×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Too Soon For A Columbine Videogame?

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the touchy-subject dept.

319

neutralino writes "Rocky Mountain News has a story about a computer game based on the Columbine massacre. From the article: 'Called Super Columbine Massacre RPG, the game mixes cartoonish scenes with photographs of Harris and Klebold, pictures taken from newspapers and television stations and excerpts from their writings... [The game's creator] said he wanted to create something profoundly unique and confrontational that would promote a real dialogue on the subject of school shootings.'"

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

319 comments

Are you kidding??? (5, Informative)

DougLorenz (964249) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345036)

Well, I have a couple of things to say...

First of all, someone is going to bring it up eventually, so I might as well be helpful and give everyone the link to the website that has the actual game...

http://www.columbinegame.com/ [columbinegame.com]

By the way, it appears that the game was designed using a program called "RPG Maker 2000" [chello.at]

Hopefully their website charges them for bandwidth, and once they get Slashdotted the server hosting bill will bankrupt the authors...

Secondly, I think that most people would feel some concern about copycats, and being that I haven't played the game myself, I don't know whether the perspective in the game glorifies the actions of Harris and Klebold. If it does, this can be pretty dangerous for some kids... Some of the comments in the news story tend to suggest that they are glorifying the murders. For example, the article stated that when someone is killed in the game, a dialogue box pops up stating "Another victory for the Trench Coat Mafia".

I would be against any effort to impose government censorship on this kind of thing, but the authors should have really thought about whether this was a good idea.

If you are going to download this game, you may want to do it soon. The article indicated that some of the content within the game may be in violation of a copyright.

Re:Are you kidding??? (1)

giorgiofr (887762) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345110)

OK, this game is flamefest material. It will put people's belief in Free Speech to test.

Re:Are you kidding??? (4, Insightful)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345202)

"It will put people's belief in Free Speech to test."
Should the game be banned?
No.
Should anybody buy it?
No.
Should every living person on the face of the earth tell the company that published this game that this is a bad idea!
Yes.

Freedom of speech means you can have the right to say anything and not go to jail.
It doesn't mean that every person on the planet doesn't have the right to hate your guts for saying it.

Re:Are you kidding??? (0, Flamebait)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345282)

Should the game be banned? No.

Unfortunately, my magic sky diety demands I throw myself into righteous outrage each time His invulnerable being is besmirched by sin.

Re:Are you kidding??? (2, Interesting)

OS24Ever (245667) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345126)

Other than WW 2 simulations I really don't like the idea of making a game based off of a real tragedy. That'd be like creating a '911 simulator' where you try and fly 757s into the world trade center. It's just stupid, and it riles up the anti-gaming crowd rather quickly

Re:Are you kidding??? (1)

steveo777 (183629) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345244)

I really don't want to start a flame war here, but it needs to be said.

As pertains to your example of the 911 game, do you mean in the same way you can take GTAIII SA and crash planes into buildings or people, or go into any crowd and level them with a gun because it's fun? I'm all for making the author of this game realize that it will never be time to remember Columbine or any other shooting with some sort of game. I also understand that GTA doesn't simulate particular situations, but the ides can be the same...

I do believe that the WWII and other war simulators are a good way to remember the wars because, as it should, the games tend to glorify the heroes. I'm not sure I can think of a WWII or other war game where you play the definative "bad guys." I could, however, easily be wrong.

Re:Are you kidding??? (1, Flamebait)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345266)

But where do you draw the line? WW2 is ok, so what about Korea? Vietnam? Iraq in the early 90s? Iraq now?

This question is the same one that came up when the recent 9/11 movie was released. How soon is too soon?

(I'm presuming that older wars you have no issue with; the Civil War has been featured in more than a few games.)

The game is Windows-only, or I'd have tried it and been able to give a more educated position.

Re:Are you kidding??? (1)

OS24Ever (245667) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345472)

After I hit the submit button I thought 'doh!' I had Battle of Britain on the brain and how interesting a game that was. I did not mean to draw the line in 1941 - 1943 but to say War Games are interesting, and don't seem to exploit the situation near as much as a 'Flight 98' or 'Massacre at Columbine' type of game.

I'd love to see a 'Duck Hunt' type game where you pop terrorists in the head when they pop up. We can call it Whac-A-Terrorist or whatever. Personally in games where I get the most uncomfortable is when you are a terrorist. Command and Conquer generals was one of thsoe. I refused to play the arab line because it was too close to 2001 for me and it goobed me out cranking out suicide bombers. BF2 has gotten better but playing the MEC side still bothers me some times.

Would I want games like this to stop being made? no, I guess not. But at the same time things like Columbine and 9/11/01 and the like are too big of a hot button and too close to the heart of too many vocal people to make a game out of. I mean the recent BF2 flap about the 'Terrorist Recruiting Video' [yahoo.com] fan made video [digg.com] shows how sensative an issue it is these days.

Re:Are you kidding??? (2, Insightful)

grub (11606) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345416)


Other than WW 2 simulations I really don't like the idea of making a game based off of a real tragedy.

WW2 games are OK? I'll start work on SimAuschwitz(tm) tonight!

Re:Are you kidding??? (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345286)

So everyone should download the game, delete it, download again, repeat until bankrupt?
Nasty, but some how tempting.

Re:Are you kidding??? (1)

Walt Dismal (534799) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345310)

Outside of being tasteless to the point of obscenity, the big question is, will it be ready for PS3 in time for the fall rollout? Sony executives might as well add yet another disaster to high pricing, Blu-Ray, and slow-to-market. Mass murder would fit right in.

Re:Are you kidding??? (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345339)

How is this worse than BF2 etc based on conflict in the Middle East? Or war films like Pearl Harbour, Saving Private Ryan etc?

Re:Are you kidding??? (2, Insightful)

Castar (67188) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345486)

This is interesting, particularly the "too soon" idea. If it's wrong to talk about something horrible, then it's wrong to talk about it at any time, surely?

But World War II killed a lot more people than Columbine. And there are WWII games falling out of every tree lately. No one is talking about how horrible it is to glorify all that violence (well, a few people, but they're in the minority). Why is Columbine more offensive? Is it really just a matter of time?

Personally, I have no problems with this game. I won't play it, but it's no more offensive than Command and Conquer, or Counterstrike.

Dunno about you... (1)

llamalicious (448215) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345058)

But never seems soon enough for a game about Columbine.

How, exactly, is a video game about it going to do anything other than glorify the massacre?

Re:Dunno about you... (1)

SCaryX (749992) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345211)

I completely agree. While I believe that the creator is entitled to create any game he wants, if he truly wanted to create a commentary on school violence, I think he would want to create more of an RPG. Let's call it "School Counselor." In this "game" geared towards educators and students you would learn how to spot trouble signs and learn necessary steps to intervene before violence occurs in schools.

All the creator of this game is doing is glorifying something that need never be glorified. What's next, a game about re-enacting the Holocaust because, you know, it would create conversation?! Outrageous.

Re:Dunno about you... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345369)

How is it different than a game that glorifies war? Or assisinations?

Many more killings are dipicted in the standard FPS than the number that were killed in Colombine. Do you have a problem with those FPS's?

That's tasteless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345068)

I like it.

The answer to both questions is the same. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Crowhead (577505) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345071)

Is it too soon for a Haulocaust video game? Seriously, it would promote dialogue and what-not...

Re:The answer to both questions is the same. (4, Interesting)

Surt (22457) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345278)

Is it too soon for a holocaust movie (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0108052/), or cartoon book (http://www3.iath.virginia.edu/holocaust/spiegelma n.html)?

Just because video games as an entertainment/art form are in their infancy doesn't mean they can't grow up and portray the same subjects that the more established arts do.

Re:The answer to both questions is the same. (2, Insightful)

iogan (943605) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345470)

Is it too soon for a Haulocaust video game? Seriously, it would promote dialogue and what-not...

Well let's see, have we had any games about vietnam? Three million dead compares pretty well with six million as far as I'm concerned. I guess I'm burning karma like it's going out of style here, but this hypocrisy has sort of got me going a little.

Never is too soon. (4, Insightful)

Kaessa (924806) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345073)

I have NO idea what these people were thinking. Mass murder of children is NOT entertainment. Sheesh.

Re:Never is too soon. (1, Insightful)

iogan (943605) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345305)

I have NO idea what these people were thinking. Mass murder of children is NOT entertainment. Sheesh.

So tell me, would you play a game based on the Vietnam war? How about Iraq war? Or did you mean "Mass murder of american children"?

Yeah, flamebait, I know.. but seriously, think about it.

Re:Never is too soon. (2, Insightful)

Sylver Dragon (445237) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345367)

So there is no difference, in your mind, between two kids killing their classmates in a school and a declared war?

Re:Never is too soon. (2, Insightful)

iogan (943605) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345409)

So there is no difference, in your mind, between two kids killing their classmates in a school and a declared war?

First of all, I'll think you'll find the US was not officially at war with anybody, it was all "advisors to the south vietnam government etc". Secondly, killing kids is killing kids, doesn't matter if it's in a war or not. And last but not least, 3 million people is a lot more than 20 odd people in a school. Columbine sucked, but let's try to keep things in perspective, ok?

Re:Never is too soon. (1)

bunions (970377) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345474)

Wow, I wasn't aware there was a videogame based on the Vietnam war where you killed Vietnamese children. Man, this internet is all screwy.

Re:Never is too soon. (1)

Mistshadow2k4 (748958) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345451)

There's a difference between combat in war than a mass killing spree against unarmed people (kids or adults).

Re:Never is too soon. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345456)

Well duh, it's only fun to kill them if they are over 18!

(Someone should make a mod that changes them all to adults. Now THAT is my type of game.)

Two words (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345075)

Completely tasteless.

I smell BS (5, Insightful)

faloi (738831) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345083)

he wanted to create something profoundly unique and confrontational that would promote a real dialogue on the subject of school shootings.

I think what he wanted to do was generate some free promotion for himself, and he figured that school shootings would be a great way to get people to take a look at him. Instant noteriety.

Yes, it is too soon, but this is America (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345085)

My question is, when will I be able to buy a Flight 93 game, and choose to either play as the terrorists, the cabin crew, or the passengers?

And will they let us use blankets? Very useful on planes.

But, yes, the whole Columbine game concept is excessively sick and twisted, and I'm sure they'll sell lots of copies.

Does a Columbine game EVER need created? (1)

Rifter13 (773076) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345091)

I think the real question, is does the game EVER need to be made, not if it is too soon. There are some people that just do not function well, in society.

Jack? Jack Thompson? You there? (1)

buysse (5473) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345096)

I will give my personal guarantee that Jack will be all over this shit.

Re:Jack? Jack Thompson? You there? (1)

MrChom (609572) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345137)

And just for once I would actually support Jack Thompson.

This is the sort of stuff that givers all gamers who quite like the way things are right now some serious headaches over what could become of their hobby.

Re:Jack? Jack Thompson? You there? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345243)

Supporting someone who is PURE FUCKING EVIL on the one occasion upon which you happen to agree with them is self-defeating, and very very stupid. You have all the moral backbone of a jellyfish that sells crack cocaine to elementary school children.

Games are either a legitimate artform capable of addressing serious issues in our society, or they aren't. You can't have it both ways. If you think they are, then being willing to agree with someone who tried to ban this game makes you a hypocrite. If you think they aren't, then you're just an idiot. Either way, you're an ass.

Re:Jack? Jack Thompson? You there? (1)

SoCalChris (573049) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345267)

Yeah, it's in extremely poor taste, but they do have every right to make it.

I for one, wouldn't support Jack Thompson, even on this.

Re:Jack? Jack Thompson? You there? (1)

BadMrMojo (767184) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345169)

<hat class="tinFoil">Who else would possibly have given them funding to make it?</hat>

Profound? (1)

hotarugari (525375) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345102)

I would say the only thing profound is the creator's willingness to make a game for which he will either get sued for or possibly threatened/killed himself for making.

What's this? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345104)

[The game's creator] said he wanted to create something profoundly unique and confrontational that would promote a real dialogue on the subject of school shootings.'"

Michael Moore does video games now?

it wil always be 'too soon' (1)

JeanBaptiste (537955) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345108)

Remember last year when the JFK reloaded [pcworld.com] game was released? There was plenty of hubub about that, and in that case the actual event happened 50 years ago.

Really. What if someone made a game about the holocaust (and you play for the 'bad' team)? It's more than a matter of just how much time has passed, I'd say...

Is it too soon for these games? (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345112)

Jew Roundup? An RTS where you are a Nazi trying to gather up those pesky jews and get them to extermination camps before being over run?

Master. You are running a plantation before in the old south. You must get as much work out of your slaves and through selective breeding improve the quality of your stock?

The answer is YES it is too soon!!!!
I think right after our sun goes red giant would be a just about enough time.

Actually... (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345187)

In Railroad Tycoon II, one of the scenarios is playing as Mao Zedong in 1949, and using the railroads to "revitalize China". Considering Mao knowingly killed more people than Hitler, that's at least as bad. Yet no outcry. Probably because the game sucked and glorified socialism to begin with.

Not about "soon" (1)

spun (1352) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345364)

It's not "too soon," this isn't about the amount of time that has passed. "Too soon" implies there will be a day when this is acceptable. This (and the other fictional games you speculate about) are just plain tasteless, regardless of the amount of time that has passed.

For example, even though it's been 2000 years, and I'm not a Christian, I would find a "Crucify Jesus" game tasteless.

Re:Not about "soon" (1)

Rude Turnip (49495) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345483)

"For example, even though it's been 2000 years, and I'm not a Christian, I would find a "Crucify Jesus" game tasteless."

That would work out pretty well on either the DS or Wii. Pencils down.

Re:Is it too soon for these games? (1)

minus_273 (174041) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345424)

"Jew Roundup? An RTS where you are a Nazi trying to gather up those pesky jews and get them to extermination camps before being over run?"


While you may be joking. I think this game would go over well with muslims in the middle east, particualrly Iran [bbc.co.uk] . Even here in the western hemisphere, there are countries [wiesenthal.com] where this would be quite popular. I'd be very surprised if it hasnt been made yet.

"Master. You are running a plantation before in the old south. You must get as much work out of your slaves and through selective breeding improve the quality of your stock?"


The second game does exist and was even used in some schools in the US in the mid 90s to teach history (it also included a mini game if shipping slaves) until it was removed.

Re:Is it too soon for these games? (2, Interesting)

Hannah E. Davis (870669) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345443)

I actually wouldn't mind seeing games like that. Simply telling people that racism is bad isn't nearly as effective as showing them why it's bad. I'm not talking about making a game where Nazis and slavers are genericly evil and cackle madly as they go about their (no doubt nefarious) business, I'm talking about something where they're just people doing what they believe is right... and ignoring the suffering around them that is obvious to the player of the game.

If we're going to address painful issues, we need to actually address them, not gloss over them, not ignore them, and certainly not refuse to touch them because they're still to "sensitive."

Too soon? (3, Insightful)

EggyToast (858951) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345129)

This is just someone cashing in on a recent event in a rather crude way, in an attempt to "address school shootings." You need to address things that happen often and repeatedly, such as a drug or crime problem. You can't address something that rarely happens; it's like addressing "shark attacks" or "mountain lion maulings."

It's in the same boat as that "suicide bomber" flash game and the JFK game. The only thing that's interesting about any of these things is that the internet allows most anyone to create something and publish it. That's not a function of the games, but the ability for the creator to distribute. It's no different from someone's manifesto making it online, compared to the earlier method of sitting in a shoebox under the bed.

Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345130)

What about a Dahmer video game? Or how about you can pilot the plane into the WTC? Or WW2 game where you drop the bomb on Japan?

Shit man, some things you just don't do. Some things aren't fixed with time.

Re:Well... Actually (1)

g0bshiTe (596213) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345441)

The latter two you can do now, FS2004 pre WTC, still has the twin towers. Most any Combat FS allows for bombing runs. I have participated in an online event where over 100 sim pilots flew a mock Pearl Harbor attack, in which some survivors took part, held on the anniversary it was intented to honor those who fought and died on both sides.

The meaning is what matters, and I think this guy has about as much meaning in releasing this game as does the US honoring it's foreign [SIC] policy.

What really gets me are those "tinfoil hat types" who still swear no planes hit the buildings.

too soon why? (1)

TLouden (677335) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345134)

because you can't sell enough titles to make it profitable? yeah
because you'll get more negative press than possitive? maybe
because you'll get the story wrong? you'll do no better in 10 years

March out the anti-gunners .. (-1, Offtopic)

Entropy (6967) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345141)

Here is my pre-emptive debate-strike to all who will in this thread say "limit the freedom of people to own guns":

The individual right to keep and bear arms as embodied in the second amendment is as vital to our freedoms as the rights to freedom of thought and speech as embodied in the first amendment.

They cover each others "back", and if you attack one you will end up attacking both.

Re:March out the anti-gunners .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345395)

the 1st amendment exists independently of the 2nd and you can look at other similar laws in western countries to prove this point. for the record, i support both amendments.

Re:March out the anti-gunners .. (1)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345399)


They cover each others "back", and if you attack one you will end up attacking both.

So, you're saying that in the game Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold are metaphors for the First and Second Amendments?

Yeah, but will it have a hack... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345142)

...so that you can rape and torture eight year old girls in it? I mean, if you want to start a dialog about the dispicable acts performed by antisocial psychopaths, you really ought to get as much "discussion stimulating content" into it as possible. Perhaps a pre-level that involves power lawncare equipment and juvenile domestic animals would be a good addition as well (or, at the least, a FMV intro).

and the /. quote of the day is (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345147)

Murder is contrary to the laws of man and God. -- M-5 Computer, "The Ultimate Computer", stardate 4731.3

No need (1)

psykocrime (61037) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345150)

I don't personally think there will ever be a time when it's "right" to make such a game.

But, free speech rights trump my personal sense of morality, dignity, whatever; so if they
want to make it, more power to 'em. I won't be buying it though, and I hope nobody else
does either.

He also has no balls (2, Insightful)

Johnny5000 (451029) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345153)

If the designer came out and said "I just thought it would be cool to shoot a bunch of kids at school" or "I just wanted to be famous and here's an easy way to do it" I'd respect that more than claiming it's only to promote dialogue.
That's horseshit, and if that's what he claims, then he's got no sack.

Columbine Victim Played It (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345188)

Gaming site Kotaku "spoke" with Richard Castaldo, who was paralyzed from the chest down from the attack on Columbine, after he played the game in question. Link for the article [kotaku.com] .

The kotaku article will give you way more insight than any MSM report on the game (most of which won't even bother to d/l the thing).

I'm willing to bet that... (1)

Al Oser (950774) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345197)

90% of the naysayers here either have or will download the game and play it. ;)

To throw my 2 cents in, I don't think it's appropriate to make a game about a specific incident such as Columbine. Maybe it's splitting hairs, but I think it would have the same impact with or without the name Columbine attached to it.

Which is, very little.

It seems to me that "to create dialogue" is a very thin cover. I struggle to see what kind of productive dialogue that hasn't already been beaten to death repeatedly can come out of this game.

Re:I'm willing to bet that... (1)

Kandenshi (832555) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345272)

Well, I expect some of they naysayers will download it yeah. Wasn't there talk earlier in the thread about slashdotting them? Running up a big bill from whoever is hosting this for them?

The game is a decent size(23 megs), so downloading it serves the purposes of at least some of the naysayers, even/especially if they just delete it as soon as it finishes downloading.

Some of the other naysayers might want to avoid it entirely, to not inflate his download counter(like people are always talking about happening with each new version of Firefox, etc...)

Always too soon (1)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345205)

It's always too soon and never long enough for a game like this. What's next? Flight Sim 9/11 ?

What in the hell is wrong with people?

BTW -- Oddly appropriate slashdot fortune from the bottom of the page:

Murder is contrary to the laws of man and God. -- M-5 Computer, "The Ultimate Computer", stardate 4731.3

Re:Always too soon (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345270)

Flight Sim 9/11 was out before 9/11. It's called microsoft flight simulator and it will let you crash a jumbo jet into several large buildings. In fact it has whole new packs of terrain that you can purchase in order to find new buildings to run into.

Re:Always too soon (1)

0racle (667029) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345331)

Did you actually think it wouldn't happen? The first batch of movies are on their way.

This idea is as lame as FDR's legs.

Time to play the Devil's Advocate (5, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345206)

Since each and every one of the comments posted as of this moment is against the idea, I thought that someone should defend the author. At the moment, that someone is me.

First of all, please put aside the idea that there is such thing as a universal sense of taste that this guy is violating. There is no such thing. For example someone might tell you that a joke about rape is never funny, while George Carlin has a joke he provides as a counterexample that gets good laughs: "I'll prove to you that rape is funny. Picture porky pig raping elmer fudd. Why do you think they call him porky?"

By the same token, I remember laughing about the joke about NASA meaning "need another seven astronauts". I was a kid at the time, and I know that doesn't necessarily prove anything because kids lack refinement, but I guess what I'm saying is that refinement is not necessarily a virtue.

Human often deal with difficult situations with humor. Have you ever been in such dire straits (whether physically or emotionally) that it made you laugh, albeit hysterically? Laughter can be a coping mechanism. Of course, from the screen shots, it doesn't appear that they were shooting for humor (pardon the pun, or not. It was unintentional.

The claim is that this game was intended to provoke thought and dialogue. The screenshots seem to back that up, although my primary thought was wondering if the author really believed that access to guns was the problem, since if you believe that, you're a bozo. Any asshole can steal a gun, and there are other weapons available... But let's look at this story. Even without people playing the game, the very issue is causing serious dialogue. This comment is proof.

Is it acceptable to write a book or make a movie about the events of Columbine, discussing the ramifications? If so, then making a video game is every bit as legitimate. It's just another kind of artwork.

Those of you who are not bothered by books and movies about it existing, yet are still claiming that the video game is inappropriate, should go drive off a cliff with any progeny of yours in the vehicle at the same time. You'll do the rest of us a favor by helping to clean the gene pool.

Re:Time to play the Devil's Advocate (0, Troll)

StonyUK (173886) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345403)

I hope you take the same attitude after somebody publishes a game where the central theme is the re-enactment of your mother's rape and your sister's death by a drunken driver.

It's just art after all.

Re:Time to play the Devil's Advocate (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345457)

I would be no more upset by such a game than I would be by the news report and newspaper articles on the same subject, which would be sensationalistic and more concerned with selling media than telling the truth or performing a public service. This guy is giving away his work for free, so he may be attempting to gain notoriety through this, but at least he's not trying to make money.

Also, I might be upset, but it wouldn't change the fact that such expression is protected by the first amendment to the constitution of the nation in which I live, and that it would be more wrong to prohibit such expression than to express yourself in that way.

Also, I don't have a sister. Recreation games should be accurate :P

Re:Time to play the Devil's Advocate (1)

Pendersempai (625351) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345438)

Those of you who are not bothered by books and movies about it existing, yet are still claiming that the video game is inappropriate, should go drive off a cliff with any progeny of yours in the vehicle at the same time. You'll do the rest of us a favor by helping to clean the gene pool.

Jeez. That's a little extreme.

I think there is a legitimate distinction between video games and books/movies. Books and movies can be documentary or nonfiction in nature, whose purpose is to educate instead of entertain. Video games -- except for the ugly duckling "edutainment" genre -- exist purely to entertain.

It's the fact that people are deriving entertainment from such a tragedy so soon afterwards that fuels the criticism, I think, not that video games specifically are the medium. You'd see the same anger directed at a "Rambo: Columbine" movie. A lot of people were pretty upset about this latest 9/11 movie, for example, for probably the same reason.

Or at least that's a legitimate justification for the criticism. It may be that people associate video games with the glorification of violence, which probably isn't as legitimate a justification without looking at the specifics of the video game.

See what a survivor says about the game. (2, Interesting)

the_demiurge (26115) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345214)

You can read the full interview [kotaku.com] with someone who asurvived that day at kotaku. His responses are quite interesting, and he says he has mixed feelings about the game.

I don't think the idea behind the game was to trivialize the shootings, but to comment on them. In other words, it's not trying to be entertainment, it's trying to be art.

Too Soon? (1)

SirStanley (95545) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345216)

Are you nuts? "Too Soon" ???? The headline implies that there will actually be a time when a game about Columbine would be appropriate.

Schmucks.

it's a tragedy... (1)

Joe the Lesser (533425) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345225)

I mean, come on. Has there ever been a video game made after a tragedy?

'Can you bomb Hiroshima and end the war?'

That's not fun unless you're sick.

Re:it's a tragedy... (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345411)

'Can you bomb Hiroshima and end the war?' That's not fun unless you're sick.

Or unless you believe, as many do, that it was the only way to end the war.

I'm not saying I believe that (I don't really know enough to form an educated opinion on this issue, so I don't believe anything in particular, but do accept that it's possible for it to be true, or not) but many people do. Your opinion is not universal. Neither is anyone else's.

Re:it's a tragedy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345459)

That's not fun unless you're sick.

Yeah, clearly we should not allow the sick to have any harmless fun at all. We should take away their games and toys, and for added measure we can punch them a few times, take away their lunch money and call them names.

The world will be a much better place once the sickos have been properly antagonized!

not a good way to start a discussion (1)

epaulson (7983) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345227)

Anyone who wanted to have a serious school shooting discussion would have found a better way to start the discussion than this.

Also, the headline. "Too soon for a Columbine videogame?" As though it will someday be something we can joke about?

Of course it's too soon! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345233)

I mean, it's only been 7 years! There have only been 1.75 new generations of high-school kids in that time and only a half-dozen to a dozen more huge school shootings! We're forgetting how our children need to be saved from themselves!

If this video game is released, and (G-d forbid) kids play it, they might just catch Independent Thinking Syndrome and begin to try and understand the reasons behind Columbine.

Oy gevalt, hand me a download link already.

NORTH HOLLYWOOD SHOOTOUT (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345253)

Now that would make a good game

Now the lazy idiots cry what about the children (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345261)

"The children will copy this game!"
"The children will think this behavior is acceptable!"
"The children will be numb to this sort of behavior and attitude!"
"Insert more unrelated bullshit excuses for lazy horrible parents."

Let the game come out, let it air the dirty laundry and serious underlying problems that give way to youth violence. Hiding and pretending it never happened or could never happen again will only yeild history repeating itself.

In regards to the children, where are the parents? What did the parents teach them? What did the parents instill in them? What do the parents do NOW with them? Start blaming who is responsible for the problem of kids out of control, prone to violence and hate, and lacking any tools and means of dealing with today's issues and problems for them. It is not any movie, it is not any video game, it is not the Internet. It is the P A R E N T S and their total failure, hold them accountable as they and they alone are the ONLY ones responsible for what they raised and how they raised it.

No (1)

SimDarth (975287) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345269)

This "game" should not happen. End of story. I like the examples given by other readers here of other things people should NOT make games about. It's true that you could argue that a lot of games that recreate historic events could be considered offensive to some, but some things are just offensive to everyone. Some things are just simply wrong without blaming backlash on political correctness or some other made-up crutch of the politcos. I just don't want to see Jack Thompson, Hillary Clinton, Joe Lieberman or Tipper Gore waving this game in my face as an example of the way gaming is corrupting our youth.

same story as always (1)

42Penguins (861511) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345275)

No matter how [un]violent or [un]sexual you make a game, there will still be the same number of idiots out there who think it'd be cool to do what's in the game.
Also, there will be the same idiots no matter how much time has passed.

People who are disgusted by the idea of a game about mass murder probably won't buy it! ...Along with Halo, Ghost Recon, C&C Generals, or any other game where the point is to kill.
People who are alright with it will buy it, obviously.

Wouldn't it be nice if some kid who wanted to shoot up his school wasted all his time on this game, instead of doing it in real life?

No (1)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345291)

But then, Jack + Hillary + Joe_L = 1st Amendment Annihilation
so I don't think it's a good idea to create a lot of publicity for it when there's a real possibility for them to ban (or restrict to require background check) "insensitive", "hate", or "violent" games.

Still, I wouldn't play it. Mainly because it's an RPG, and I find them boring. An FPS, maybe, but I don't see how could they make it long enough to be interesting. Maybe create some alternative reality where they go on a worldwide rampage tour...

Assassin (2, Interesting)

Nightspirit (846159) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345297)

It would never be made, but I would like an current, realistic political assassin game. First, let me make it perfectly clear that I have no intentions of killing or hurting anyone. But it would be sweet to (in a game) choose a goverment you work under (or free-lance) and have a choice of current government officials under opposing goverments that are your targets. You could go over and start grass roots movements or start a coup, or eventually sniper (or use various other methods) your target. Yearly you could download updates to make the government official list from multiple countries current.

Maybe too soon.. (1)

neumayr (819083) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345359)

But a lot of posts seem to claim it can't be done at all. But there are tons of games about some kind of tragedy, the first that come to mind are games about:

  • old style imperialism (slave trade etc.)
  • WW2
  • Vietnam

So, most likely there'll be a games about Colombine. And not only this relatively tame RPG, but also an FPS. And, given time, probably an 911 flightsim.

TFA quote says it all: (1)

idontgno (624372) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345382)

He said he wanted to create something profoundly unique and confrontational that would "promote a real dialogue on the subject of school shootings."

In other words, he's just a troll. We'd recognize him instantly if he posted here. (And mod his losing butt into the ground.)

Too bad internet gaming doesn't have /. moderation.

Maybe a good thing (1)

LinuxRulz (678500) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345420)

There are many movies showing the horror of war. Maybe a videogame to denounce such a tragedy and to disgust people would be good. Make something in the lines of Manhunt [rockstargames.com] , which will make people sick of violence and it may not be all bad.

Hookers (2, Insightful)

moberry (756963) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345421)

I find it pretty entertaining to get your d**k sucked to improve your health then cap the bitch in the head afterwards (Grand theft auto) but this.... sick, i mean sick.

Not a new idea (1)

nosredna (672587) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345423)

JFK Reloaded, anyone?

As tasteless as this really is (I for one wouldn't buy it), there's nothing to stop them from making it. Of course, there's always somebody looking to make a profit off of tragedy... just take a look at the documentary about the 9/11 Pennsylvania plane that's coming out.

Game is thoughtful and provocative (1)

jcruelty (602954) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345427)

I posted about this game elsewhere [criticalbeatdowns.com] ... in a nutshell, I think those who take time to play the game will be surprised at how nuanced it is. It really makes you think about the motivations behind the killings and the bullying atmosphere at Columbine, and what it is that pushed those kids over the edge when most kids who get bullied just get past it.

Horrifying! (1)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345430)

I find it totally shocking that the game author would use copyrighted images without seeking proper permission. Doesn't anyone take copyright seriously anymore?

(how to miss the point, #47)

This game was made years ago (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345449)

Tom Fulp's "Pico's school" was considered pretty ground breaking back in the early days of Flash animation http://www.newgrounds.com/pico/pico.html [newgrounds.com]

It is certainly inspired by Columbine.

Tom himself says:

1999 also saw the introduction of Pico's School, hailed by many as the pinnacle of Flash 3 "programming". I say that in quotes because Flash 3 didn't offer much in terms of programming - it didn't even support variables. I came up with a very complex work-around for tracking events and data, making Pico the most advanced Flash 3 game I am aware of.

It's very entertaining!

RTFA before you rant about it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15345465)

I'm not pro violence, but I will admit to playing the GTA games and I did enjoy them. That doesn't mean I'm going to repeat those actions in real life. What happens if we change the name and make it another sequel to GTA? GTA: Colorado City. Then it would be OK (ignoring the poor game play and graphics - no offense to the author)?

He presented a topic of debate in an artistic way. Had he drawn a painting depicting the horrible events then people would praise him. But he's not a painter - so he did his painting on the computer. If you read his forums you'd find out that victims of this horrible event are not opposed to it. And if you read his forums then you would find plenty of discussion about the event. So it achieves what he was trying to do - get people to talk.

As an ancient slashdot proverb goes: "RTFA before you rant" :)

one question! (1)

Nesetril (969734) | more than 7 years ago | (#15345488)

is this game moddable? I would like to see the issue compounded by 3rd party skin and blood mods, please.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...