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« Middle East: Rice resists immediate ceasefire at summit | Main | Dark Source: Public Trust and the Secret at the Heart of the New Voting Machines by Ben Rubin »

War and Video Games

War and Video Games


From Neural.it

In the controversial debate about the videogame role in social acceptance of violence, the military power avid interest in the field is not anymore a secret. Furthermore the mediatic videogame-like aesthetic debuted during the Gulf War in early nineties has become the norm, and pushes in every new conflict the bloodless screen-based interface of a real human mass murdering. Ed Halter wrote this documented book letting the reader navigate through the slim territories of the elegant game attack strategies' genesis and the invasive subtle marketing of the senseless murders and destructions' institutions.

It's an enlightened path carved on the thin line that separates refined smartness from (ir)repressible aggressiveness. The signals reported in the text are proving the definitive fusion between the real military and videogame war-based contents (the US Army recruitment game coding and the Kuma product marketing are amongst the most bright examples). To frame them many precious less-known scenarios were reported in the context, like the ones occurred in the obscure proto-web multiuser network named PLATO, or the operation Igloo White that implemented 20.000 advanced sensors in Vietnam during the U.S. war (soon hacked in various low-tech ways by the local population). Moreover a comprehensive selection of political digital art works on the theme is commented, scattered in different part of the book. In the end this is an estimable work, a milestone of research in videogame studies, that should be even more useful contributing to fill the lack of awareness in the current media-induced absence of distinction between wars appearing on the screen and wars taking place in reality

Originally from
ReBlogged by silvia on Jul 27, 2006 at 03:29 PM Posted by silvia on Jul 27, 2006 at 03:29 PM


i work in video games. unfortunately there will always be those that can't distinguish fact from fiction. everybody blames videogames, but war has been a 'theme' for entertainment ever since people could create 'entertainment'. we're fascinated by war because of the strain it puts in human survival (note: most action movies, horror movies, war movies, and the same for games are about "SURVIVAL"). Only fools can't tell the difference between what they see on screen and what there is in reality. This is probably not because of videogames, but because the media refuses to show the 'true' images of war and only shows the watered down pictures of soldiers. If the military can use military simulations to train soldiers and make a soldier less prone to dying (and more able to kill more enemy - not that I defend this stance, but what is a soldier there for) then so be it. If a game based on the military attracts young people into enlisting, well that's their own demise. The only problem with that might be that it is completely foolish to believe that war will be the same in a game than in real life, so you'll have a military with young fool recruits expecting war to be Halo 2.

Posted by: El Carrito at 01.08.2006 05:50 PM

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