability of these games. But what do I know?

  6. geldonyetich says:

    Honestly, I’ve never found violence to be all that essential to the process of enjoyment in games. The brain just wants something to occupy it, it doesn’t need the focus of that occupation to be violent in nature.

    That said, there’s really no dividing line between video games and other media. If a fellow is unbalanced enough to think a murder spree/suicide is a good idea, he’s as likely to derive motivation doing it from a movie or a book as he is a game. Shooting sprees pre-date video games considerably.

    If you really wanted to solve the problem, you’d push community involvement. Make it mandatory that neighbors keep tabs on each other to the point where it can be detected somebody is that far to going over the edge and they can get the help they need before it happens. However, many (most?) people would say that such a common-sense prevention measure has an unacceptable privacy impact. There’s also the problem that there’s really not enough of a psychological support mechanism in society yet.

  7. Queso says:

    I loaned out my copy of Sid Meier’s Pirates to a friend.

    He complained it wasnt Violent enough. :/

  8. Amaranthar says:

    geldonyetich :

    If you really wanted to solve the problem, you’d push community involvement. Make it mandatory that neighbors keep tabs on each other to the point where it can be detected somebody is that far to going over the edge and they can get the help they need before it happens. However, many (most?) people would say that such a common-sense prevention measure has an unacceptable privacy impact. There’s also the problem that there’s really not enough of a psychological support mechanism in society yet.

    Would you want people like these, related in this article and going overboard on violence in games, keeping an eye on you? You’d probably be locked up as dangerous right now, or undergoing “treatment”.

  9. geldonyetich says:

    Would you want people like these, related in this article and going overboard on violence in games, keeping an eye on you? You’d probably be locked up as dangerous right now, or undergoing “treatment”.

    Alarmist bullshit. Really, that’s only if they’re really bad at it, and with luck, they’d get better with practice.

    Personally, I thought it was really telling that when my brother went through a seriously suicidal patch, we’d take him down to the nearest center that could offer him something remotely near help – some 30 miles away – and they’d basically look him over and send him home. There, several (fortunately unsuccessful) attempts would take place.

    It seems that my society really sucks when it comes to handling psychological problems. It’s hard to say from where I’m sitting if the land of Sigmund Freud does much better.

    Now, whenever I see these shooting sprees, I’ve a much better perspective on why it happens: we generally don’t bother to take the right (or even any) measures to prevent it. In any shooting spree you can look up, there’s often a number of preliminary warnings the shooter was well on edge, with access to weapons and the motivation to use them. They were ignored as too hard to deal with. The result was, if anything, predictable.

  10. geldonyetich says:

    Besides, I wouldn’t be a bad place to start. “A lonely and frustrated person who felt rejected by society” describes me fairly well. Fortunately, my coping mechanisms aren’t so screwed up as to find murdering the neighbors to be all that conductive to a solution. Of course, given the current recession, this label describes a lot of us. Save your Prozac, here’s the “treatment” I need: a half-decent job placement agency.

  11. unwesen says:

    In all fairness, Der Spiegel also published a very different commentary on the current video game witchhunt: http://www.spiegel.de/netzwelt/web/0,1518,628017,00.html (babelfish: http://66.196.80.202/babelfish/translate_url_content?.intl=us&lp=de_en&trurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.spiegel.de%2Fnetzwelt%2Fweb%2F0%2C1518%2C628017%2C00.html , google translate: http://209.85.229.132/translate_c?hl=en&ie=UTF-8&sl=de&tl=en&u=http://www.spiegel.de/netzwelt/web/0,1518,628017,00.html&prev=_t&rurl=translate.google.com&usg=ALkJrhhWl0eA58rneVBklXcJVZ0nC8q5Rw )

  12. I really disagree with banning any sort of video game. Perhaps agre restriction licenses and parenting are the problem if young people are being exposed to mature games they’re not ready for.

    It boggles my mind. It’s not like violence is a new thing…

  13. Gx1080 says:

    First, this its just reactionary politics aka using a scapegoat. Second, ESRB people. That a parent let their 13 year old son play GTA its another history. Althoug ive found that it doesnt affect much. In words of the great Chris Rock:
    “They are seacrhing the music they hear, the games they play. What about crazy, cant we have crazy?”

  14. Centurion says:

    It’s an election year here in Germany, so this is just fishing for votes. If any real legislation ever comes out of this, I’ll be surprised and horrified. The law to ban paintball et al was already in parliament for decision and they backpedaled at the last minute. Videogames are far more mainstream, so I doubt it will be different there. What disturbs me more is that all the people who are too tech-illiterate to even write an e-mail feel entitled to spew unfounded bullshit in public and nobody calls them on it.

    By the way, Der Spiegel is not any run-of-the-mill tabloid but pretty much THE most reputable weekly newsmag in Germany. The journalistic quality of their website is a far cry (tee hee) from the print version though.

  15. geldonyetich :
    Honestly, I’ve never found violence to be all that essential to the process of enjoyment in games. The brain just wants something to occupy it, it doesn’t need the focus of that occupation to be violent in nature.

    At this year’s LOGIN conference, Scott Rigby of Immersyve gave an interesting talk about how violence really doesn’t add to the game, according to the research they’ve done. The only thing that violence does is increase the interest of people who are identified as being aggressive, from what I remember. The exact presentation isn’t online from anywhere I can see, but here’s a quick search on their site with a few related articles: http://immersyve.com/index.php?s=violence

    From a game design point of view, it’s important to have conflict in games to keep them interesting. But, that conflict doesn’t always have to be violent. But, sometimes violence is a good way to tell the story at hand. A story about war that includes violence shouldn’t be surprising, for example.

  16. Siddar says:

    Spree killers copy other spree killers. They are mentaly disturbed and they gravitate to information of other previous spree killers.

    Banning violent video games and paintball wont have any effect because the games are not the cause of the person being mentaly disturded in the first place. They also are not the primary rolemodel fixxation for spree killers. That Primary rolemodels being other spree killers.

    I dont think ive seen a single reported spree killer in the internet age that was not obsessed with other spree killers.

  17. geldonyetich says:

    @Psychochild

    Interesting observation: that violent acts may indeed have a solid association with violent video games in that people who are prone to violent acts will indeed be attracted to violent video games.

    Maybe the best solution is to make violent video games freely available, but dangle them as bait, and whoever snatches them up in unusually copious amounts might be due for a psychiatric evaluation. Japanese rape games come to mind as one such case where that might seem even more justified. Last I heard, you can be prosecuted to have in your possession child pornography – there reaches a certain level in which the sick fuckery cannot be denied.

    Lately I’ve been playing a bit of Sims 3. Outside of the schadenfreude that comes from watching those comically (at times tragically) human Sims burn to death when they foolishly attempt to use an oven without cooking skill, or various other torture scenarios, it is indeed a massive title that does well without the use of violence.

  18. IainC says:

    As someone who works for a German ‘killerspiele’ developer I was going to write about this on my own blog as soon as some decent English sources popped up to cite. Sadly, the rest of the world isn’t taking nearly enough notice at the moment.

    If no legislation will ‘probably’ come of it, that’s not good enough. The fact that it’s being presented before the Congress should make people sit up and pay attention.

  19. Gx1080 says:

    Oh come on. Since when the things that politics say in election time become true? That said the lack of interest of, i dont know, sending people to psycologists or making parents -gasp- actually care instead of working 3 shifts. But thats me.

  20. Mortarion says:

    geldonyetich :
    Maybe the best solution is to make violent video games freely available, but dangle them as bait, and whoever snatches them up in unusually copious amounts might be due for a psychiatric evaluation.

    I really hope you’re not serious.

  21. JuJutsu says:

    Mortarion :

    geldonyetich :Maybe the best solution is to make violent video games freely available, but dangle them as bait, and whoever snatches them up in unusually copious amounts might be due for a psychiatric evaluation.

    I really hope you’re not serious.

    I don’t doubt for a second that he’s serious.

  22. TPRJones says:

    geldonyetich :
    If you really wanted to solve the problem, you’d push community involvement. Make it mandatory that neighbors keep tabs on each other to the point where it can be detected somebody is that far to going over the edge and they can get the help they need before it happens. However, many (most?) people would say that such a common-sense prevention measure has an unacceptable privacy impact.

    Are you being serious? I’d be much more concerned with the fact that you’ve essentially suggested that Germans should start keeping a close eye on their neighbors and marching in lockstep once more. They do have a bit of a bad history with that sort of thing you know. It could turn quite ugly.

  23. TPRJones says:

    The following quotes would have been equally true and relevant:

    “Repeatedly, people who have committed these sorts of crimes have attended public schools.”

    “Repeatedly, people who have committed these sorts of crimes have consumed carbonated beverages.”

    “Repeatedly, people who have committed these sorts of crimes have grown up celebrating their birthdays every year.”

    “Repeatedly, people who have committed these sorts of crimes have eaten pizza.”

    “Repeatedly, people who have committed these sorts of crimes have masturbated regularly.”

    … I think you get my take on this.

  24. geldonyetich says:

    I really hope you’re not serious.

    I don’t doubt for a second that he’s serious.

    Lets just say that, when you’ve heard this debate go on long enough, you might decide to stop going through the same old circles and instead apply yourself to brainstorming some interesting new answers.

    Of course, we fear change.

    I’m only as serious as anyone in the brainstorming phase. Which is to say, early seed ideas are always things you’re well advised to investigate further before taking action.

    What psychochild brought up was interesting. Violent video games don’t cause violence, but they may attract people with violent tendencies.

    Now, I think everybody has a little bit of madness inside of them, it comes out every time we lose our temper (for example). The question isn’t whether or not these qualities exist within us, but the question of the extent of those qualities.

    Put it all together, and what do we have? If, indeed, violent media attracts those of violent nature, it may be used as an indicator to determine which people may be in need of investigation.

  25. geldonyetich says:

    If, indeed, violent media attracts those of violent nature, it may be used as an indicator to determine which people may be in need of investigation.

    I’m trying to carefully word this, as it’s easily misinterpretted (especially if you’ve hair sensibilities). There’s a difference between “may be in need of investigation” and “OMG, they play video games, they must be violent sociopaths who need to be tossed in the clink.”

    Let me try a scenario to explain what I’m talking about. Lets say you’re able to tell who plays what (yes, I know, a really big technical hurdle waved away). Of the games played, 99% of the population or less plays a relatively average amount of violent video games out of all the games they play. However, amongst the other 1% of the population, about a quarter of those (0.25% of the population) plays a significantly higher ratio of violent video games out of all the games they play.

    Does this mean that these individuals are going to go on a killing spree and need to be tossed in the clink for our own safety? No. It may indicate, however, that they do have a higher than usual degree of fixation of violence. We won’t know until we investigate, so we send some people over there to do that.

    Is it really that irrational that we send qualified people to investigate people who have a tendency to consume a much higher degree of violent media than the majority of the population to determine if they are, or are not, imbalanced?

    Love or hate this logic, you’ve got to admit, it’s a lot more reasoned than, “OMG BAN VIOLENT VIDEO GAMES THEY’RE POISONING OUR KIDS MINDS!” This is the kind of things our politicians would be more likely to do if they didn’t think we were idiots who get lynch-happy over any solution that isn’t incredibly simple (and consequently doomed to fail).

  26. geldonyetich says:

    Is it really that irrational that we send qualified people to investigate people who have a tendency to consume a much higher degree of violent media than the majority of the population to determine if they are, or are not, imbalanced?

    Actually, I can already see where this is going to go.

    “Not normally, but then, I think the people in charge are complete incompetents who would handle it like a batch of ravenous conservative fascist thought police instead of anything resembling rationality.”

    What can I say? If society is that screwed up, we’ve got bigger problems than violent video games. Maybe even bigger problems than shooting sprees. If you can’t trust those who you have granted authority to be the ones responsible to actually act responsibly, it seems the first step is to fix that.

  27. Imp says:

    geldonyetich :

    If you really wanted to solve the problem, you’d push community involvement. Make it mandatory that neighbors keep tabs on each other to the point where it can be detected somebody is that far to going over the edge and they can get the help they need before it happens. However, many (most?) people would say that such a common-sense prevention measure has an unacceptable privacy impact. There’s also the problem that there’s really not enough of a psychological support mechanism in society yet.

    Hmmm I seem to recall that German government had a program mandating neighbors watching and reporting neighbors back in the 1930’s…. that one worked out really well…

  28. J. says:

    Germany: Land of No Fun.

    At some point, they’re going to realize that prohibition tends to lead to internal strife. Given their history, they ought to try social reform, or at least realize that they need to give their psychos something to do. If this kid had still been playing Far Cry, he wouldn’t have gone on a real life shooting rampage.

  29. geldonyetich says:

    Hmmm I seem to recall that German government had a program mandating neighbors watching and reporting neighbors back in the 1930’s. that one worked out really well

    Depends on what you mean by “working well.”

    The obvious negative suggestion that thought policing and book burning becomes the norm in order to forward a new agenda of world-domination… not what my fellow liberals would call “working well,” but I wager the ultraconservatives will jump on board with that idea. (Personally, I would attribute Nazi Germany to rampant nationalism.)

    What I’m thinking of is much tamer. More along the lines of wider adaptation of the neighborhood watch program to include psychological social support mechanisms for troubled families.

    Anywho, nevermind. I realize to a great extent I’m pulling the same mistake Owain was about defending Darkfall Online here: there’s a problem of proximity to really discuss this.

    This really isn’t the place to seriously discuss where the violence in video games discussion would go if it weren’t merely a platform for kneejerk political grandstanding. This is more a place people will go to unwind during/after a busy work day to guffaw at the great lunacy of the world behind a shield of our own superiority that demands our own foundations must be solid.

    If anything, my little tirades should be regarded as yet more lunacy to prod. Justly, too. It doesn’t take more than a sideways glance to surmise it is indeed a mad, mad world.

  30. EpicSquirt says:

    Lum:

    “DER SPIEGEL” is not a tabloid, it’s a weekly (printed) magazine, acknowledged and reputable.
    “Spiegel Online” is an online tabloid, you can find articles from the printed version of “DER SPIEGEL” there, online only articles from the editorial staff from “DER SPIEGEL”, but usually you will find articles there from a different editorial staff and a lot of news agency reports.

    What you quote as your source is a news agency report, they’re usually full of shit and no better than a yellow press headline.

    The suggested ban will never pass, otherwise you will witness all the Counterstrike players (and other FPS-players like me) voting for the pirate party (Piratenpartei) at Bundestag elections in 2014, which just got ~0.9% in Germany in the EU elections (~43% of allowed people participated) and secured state funding (0.5% is the mark).

    Germany’s ministers of the interior are strange people, the one from Bavaria compared “killer games” (a term politicians in Germany use for Counterstrike-like games) to molesting children.

    Effectively they’re removing themselves from the power. It will just take some time for them to realize and by that time it will be too late, in 10 years Germany will have a party which is internet-amiable in the Bundestag.

    The “thriving video game production industry” in Germany must have been in the 90’ies for the Amiga/early gaming PCs, I don’t know any big name besides of CryTek, all the others seem to be doing web-based games for all the people who have too much time at work :P.

  31. Bluecypher says:

    I live in Austria and we get a very good view of the happening right across the german borders here. I don’t think the issue is as easily downplayed as many here seem to think “Oh it’s just election bullshit”. German politics have taken a very aggressive stance against shooters over the last few years. A few very prominent, publicity starving store chains have so far banned or totally restricted sale of shooters to the point where you are required to go ask a clerk specifically for let’s say Counter Strike (which is like teh debil there) and provide your ID before he is required to answer you.

    It is scapegoat phenomenon, but it has outgrown the ridcule that seems to be common sense on the net. We’re not talking about some crazy nutjob talking things no one will take serious. This particular idea (the ban on shooters) has become political mainstream in Germany, and please don’t forget we are talking about the first western democratic country that passed a law on internet censorship because local filtering of websites is GOOD FOR YOU and if you’re against arbitrary blacklisting of websites by the ministry of internal affairs you automatically are a child molester supporter.

    By the way, the country of Sigmund Freud is Austria, we don’t let the germans take him away from us :P!

  32. Flimgoblin says:

    Ask a forensic scientist:

    (cheers RPS for the link, keep missing my newswipe on regular telly)

    I would have thought that this would be one country that would have built some extra safety into its political system to prevent people going on a crusade to victimise/scapegoat part of its population as a means to get votes.

  33. Caya says:

    Another Austrian here *waves at Bluecypher*. Yep, German politicians are a bit nuts about violence – there’s an EU-wide rating system that’s been accepted by all countries save one, guess which … and since Austria’s too small a market we often enough get the uber-censored German versions as well, so we’re a bit sore about this issue (for once our politicians are not *that* stupid, and see what a difference it makes). Nevertheless, I don’t think this’ll pass – but then again I wouldn’t have believed their ridiculous omg bad molesters censorship law would pass either, so there ya go.

  34. IainC says:

    I posted my take on this here.

  35. EpicSquirt says:

    @Caya
    You might want to take a look at the way a German law has to pass before it is a law – http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gesetzgebungsverfahren_(Deutschland) – it is still a draft, our Federal Government can try as much as it wants, there some other parties who can still wreck the suggested law or change it.

    Even if it passes as it is now, which I doubt, as all experts say that it is a bad idea technically and that it violates constitutional laws – http://www.morgenpost.de/politik/article1101097/Von_der_Leyen_will_Kinderporno_Gesetz_aendern.html – Federal President has to sign it off and he will not sign it off when it the Constitutional Court is going to revoke the law anyway (he has been there, done that, same goes for the court).

    Relax people and keep ordering the UK-versions. I’ve been doing so since early 90’ies, I don’t want to play localized/changed versions, I also watch original movies only.

  36. IainC says:

    @EpicSquirt
    Consumers have a choice to import their games, those of us who work in the industry in Germany will suffer a rather more drastic inconvenience.

  37. EpicSquirt says:

    @IainC
    I agree and I’m not happy about the situation from the developer’s point of view either.

  38. chabuhi says:

    I’m not against violence in video games. But I am kind of against violence being the only thing in a video game. Also, having been impaired by parenthood, I am supportive of reasonable efforts to help keep young kids away from the Blood & Boobs (TM). But I’m always uneasy with government intervention in these things.

  39. Wanderer says:

    people who have committed these sorts of crimes have played such games

    People who have committed these sorts of crimes are alive and breathing.

    In fact, all crime is committed by the living.

    “The crime is life, the sentence is death!”

  40. Arkenor says:

    I would ask the question “Have you ever been effected psychologically by a game?”.

    I know of many people who’ve mentioned that they sometimes carry on playing a game in their head after the computer is shut down, especially when trying to get to sleep.

    I’m not saying that we need laws to ban anything, but I sometimes think the kneejerk reaction we have, that games couldn’t possibly influence us, is not always in line with our own personal experiences.

  41. paul says:

    You missed the most important one that strangely (not!) never seems to get a mention (given the amount of cash involved).
    “Repeatedly, people who have committed these sorts of crimes were taking antidepressants.”

  42. TPRJones says:

    Ah, but that one might actually be relevent. I was providing other examples that have as much likely causality as that from the original quote. 🙂

  43. TPRJones says:

    Arkenor :
    I know of many people who’ve mentioned that they sometimes carry on playing a game in their head after the computer is shut down, especially when trying to get to sleep.

    I have experienced that effect as well, especially when I’ve been playing a racing game and then go get in my car. But it doesn’t mean I then go shooting off down the freeway at full speed, sliding through the corners and smashing into the other cars!

    Any such effects are completely momentary and easily controllable by 100% of rational and sane people. This is not an issue of “the game made me do it” or “I couldn’t tell the game from reality”. The real reasons here are “the killer is a fucking psycho” and “maybe if we blame the games we don’t have to blame ourselves (or the parents/teachers/etc)”. Blaming the games is an easy answer that is strictly a refuge for the ignorant and the guilty.

  44. Grokk says:

    That reminds me, last night I did the WoW torture quest in Borean Tundra on an alt. This is the 4th or 5th time I’ve done it, and at this point I’m pretty well desensitized and just clicked through it. This does not make me want to do anything like that in real life.

    Still, I wonder if that quest is enough to put WoW in the category of games the interior ministers are worried about?

  45. Vetarnias says:

    Hmm, on this subject, I’m not too sure what prompted the move. I doubt it can be compared with the American source for banning such games, which always seems inevitably connected to the Christian Right. What’s going on in Germany? I’m not sure, but I suspect that Germans are now hypersensitive to questions of violence because of the excesses of the 20th century.

    And if Germany is shifting right, it’s probably more appropriate to compare it to the rightward shift in France. Not being European (and not reading German), it is difficult for me to find specific causes for this, but I doubt it has to do with the situation in the United States, as the rest of the world was aghast at what Bush and Company were doing.

    Still, there are morally reprehensible games out there, beginning with that sacrosanct Grand Theft Auto franchise, which just proves that controversy sells. Something ought to be done about that, and if the Germans can manage it, I will congratulate them. But I know that Rockstar will just slap a big “Banned in Germany!” on the box wrapping of future installments and it will be “business as usual”.

  46. IainC says:

    @Vetarnias
    There’s a clue in the very first paragraph of the post (hint: also try googling ‘Winnenden’ and ‘shooting’).

  47. yunk says:

    Nothing to do with the “right”, look at american politics and people on both sides want to regulate human behavior and take freedoms away “for the common good” or “for your own good”. The difference is here most of that crap is stopped by our Constitution, which in most cases gets enforced and those laws get thrown out. Sometimes they get by, there is a lot of control here.

    But Europe has always been far more controlling of people’s freedoms than we in the US have been. They dont’ have the tradition of their countries very founding on the idea of liberty, so they just don’t have those ideas deeply ingrained. I’m sure there are many reasons. But in the end, Germany, France, Italy, et.al. are always going to be some of the worst of the “free” West that will regulate and control their own people “for their own good”. This is nothing new, and truthfully it’s nothing to scoff at or ridicule. It’s a symptom of a horrible disease of do-gooders wanting to run other people’s lives, and it goes far beyond games.

  48. Iconic says:

    I wonder if Hitler played violent video games.

  49. geldonyetich says:

    Hitler’s violent video game needs manifested as a LARP gone waaay to far.

  50. JuJutsu says:

    Iconic :I wonder if Hitler played violent video games.

    Well we know he wanted to be in the Darkfall beta 🙂

  51. Ges says:

    Well, in absolute fear of Goodwins Law I have skipped all comments, so please do forgive if this point was raised.

    Germany has ‘a thing’ with violence.
    We’re told to avoid bullies at school, we’re punished heavily for any form of violence. We discourage it in movies and games and we have in the past indexed games.

    Now, everyone crying foul, may I say the words: Jackson, Timberlake, Super Bowl.
    The FCC has since then hunted down anything that shows nudity or any form of sexuality. I am still not convinced that I find keeping violence in check worse then crying out ‘Shame!’ when someone shows a curve.

  52. Stabs says:

    In the end I suspect it’s a vote loser to enact such legislation. It may also be counter to someone’s human rights which means they could take the government to the European Court of Justice which is a higher legislature.

    I strongly suspect it’s political posturing by people who want to appear “tough on crime” without simply raising taxes to hire more police.

  53. Wanderer says:

    Miso sad, nobody got my Judge Dredd reference. 😦

  54. Tmon says:

    I would like to point out that the CDU may be considered a right wing party in Germany but compared to US parties it would be slightly to the left of the Democrats.

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