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EDGE: Call of Duty's disturbing message

Call of Duty might be just a game, but its underlying message is becoming more and more troubling - EDGE

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allformats875d ago (Edited 875d ago )

It's not only Call of Duty, but Battlefield, Homefront, Medal of Honor and almost all other modern day military shooters...

But that shouldn't be a problem, as movies do it all the game, and parents and teachers should be responsible for teaching children truth and history.

We're now mixing good ole entertainment with real life events like Fox News....

Septic875d ago

"But that shouldn't be a problem, as movies do it all the game, and parents and teachers should be responsible for teaching children truth and history. "

Huh? Firstly, it doesn't excuse movies doing it. Secondly, who is responsible for teaching the parents of these children? This isn't just about propaganda affecting the mind of young kids, it also includes adults.

"We're now mixing good ole entertainment with real life events like Fox News...."

I would say Fox News itself is 'good ole entertainment' if you treat it as you should, a comedy.

This whole 'its entertainment' argument is ridiculous when considering the context. If the industry is to mature, it needs escape the confines of restrictive narrative and propaganda.

If its just entertainment, then I dare a developer to release a sequel to Freedom Fighters where you play a protagonist from the Middle East who has to kill American soldiers who have invaded his country.

Thehyph875d ago

I'd play that game. It might scare some people and be controversial, but the story would probably be better than almost all modern shooters.

Battlefield 3 comes to mind. I tried playing through that campaign. What a joke. Terrorists, Iran, nuclear threat... the game was almost a lesson in fear mongering. It's like the game tried to give you some idea that the west is danger, that the situation is dire, and that through these means, the game not only tries to take away any meaningful thought on why you're slaughtering guys in turbans, but that you're actually justified in doing so.

That was my take anyway.
Also, that game was awful. Maybe the seventeenth time will be the charm for DICE making a good open world shooter with vehicles.

mydyingparadiselost875d ago (Edited 875d ago )

' I dare a developer to release a sequel to Freedom Fighters where you play a protagonist from the Middle East who has to kill American soldiers who have invaded his country.'
That game would have NSA personnel EVERYWHERE.

TradingWarStories875d ago

I haven't played a story on any FPS game sine Call of Duty 4, this is why I love UNCHARTED AND NAUGHTY DOG! They can develop great stories and Multiplayer.(Last of us MP is one of the most refreshing experience's since I started online gaming.)

SilentNegotiator875d ago (Edited 875d ago )

@Septic
How does a sh***y news program compare to a video game? No one refers to the news as "just entertainment"

@mydyingparadiselost
At least it wouldn't be banned in the US, as the reverse frequently is in other countries.

Septic875d ago

@Silent

"How does a sh***y news program compare to a video game? No one refers to the news as "just entertainment" "

It doesn't; allformats brought up the comparison. I was joking about how comical the so-called news channel is.

SilentNegotiator875d ago

Okay, I see. But then how are two COD games in a row with the US as the underdog "restrictive narrative and propaganda"?

Septic875d ago

@Silent

"But then how are two COD games in a row with the US as the underdog "restrictive narrative and propaganda"

I didn't single out COD here, I said " If the industry is to mature..."

Also, I'd just like to add, the US not being an underdog but still being portrayed as the saviour of the planet against the Middle East, Russia for years doesn't exactly help. This includes all COD games from the Modern Warfare series too (among possibly others).

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MightyNoX875d ago (Edited 875d ago )

Maybe you're right, it's still food for thought tho. Remember, unlike movies videogame are an interactive medium.

So, this article reminded me of this one YouTube video: http://youtu.be/UP4_bMhZ4gA

HammadTheBeast875d ago

Games sell most in the US, so make the US the underdog.

Easy to piece together.

SilentNegotiator875d ago

An entire TWO games in a row with the US as the underdogs?!

OMG TEH PROPAGANDA
/s

brettski874d ago

keep getting your info from msnbc and showing the world how enlightened you are.....

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Budobear875d ago

Its an interesting article and one that should spark a good internal debate at developers when writing their stories. Its easy to see why its done....no one likes the idea of being the bully. WWII games were safe ground as for the most part the Allies were the under-dogs, translating that to modern day is very difficult.

caseh875d ago (Edited 875d ago )

If you ain't British or American, you're clearly the enemy.

Killzone = British voiced space Nazis, credit where its due. it's a bit different. :)

MightyNoX875d ago

Which is pretty sad because I love the Helghast. Their design is so reminiscent of Mamoru Oshii's works..

Thehyph875d ago

Mercenary had possibly the best story because it wasn't as black and white. The ISA ended up being the greater of two evils in that game because of its leader.

At least that was my take on it.

IanVanCheese875d ago

The British as the bad guys is hardly a new thing, the USA loves to make us the baddies

caseh875d ago

In movies yah, not so much in games. The SAS segments in the COD:MW games are one of the games redeeming qualities, for me at least.

SilentNegotiator875d ago (Edited 875d ago )

It balances out with all of the American media where the Brits are all refined geniuses and the Americans are derping idiots. Hipster fools in the US transcend simply being Anglophiles and think that the entirety of Europe is an absolute perfect paradise.

cyphertech875d ago

As a member of the American military, we have a more realistic view of our mission than COD or Battlefield does. Most of us don't think we should be in Afghanistan and long lost the image of heroism that the mission once had. Call of duty primarily focuses on an unrealistic view of the Special Operations community that even America shares, one of sheer invincibility and moral certainty. This is not the case. The American military's morale is at an all time low and has continued to stay that way because our entire reputation has been turned to shit by illegal wars, unethical drone warfare and hit lists, and decreasing support from the American population. It doesn't help that Call of Duty endorses this Good vs Evil concept of armed conflict as well as full blown torture.

Psychotica875d ago

So what is the alternative? You want a game about the elite army of Portugal fighting off terrorists from Ireland? How about a game that has the fierce army of Iceland fighting off an invasion from the army of Fiji?

Thehyph875d ago

There have been many alternatives throughout the years.

Within the shooter genre you can resort to modern fiction, alternate history, written history, science fiction, and anything else that a writer chooses to explore.

Resistance, Half-Life, Halo, Doom, Left 4 Dead, etc.
Maybe even a (slightly) cerebral experience like Spec Ops: The Line.

_FantasmA_875d ago

Why not? They are fictional games anyways.

LightofDarkness875d ago (Edited 875d ago )

That all makes sense to Americans because they're somewhat national-centric. There seems to be an inability for them to engage in a story unless it affects them directly, which is narrow-minded and somewhat arrogant ("nothing of significance happens to anyone but the US"). The rest of us haven't had much issue playing the same, tired "America wins and everyone foreign is evil" scenarios.

Consider this: in the not-so-distant future, the UK fends off some sort of radical EU assault as a consequence of their complicity with the US in their wars. That's an interesting story and scenario, which has many intriguing themse and plot point, i.e. re-opening scars from old Europe and buried resentments post-WW2, as well as the UK's seeming alienation from the EU of late. You could have a United States, weary and so economically battered from continued wars and globalization that they've finally decided to pursue a non-interventionist foreign policy, leaving their once-allies to their fate. I'm not even British and that sounds like an interesting "modern war" scenario to me, at least more so than your average COD plot line.

MestreRothN4G875d ago

Those are closer to reality than Murica 'saving the world' through endless wars and invasions economically reasoned.

You don't even need an alternate history to get some background. You could play as a resistant to the yankees' recurring slaughters for oil and influence. Oh, but that would hurt some strong and constantly fed lies, so it's easier to rehash CoD no mind stories...

Tetsujin875d ago

Socom

Really thought I'm at a current burnout of Military shooters. They can film, "be there," and "talk" to soldiers all they want; unless they are actively there in the middle of a conflict they will never know.

tommygunzII875d ago

In SOCOM you went after kingpin drug dealers and arms dealers.

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