Wednesday, August 22, 2007

"Killerspiele" Update (The "I sense the summer hole coming" Edition)

I almost thought we were over it. I really did. I thought the media and the politicians had finally moved over the whole "Killerspiele" issue. I also thought somebody had finally chained Prof. Pfeiffer to a wall in some god-forsaken dungeon ... but no, the issue comes back again, just like a zombie. But, unfortunate, you can't kill it with a shot gun to the head.

Yesterday I was watching another magazine on TV - I have to do something in the evening, after all. And there it was again, the "Killerspiel". I had almost missed it.

This time it was ZDF and this time it was a lot along the lines of "all those studies which don't find a relation between Killerspiele and violence are done by people who get paid by the computer games industry" and it made me want to either run amok - which I haven't ... yet - or puke - which I haven't either, I hate puking.

What really should make the TV-stations think, though (apart from the fact that the supposed 'hero' of the "Killerspiele" issue, Prof. Christian Pfeiffer, has very good reasons of his own to damn them ... and guess what? they're financial), is the fact that a culture council in Germany has stated, not too long ago, computer games should be treated like movies - and thus there should be money for the makers, just as with movies in Germany. Of course, neither the politicians nor the media can accept that - it would ruin their reputation to admit that they damned something a specialized council sees as 'cultural', especially in Germany where culture is appreciated above everything. The horror, the pure, mind-bending horror of it!

In addition I read on the net yesterday that CryTec, one of the few German software and games developers, has already announced they're going to move abroad if the new law (making every game with violent content basically illegal) gets passed. Considering that they employ over one hundred people in Germany alone, they're hardly a little company.

And besides creating ego-shooters, their engine has also been used to create new software for architects, because the 3D-engine is so great and allows to create such life-like 3D-worlds. That's very important for architects. In fact, during the last couple of years, CryTec was one of the few companies that prospered in Germany. And now, because the politicians don't know what they talk about, but want the votes of people who don't know anything about it either, they will probably leave.

Strangely enough, you only get this "my child ran amok because of computer games"-spiel from the so called 'public' TV-stations, although the private TV-stations usually thrive on such eye-watering stories about sex and violence ... or just violence in this case. They, having the majority of viewers in ages that play computer games, don't jump on this new trend. I like to think they know why...

I know this is mainly because the media is in what they usually call 'summer hole' when nothing of interest happens. This year we had a slight deprive because of all the cyclists of the Tour de France taking drugs to drive faster, but now it's got us. Where's Nessie anyway when you need that damn plesiosaur?

I predict that, when it goes on like this, in a few years nobody will vote any longer, because they just despise all those politicians who have basically called them "mad killers-in-waiting". Or maybe Pfeiffer's right (may God prevent that) and we'll all run amok and thus Germany will be devoid of life. Whatever happens first...

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