Friday, May 02, 2008

Every Story About Grand Theft Auto IV you've seen/read this week

Just so you don't have to read or watch any of the coverage of Grand Theft Auto IV this week on any of the mainstream news sites, channels or programs, here is the basic gist of every story about the game condensed into its most essential points.


GTA IV is a violent game that is poised to give the movie Iron Man a run for its money this weekend as the most popular form of media entertainment this weekend. And despite the fact that there is some economic turbulence at this time, people are spending record amounts of money buying it at 60 dollars a pop.

But crusaders like Jack Thompson and the Parents Television Council are unhappy with the violent and sexually degrading content of this game, and want retailers to ensure that children can't buy it followed by a set of nebulous statistics about either the number of kids who have played the series, a mention of a particular court case that involved a violent act or a recent shoplifter who stole a copy of GTA IV along with a few other games from a California Gamestop.

Now, let's talk to three adults on the street and in a game store about this controversial title.

First, the concerned adult woman who thinks that people shouldn't make games like this. Second, a young male gamer who gushes about the game and talks up its narrative merits. And then finally, a young mother or father who is buying the game for their son aged 12-14, followed by an picture of the game's ESRB ratings sticker.

Finally, let's talk to a media critic or a representative from Rockstar Games about the impact of the game or the fact that aside from all the criminal activities, one could also just play the game to explore a vibrant and dynamic urban environment without resorting to criminal acts. While they are talking about this, show footage or post a picture of Niko running from the police, looking through the scope of a sniper rifle or generally causing a lot of destruction. And then add a witticism or other journalistic flourish at the end and call it a day.


Yeah, I think I hit all the major points that these stories hit this week. Of course, this is just the generic story for the mainstream press. For the technical or video game specialty channels, one would have to add a section talking about the history of the series, a snippet about Xbox Live and a mention about the technical wonders of the game engine... and maybe a reference to Electronic Arts attempted takeover of Rockstar's parent company, Take Two as the icing on that cake.

Now I was also going to do the generic forum posts about GTA IV, but I thought that getting a frontal lobotomy necessary to do so wasn't worth it.


Megan said...

I'm trying to think of something you missed, but I don't think you missed anything.


MC said...

I strive for accuracy... wait, I mean flippancy.

Qelqoth said...

A friend of mine brought his PS3 and a copy of GTA4 over last night and I've come to the conclusion that I will never buy a PS3 and I will never buy this game.

I'd never leave the fucking couch if I did. But man, it sure was heaps of fun.

MC said...

Trust me, I totally understand. Back in 2005, I was dead set against buying a Playstation 2... because I would go game crazy.

Then that April, I played GTA: San Andreas... and now I have a PS2 and 120 games for it. Damn you Rockstar.