Game Producer Quest, Part 12

In an update to the whole Ni no Kuni Wizard Edition fiasco, I finally received an email today assuring me that the guide (which I already own) will be mailed to me soon, and that there are no additional steps I need to undergo on my end.  I remain somewhat skeptical, but it was nice to finally hear something.  Up to this point, there had been zero communication from Namco Bandai.

So in Connecticut, Republican DebraLee Hovey is proposing a 10% “sin” tax with regards to “violent” video games, with the money from said tax going towards the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services.  The details can be found in this article.

There are some things that I take issue with.  In the article I linked, Hovey is quoted as saying:

“In my mind, we do not need to be glorifying violence,…What about murder and mayhem have become entertainment in our society? I think that putting a sin tax — and in my mind this is a sin tax — on the M-rated video games … will cause people to think about what they are actually purchasing.”

Whatever violence is found in the entertainment we consume, whether it be video games, television, movies, etc., I don’t think glorification is necessarily involved.  There may be glorification certainly, but the idea that all entertainment that has violence equals glorification of violence is a notion I don’t agree with.

Let me say that I am awful when it comes to history.  Everything historical I have ever read or learned in school, I have likely forgotten.  So I may be incorrect in what I am about to say, but the idea of murder and mayhem being entertainment in human society is not something exclusive to the past few decades.  The gladiatorial games were certainly a form of entertainment, and in those days people were trying to kill each other for our entertainment.  Public executions were yet another form of entertainment for people.  If anything, we’re probably doing a far better job nowadays condemning gratuitous violence, thanks in no small part to the interconnected world we now live in, then in centuries past.  In my opinion, Hovey, on some level, should be aware of this, and certainly before proposing a tax of this nature.

By and large, violent entertainment has been around for awhile now.  When Indiana Jones shoots at people in Raiders of the Lost Ark, how is that different from when one shoots someone with a gun in Halo?  One is more interactive than the other, but beyond that, what is the difference?  Where is the “sin tax” on other violent media?  Why are video games suddenly the scapegoat and root cause (in Hovey’s mind) of violent behavior among people?  I simply don’t see the connections she see’s, and perhaps she could further clarify her statements to help a fool like me understand her position.

Honestly, I feel like I’m babbling at this point as I need to keep my anger in check, but I cannot imagine that Hovey’s proposed “Sin” tax would go anywhere.


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