Thursday, June 21, 2007

The Manhunt 2 mess

A bit aside from my planned entry today (the Angels/Demons extract will come next week, don’t worry) – really just wanted to focus on the whole Manhunt 2 ban issue/debate that's managed to span across the mainstream press this week.

I've written a column over at Wii Chat regarding it:

'I didn’t want to write about this.

But the topic seems to have blown up to epic proportions, and it would seem a little churlish to avoid it.

So, the Manhunt 2 ban. Good lord, what an unholy mess. While I've seen games come and go, hit over the head with the 'ban-stick' across numerous territories and generations, I can't remember a time where things have turned into a total landslide of chaos as we've witnessed with Rockstar's super violent action thriller.

For those who've been sleeping soundly under a very large rock the past week, let's quickly review what happened. First, Manhunt 2 gets banned in the U.K for both Wii and PlayStation2 (bizarrely, no mention was made of the PlayStation Portable version).

The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) rejected the game for release after going through its content and deciding it crossed a moral line via its "unremitting bleakness and callousness of tone in an overall game context which constantly encourages visceral killing with exceptionally little alleviation or distancing". In other words, it showed 'immoral behaviour' that, while fitting within the game's story and established tone, was relentless and more than likely beyond what the medium has asked a player to actively participate in before. True to the first Manhunt, then, it would seem…'

You can read the rest here:


Anonymous said...

Funny I read about this in the paper today and thought must ask Corey what he thinks.Better not publish here what my thoughts are but I'm sure you have a good idea.As long as it keeps you working!

Unknown said...

To be honest, I was just fairly fed up about the subject having been exposed to it for the past 2-3 days, and was ready to write about something else ;)

My issue with the mainstream press' coverage on Manhunt 2 (and games in general) is that it's often misinformed. BADLY misinformed, and worse, knowingly so. The murder of a school kid that the first Manhunt game is associated with is one of those stories where the facts were totally ignored for sensationalism – the killer didn’t own a copy of the game, the *victim* did (and so the game has absolutely nothing to do with the murder at all).

Perhaps most bafflingly, Manhunt 2 is being linked to the other game which had the James "Jamie" Bulger image, of which the two are totally seperate cases and not at all associated.

But each newspaper keeps grinding out the same fallacious stuff to sell and push their agenda, and perception turns to reality; Cultivation Theory pretty much in full force. Certainly not the first time the newspapers got something totally wrong, though ;) xx