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How do you feel about a 14 yr. old getting 'M-rated' video games?


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RandEsMom December 12, 2008


My son wants a WWII video game. He has the first version which was rated T. The new one out is rated M and I'm not happy. He claims it's "just for more violence", but I'm not so sure...the soldiers swear during the playing of the game. My son is a mature 14 year old. I tend to be a follower of rules; if it says rated for not under 17, then I usually wouldn't even consider getting it for him. My husband doesn't agree. He says I have to let him grow up sometime. Does anyone know about the World At War games?

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blacklion December 15, 2008


I'm an avid gamer. My wife (and IMO most women in general) hate video games. So we are in a constant war over your now 6 yr old who also wants to play video games all the time. In hindsight, I do regret letting him play video games over the past couple of years because now HE HOGS the playstation all the time. I can't even get an hour on the thing. That is not the worst of it though. Occasionally he will tell me that killing/shooting/destroying something will be an easy way to fix a problem. (Me: "That bird singing outside this morning woke me up early." Him: "You could get a gun and just shoot it like in the video game.") So now I'm much more careful which games he sees and plays.

But anyways, back to your question. Yes, there are a lot of violent video games out there. I would use the same standard that you use for other types of media and entertainment. If you wouldn't let him listen to a song that glorified the same thing or watch a movie about it, then saying 'no' to a video game would be the correct course. Having said that, if you really don't like the current level of how much violence he is already exposed to in the media and want to cut back, starting with video games, then you should by all means do so. But let him know what you are doing. You won't have a shred of cred to stand on if you just say that it is too violent. Both hubby and junior will be like, "Well, the incredible Hulk movie was ...". You get the point. You have to say that you want to limit the amount of violence that he is expose to so you are saying no to the game. He may want to negotiate and give up some movies or TV shows to play the game instead and well, that is your call.

While hubby may be correct that you have to let him 'grow up' sometime, I've never heard anyone kick their 14 yr old out of the house for being 'grown'. He still has a few more years before he needs to worry about that. Let hubby know that you really, want him to be exposed to less violence. I'm sure he will get behind you and listen.

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hockeymum December 15, 2008


vacked-
These games do not glorify war. In fact they show how miserable it can be. If people would learn more about history perhaps we could for once not repeat it over and over.
Would you hide teaching the holocaust to a 14 year old too? In fact in my opinion its the perfect age. People and kids are so naieve these days. I remember a great episode of 20/20 years ago when Speilberg released "Schindlers List" to a group of LA high school students. He was in disbelief as the students started laughing at scenes and totally blew off the film. He was so upset that he had all the school come back and he had to explain the whole movie and why it is important, how this could happen again and the responsibilty of people not to ignore the realities of evil in the world. Pretending and ignoring the fact that we don't live in a perfect world leads to complacency. The students were moved to tears after when they interviewed them. Speilberg then went on later to provide the orignal idea and concepts for the MEDAL OF HONOR francise. For the sake of perserving the stories of our soldiers and education so that this may not happen again.
I would rather have my child playing a game where they are learning something like this game than for say for example Club Penguin. (i've gotten sick of that "great" Children's game with all the preteen hook ups on there) Yes I watch over my childrens shoulders like hawks online and gaming and I was more shocked on the behaviour on there than by them sitting beside me playing Call of Duty. But I am a different breed of parent I guess. I am very knowledgable on WW2 history and can rifle off a history lesson on any battle in the game.
As I said before if one isn't sure asking an opinion is fine but the only sure way is too try something or read or watch it for yourself before making a judgment when it comes to media for your child.

"Would you let your 14yr go to war?" to answer that of course not. But they have no aspirations to join either just because we play the game. I guess they should never play a mario cart racing either as I don't want them to speed later on....

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blacklion December 15, 2008


Hockeymum-

While I don't equate playing a video game to being equal to send my child off to war, I do believe that our country has fallen behind on the standard of helping children to maintain their innocence. In your example about the high school students and Schindler's list, the students you talked about were not naive. I would wager that many of them had been exposed to violence through movies and music over the course of many years. Laughing and joking about what happened in those movies is the product of being desensitized to it, not naivete. I never really thought much about how seeing violence in movies can affect us until I was watching a new release from Blockbuster when my daughter was an infant. She was still small enough to be bre astfed. I didn't think she was even aware of what was happening around her most of the time. Anyway, we were watching a movie that had a scene where one person was killed by another with a knife. There was no loud gunshot to startle her. But I certainly could see her reaction when they got their throat cut. At first it made me think about how it was nothing (to me) and why she got so scared. Second, it made me think about how many more times she would probably see something like that, especially around me; a dad who likes action and sci-fi flicks. My son, as mentioned in my post, has gone from wondering about whether or not we will die from a bomb/zombies/aliens or terrorists popping out with guns (like in video games) to thinking some problems can be solved the same way. I definitely have my work cut out for me now.

I guess what I'm trying to say is you have to give respect at both ranges. If you want to play the game with your child, send me an invite and we'll play capture the flag all night. But if someone else wants their son or daughter to have one more moment of happiness from worry about war and death, there is some good in that too. Just imagine, how great would that be if you could give your child a world without war? Since it is so great, why be in a rush to give them the opposite right now?

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hockeymum December 15, 2008


My goodness, this conversation is really swaying.
Blacklion your quote-
"I guess what I'm trying to say is you have to give respect at both ranges." I though I was. How was I not? I was simply explaining the game to a parent who doesn't know about it and I continually asked for them to investigate themselves to form their own opinion on what is acceptable for their son to watch. Differnet strokes for different folks. They wanted to know if the game is violent and level of swearing which I answered. I also included that it is very historical and great care to show respect to veterans who lived through this.
How this would you send your child to war question posed to me was actually off topic and I wished I never responded now as some are not reading what I wrote in the context I wanted. Like I said I don't understand why just because I enjoy a WW2 game; suddenly it means I'm for sending my child to war and love violence.
Im done with this post now. I was actually a few days ago but I don't want to have the perception that I go around wanting war so I responded (respectively) to the question asked of me.

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maggie93215 December 15, 2008


Randesmom, My husband is like yours he tells me that I try to overprotect him. I love my sons innocence that is something that once its gone is gone. I feel like we all know our children and what there maturity level is and it is different from child to child. So you need to do what is best for your child.

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blacklion December 15, 2008


HockyMum-

Actually the kid going off to war example was directed more toward Vacked. I could have been clearer when I said that. Sorry, I didn't mean for you to feel like that was directed at your comments. I was trying to illustrate how that even thought I didn't want to make it seem as serious as Vacked said it, I also wanted to say to you how innocence was a valuable commodity.

I was trying to speak to the idea/attitude you spoke of when you said that "I guess they should never play a mario cart racing either as I don't want them to speed later on..." or "I've played them all. And the language he hears at school is way worse." My point was, if the parent did want to shield their child from depictions that speeding is fun or that foul language has to be endured, what is wrong with that? I enjoy playing race car games myself, but I strongly encourage my children to be the example in not using foul language, and if their friends do it, to be the one to call them on it.

Sure there will always be something that someone else has said, "Why keep fighting it? Everyone else is already used to it." To that I say, "Not me or my family."

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vacekd1001 December 15, 2008


hockeymum sorry i caused so much trouble for you. i am very intense about certain issues. bottom line I feel 14 is to young to view life like violence. i am not into video games. i know nothing of the world at war games. i have no interest in playing it. however i am not against video games even violent ones for older children. my 18yr old nephew wanted gears of war 11 for his birthday. from reading about it i personally would not want to play it. He likes it, let him have at it.

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laura1967 December 15, 2008


You know , i really do not get the "fuss". Most /ALL kids ,know it is a "game". and if they have any sense, they are not going to go out and do all the things on the "video game". I agree, with a lot of you guys, they see "stuff" in MOVIES" worse, or on even "C.S.I.? " Good kids / teens are GOOD kids. And YES, I agree, with all of the "HISTORY" and the rest." It is all in how you raise your children."

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carvell04 December 16, 2008


I personally think there are reasons for the ratings. My son plays games that are T for teen. He has played war games that are T for teen. My husband has played Mature rated war games and there is a BIG difference in the language and the gross blood shed and gore.

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curlysue December 16, 2008


Personally I feel as the parent you have to decide whether it is appropriate for your child to play this video game. Each family is different as to what they allow in their home. Horror movies and graphic games or videos have never been allowed in our home. I consider myself blessed because my children have never had the desire to see or play such things. I understand that children do hear other children repeating foul language that has been heard, or imitating gestures they have seen on these videos. My children do not see it as the way of the world, they see it as ignorance because we have chosen a diffent path in life.



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