Monday, June 25, 2007

Manhunt 2 and Gaming Links

Take-Two "suspended" Manhunt 2 last week in response to an AO (adults only) rating from the ESRB and an outright ban by the British Board of Film Classification and Entertainment Software Rating Board.

That just rolls off your tongue, doesn't it?

I think it's very instructive to listen to the plethora of industry people who are defending Take-Two and the game. That would be "plethora" as in "none."

Or, in a more accurate mathematical sense, "zero."

In other words, nobody cares that Take-Two made a game with such remarkably excessive violence that it received an AO rating. Publicity stunt, miscalculation, whatever--no one cares.

Seth Schiesel of the New York Times has a far more readable and thorough rendering of the controversy here. He also played the game for several hours, so he can (and does) comment intelligently on the game's content.

Reading Schiesel's article, I was reminded of something: remember how five years ago (or less), we all dismissed the writing that mainstream publications did about games? There was a good reason for that, though.

It was almost all crap.

That's not true today. Shiesel, N'Gai Croal (Newsweek), Dean Takahashi (Mercury News), and Chris Morris (CNN) are all knowledgeable about games and the business of games, and they're all excellent writers.

Speaking of N'Gai, he has an article explaining Bioware's decision to work with Sega on making a Sonic RPG. I think he explains Bioware's motivations entirely correctly, and I haven't seen his line of reasoning anywhere else. You can read the article here.

Tycho's Penny Arcade post is tremendously funny today (particularly the second paragraph, which is a full-on masterpiece), and you can read it here. If you don't get a post about Doritos, then look in the archives for the June 25 post.

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