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Are Military Sims glorifying War.

Posted By: marko1231123

Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 03:28 PM

I was speaking to a friend of mine today, Its his sons birthday on Saturday
I am going to get his son a computer game for his birthday.
So I asked my friend what type of Games does his son like, to which my mate replied anything accept a war game
I asked why, He replied war games glorifies war. my point to him was if anything they show how lethal modern Weapons and combat is and how futile war is. He countered this argument with how many war games show in detail
What happens to a human being when he is hit with a bullet or blown up set on fire. (A Valid point) the discussion went on for a while. We agreed to disagree on the subject.
I will of course respect His wishes and not get his son a military type game.
This is probably the wrong place to post this,
But do you guys think there is any validity in his argument.
Posted By: RSColonel_131st

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 03:40 PM

Difficult and realistic stuff like Arma or Rise of Flight have driven the point well home to me that being dead or not is often just a matter of luck.

On the other hand plenty of "Call of Duty" style games do glorify the "hero" saving the world by killing the "bad guys".
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 03:44 PM

I would probably do this until my brain exploded rolleyes

It's his kid so it's his call, but no, I think he needs to loosen his panties a bit. We have plenty of people here that are incredible people, and they all seem fine after those evil video games.

Additionally, sometimes a human being needs to be hit with a bullet or set on fire, and we pay good money to train people to do it. Most video games hardly make this realistic (for a reason) but the world ain't perfect. Games would be damn boring without conflict and TV is a thousand times more violent than your average sim.

But then again, I believe in teaching kids about what they see and what it means, and imbuing them with good morals from their parents instead of letting video games teach them about the world.

That is my rant, worth as much as you paid for it biggrin

Edit: I should probably add when I'm thinking of military games I'm thinking of the original Operation Flashpoint, Rise of Flight etc, not Doom and Call of Duty. There's a difference and as a parent it's their job to get off their ass and do some research.
Posted By: PanzerMeyer

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 03:45 PM

This is analogous to asking if action movies glorify violence so I'll leave it at that except to simply say that if you think a game is "glorifying war" then simply don't play it.
Posted By: FlashBurn

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 03:46 PM

SIMS imo show war to be an awful bloody mess.

Games that show modern war as fun filled adventure are something else. Many folks on the "outside" can not see the difference. Modern COD sort is awful, it does nothing right to portray combat for what it is. Older teens can generally tell the difference. I really do not think younger children can. The brain washed 11 year old kid who asked me who I VERSED in Iraq made me want to hit the parents.

But on the other hand, just about everything glorifies violence in media.

RO2 at least has soldiers crying for momma as they bleed out. I do not see how any sane person would want to fight on the Eastern front after playing that for awhile.
Posted By: Raw Kryptonite

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 04:02 PM

How old is the kid?
As I think everyone agrees, it's the parents' right, but also age can be a factor. Waiting until the kid is older and learns the difference between real and tv/movies/games and can be talked to and understand that games have little to do with how things are in real life is a very good idea. IMO that means early teens, maybe 12, but different kids mature at different rates, so earlier or later might be better for some.

I've kind of seen the opposite effect. From time to time I talk to my kids about joining the military when older. My son has an image of everyone going out to get shot because of the games. I'm trying to teach him that everyone is trained with a gun and basic training, but it takes 1000's of people behind the scenes to make the military work, not just infantry. Not everyone is up front with a gun as a Marine or in the Army. I want them to use the opportunity for some technical education, learn a skill, see the world or at least the US some. Not to mention the discipline I know my son in particular would benefit from. Having seen some ships and planes, I thought Navy or Air Force would suit them. That's probably me projecting my interest on them though. They're still young of course, but my son needs to be making plans for after high school.
Posted By: Rakov

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 04:30 PM

The first time I picked up Operation Flashpoint after years of CoD, MoH, counterstrike, (doom, unreal etc) it was harrowing, scary, and I loved it. Military sims dont' glorify anything. No Achievements popping up, no "KILL STREAK!!!"
Simulations are just that, and you can feel it in your gut. I absolutely think that CoD glorifies war, it also makes it fun! Just like counterstrike. Those aren't sims... they are shooters. I mean... games like POSTAL, you gotta be educated about what you're buying, what you're looking for.

I bought Arma 2 for my 11 and 9 year old. We played one mission, where they didn't fire, but I did. They were uncomfortable. I'll trot that out in another couple years, whoops.
Posted By: marko1231123

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 04:54 PM

I just checked the age ratings on a few games.
Its 16 for DCS and 13 for MOH.
I cut and pasted the ESRB game ratings.
They look about right to me.



Rating Categories

esrb ratings symbol for ec games EARLY CHILDHOOD

Content is intended for young children.


esrb ratings symbol for E-rated games EVERYONE

Content is generally suitable for all ages. May contain minimal cartoon, fantasy or mild violence and/or infrequent use of mild language.


esrb ratings symbol for e10 games EVERYONE 10+

Content is generally suitable for ages 10 and up. May contain more cartoon, fantasy or mild violence, mild language and/or minimal suggestive themes.


esrb ratings symbol for T-rated games TEEN

Content is generally suitable for ages 13 and up. May contain violence, suggestive themes, crude humor, minimal blood, simulated gambling and/or infrequent use of strong language.


esrb ratings symbol for m-rated games MATURE

Content is generally suitable for ages 17 and up. May contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language.


esrb ratings symbol for AO-rated games ADULTS ONLY

Content suitable only for adults ages 18 and up. May include prolonged scenes of intense violence, graphic sexual content and/or gambling with real currency.


esrb ratings symbol for rp rating RATING PENDING

Not yet assigned a final ESRB rating. Appears only in advertising, marketing and promotional materials related to a game that is expected to carry an ESRB rating, and should be replaced by a game's rating once it has been assigned.


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NOTE: Rating Category assignments can also be based upon a game or app's
Posted By: Charlie_SB

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 05:28 PM

I think it's a clear glorification of war. That said, it's usually not glorifying the essence of war which would be the destruction of nations and the control of mankind. It's usually not glorifying the men rulers who wage war on soldiers and civilian populations. What is glorified is the competition aspect of the war, him or me, machine against machine and so on. Nobody can deny that war machines are pretty awesome. They look the part and they bring technology forward faster than anything. It's quite a lot of fun to play hide and seek and shoot another player and be the winner.

With millions of games to choose from I don't see why it should be a war game. Get the kid a driving game and a racing wheel (and a heavy metal album).

-C-
Posted By: Raw Kryptonite

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 05:54 PM

Kids have been playing "army", "cowboys and indians", "pirates", "King Arthur and swords" and all of that for hundreds of years. The difference now is the graphical aspect of games, but some would argue acting out the roleplaying like kids did a lot more of before video games is just as bad.
As long as there are kids, there will be war games of some sort.
Posted By: Kontakt5

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 06:18 PM

They don't in and of themselves glorify war unless they have a particular message which does that, which is actually pretty rare. I can't think of many simulation or sim-lite games which actually impart a specific message glorifying war much more than a game of chess does that (which is after all a primitive war game), or lots of jingoism or nationalism or the idea that war is fun, even if the games themselves are fun.
Military simulations usually don't portray all that much gore, either. If anything, the opposite sort of happens- blow up a plane, ship, truck, tank, or house, you don't necessarily see the deaths of the characters inside of them.

Even arcade ego shooters like Battlefield or Call of Duty- which are usually more close and personal (or games like Doom, which are bloodier), than more sim-like games probably do not glorify war as much as people would believe, otherwise you would see lots and lots more people quick to enlist and request a combat MOS or related field.

I think people's values aren't as simply malleable because of video games, just the same way that authority figures and morality groups have contended that games tend to de-sensitize young people and promotes mayhem and violence, there's no actual causation there- if anything, violent crime statistics seem to have no causal relationship with violent content in games, crime rates can go up or down independent of all that and are probably associated with a slew of other risk factors. You can have a bunch of dudes who never get out of the house playing Xbox wasting other video game characters all day long for their entire lives, but the moment that a patriotic call for enlistment comes, these guys would be the first to say, "No way, hell with that."

What you will see are some individuals- whether prone to criminal behavior, or whether they had heroic or romantic ideals about war to begin with- attracted to violent video games and military simulations, but they already brought that to the deal beforehand. That could be something already related to their upbringing, local culture, or even genetics.

Posted By: Rakov

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 06:27 PM

That's the thing, we only look at the extreme levels though, because that's what comes through the media. Not the small influences seeing someone's head explodes has on the psyche of a youngling. Sure, they do well in school, never kill anyone, basically get over it, laugh about it with friends. But the slight taint to states of mind, to being a loving person, all that... very volatile substances in all people. Maybe they value all human life or all life .1% less. Maybe they see the fragility of it all and value life .1% more. It all depends on the weave and the weaver of our threads of life. I can have bloodsoaked yarn, or I can have rainbow colored warm cloud yarn to weave with.

News does the same thing.

Reading the news on my computer: "Father rapes daughter, leaves body in a trashcan, shoots mother than self" (paraphrase) big red letters headline on my screen. Turn around, there's my son looking over my shoulder.

I dont' know what my point is anymore ... I want a drink.
Posted By: Clydewinder

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 06:29 PM

Originally Posted By: Raw Kryptonite
Kids have been playing "army", "cowboys and indians", "pirates", "King Arthur and swords" and all of that for hundreds of years. The difference now is the graphical aspect of games, but some would argue acting out the roleplaying like kids did a lot more of before video games is just as bad.
As long as there are kids, there will be war games of some sort.


Exactly. Does building a block fort for plastic army men glorify war? He's got a lever-action cap gun, does that glorify violence? We've built some model fighter planes and battleships together, is that war-mongering? I think not.

I let my son ( 2nd grade ) play a bunch of different games on the computer and an old X-Box... I draw the line at blood and coarse language. If there is a "blood/gore on/off" option it goes to off, and if the game contains anything more profane than the word "crap" then it's no-go.
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 06:37 PM

The more you try to isolate a kid the more the real world is going to b*tch slap them in the face.

Death is a pretty damn common theme in the real world, and games that aren't moronic gore fests touch on the good parts while minimizing the bad. Unless you have a sadly low desire to teach your children proper values video games aren't going to change a thing.

I remember when I was a wee lad, I was incredibly nervous asking my parents to buy me a shooter for my console, Rainbow Six 2. I'd never had a "realistic" and violent game before, and after I received it and played it you know what I learned? Shooters are fun games to play. That's it. I wasn't raised by fools, and I didn't use a game to teach me a damn thing other than some guns look cool and multiplayer is a blast with friends.

I expect the parent in the original post to censor all TV and movies that have an iota of violence as well, and all interactions with fellow children while we're at it. Sticks too. Anything less is just being a hypocrite.

Of course, this is assuming the kid is older. We aren't talking about a 2 year old here I assume.
Posted By: No105_Archie

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 06:38 PM

I think that we have so insulated kids from "life" that sometimes a computer game could affect them. What was pretty 'normal' for a farm kid ......slaughtering pigs, cattle, chickens; or even shovelling manure would now "traumatise" children.

As to games glorifying war ....I agree with Raw Kryp and Clydwinder
Posted By: Jedi Master

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 06:38 PM

People see things different ways, and to say it makes no difference is the same extreme as saying it makes a ton of difference. Some people are more weak-willed/minded and are swayed by external forces quite a bit. Others are stronger/stubborn and don't get changed easily if at all.

I will however point out that the history of the USA at least is one of extreme violence, from early fighting with the natives to colonial proxy wars to independence and civil ones followed by overseas all along still fighting amongst ourselves.

Before videogames it was movies and TV. Before that it was music. Before that it was comic books. Before that it was regular books. Through it all has been drugs and alcohol. There are always "harmful" forms of entertainment that some claim need to be suppressed or eliminated or at least highly regulated, and there are always going to be people who will consume it even if illegal.

How much you decide to expose your children to, how you present it, and when, is up to you.




The Jedi Master
Posted By: Kontakt5

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 06:45 PM

At the risk of sounding PWEC, our foreign policy is not peaceful- it is very forceful, using military force in order to achieve political objectives when other states do things or don't do things we don't like. We spend more than other country on 'defense,' and none of that has anything to do with video games. Likewise, North Korea glorifies war in a way that appears completely absurd to everyone else, and it's not because of video games or Hollywood.

Even when state governments start the drum beats for war, it doesn't always mean their citizens are fully enthused about it, either.
Posted By: marko1231123

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 06:48 PM

Originally Posted By: Clydewinder
Originally Posted By: Raw Kryptonite
Kids have been playing "army", "cowboys and indians", "pirates", "King Arthur and swords" and all of that for hundreds of years. The difference now is the graphical aspect of games, but some would argue acting out the roleplaying like kids did a lot more of before video games is just as bad.
As long as there are kids, there will be war games of some sort.


Exactly. Does building a block fort for plastic army men glorify war? He's got a lever-action cap gun, does that glorify violence? We've built some model fighter planes and battleships together, is that war-mongering? I think not.

I let my son ( 2nd grade ) play a bunch of different games on the computer and an old X-Box... I draw the line at blood and coarse language. If there is a "blood/gore on/off" option it goes to off, and if the game contains anything more profane than the word "crap" then it's no-go.






I agree with most of your comments.
But I cant help thinking although I have never served in the military.
Why have I got such an interest in weapons and tactics,
could it be in my youth I played war games, Action man toy soldiers
My father was a war movie/Documentary fanatic
I used to watch them with him.
My point is maybe I was militarised with out even knowing It.
I watched a documentary once about future soldiers
Part of the commentary stated the younger generation were able to adapt to high tech weapons systems a lot Quicker Due to there exposer to computer technology, Hell the American army even created a free Game.
That put You through basic training and It was a pretty good game.
Posted By: Kontakt5

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 06:52 PM

Well, there is an appeal to it- the extreme risks, the skills which it takes to survive, and so on.

Maybe there's an evolutionary explanation for it- even young animals of many species participate in mock combat as a form of play.
Posted By: Brun

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 06:56 PM

I think videogames largely trivialise the subject rather than glorify it.

Rarely are there moral decisions that have any actual implications for the player, particularly in the typical first person shooter. Even when MW2 did the hugely controversial airport thing, the choice of how to play through the level didn't have any bearing on the outcome or events further down the line.
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 07:03 PM

There was pretty much no other way to play the level other than shoot as many police as possible. That would be an example of one of the more moronic games. It tried to make some sort of political statement, and fails miserably.

Operation Flashpoint, however, is you and some other dudes fighting some generic bad guys and is basically the graphical equivalent of playing army men in the back yard.
Posted By: Smokin_Hole

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 07:07 PM

The older I get, the less interesting I find violence both in passive media as well as games. When younger I tolerated gun culture as something I grew up with but never really warmed up to. Now my feelings about it are nowhere near so passive. So you could say that aggression is a huge turn-off for me and my distaste for it increases with time. However I don't think violent games encourage violence. The conditions that come with true violence such as fear, adrenalin and remorse are completely absent in games. Lacking these things, I feel that they really don't even qualify as "violent". They are simply cartoonish conduits for aggression and competition. Like Earth itself they are "Mostly Harmless".
Posted By: Dervish

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 07:24 PM

I think they do glorify war because real war is a meatgrinder and it ain't pretty.

On the other hand, I think most people realize there is a big difference between reality and simulations, even racing sims, etc.

If there were no young people, there would be no war, because once you reach a certain age, you aren't going to participate unless it's on your front door.
Posted By: PanzerMeyer

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 07:27 PM

Originally Posted By: Dervish

If there were no young people, there would be no war, because once you reach a certain age, you aren't going to participate unless it's on your front door.


Right. The old people just order the young people to fight their wars for them. wink
Posted By: Master

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 07:47 PM

Quote:
But do you guys think there is any validity in his argument?


Yes, they do glorify war but I dont see a problem with that. In fact by keeping his kid away from such material might glorify war even more in the kid's mind and cause the exact opposite of what he is trying to protect his kid from.
Posted By: marko1231123

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 07:54 PM

One thought that was sparked by this topic


Yes every nation should celebrate its military achievements and honour the fallen.
I don't think it matters what country or what war.
But I also think school kids in there late teens should be encouraged to watch documenters with veterans talking about experiences I have watched a lot of documentary's with vets.
Nearly all come to tears whilst recounting there experiences the one that sticks in my mind was
A US army captain who had the job of leading a crew collecting and repairing knocked out tanks. with tears in his eyes he told how they often had to use shovels to clear out the body parts and then had to hose out the Tanks. fifty year later and the guy still had nightmares.
Posted By: Kontakt5

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 08:20 PM

I think Brun is closer to the truth- they can trivialize war, which is not the same as glorifying it. Glorfying war requires a more specific message, and I don't see many games actually take a stance in order to do that.

Presenting the subject matter as entertainment, yes, I get that. But I believe there is some distance between that and inserting values in a game which honors war, which honors the traits of combatants or honors ideals about war in the same way. Glorifying war usually involves glorifying death- putting combatants in love with death. Poems that glorify war often more talk about the values in dying for a cause more than they even glorify killing an adversary.

Games like Battlefield don't really do this- the action is too much running around and dying but re-spawning again playing capture the flag rather than glorifying blood soaked standards on the field of battle. The games just aren't that sentimental.

This doesn't mean you don't get all the leet speak on open comm channels and insults and taunts running back and forth, but that goes more to trivializing war rather than glorifying it- it's still sort of self contained in its own universe, despite the subject matter it emulates.

For example, people might comment on a player's mad skillz, which are wholly unrealistic and unrelated to actual war, but this wouldn't be the same as a game which teaches players the lesson that war is the only necessary and desired outcome, that war is the highest example of human experience and culture, or simply, that war, and death are beautiful. It's more the skills involved in bunny hopping or sniping a pilot through a helicopter canopy rather than a sentimental approach to the subject matter, in other words.

I've met some characters like this, and it wasn't video games that put that in their heads. These usually tended to be very idealistic but lonely people who always felt like they didn't belong or something.
Posted By: Nixer

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 08:27 PM

No current games or sims that I am aware of glorify war.

Could one be made to do so???

Yep, big time. Propaganda weapon of the future....
Posted By: Top Gun

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 08:28 PM

In my opinion, GTA glorifies violence far more than any war game out there. I'll let my boys play CoD or BF, they're 13 & 10, but I won't allow them to play GTA. I even hated GTA and returned it.
Posted By: radicaldude1234

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 08:43 PM

I think military simulations should be as realistic as possible. Not just the gore and agony of those taking part, but also the collateral damage inevitably inflicted on civilians and the refugees that war causes.

Military games tend to focus on the glory of war that is distilled into a simplistic good vs evil conflict, and almost totally ignore the horrors. I know seeing bodies realistically torn apart by modern weaponry, experiencing inadvertently dropping a bomb on the wrong house, and passing columns of physically young men whose exhausted eyes look as if they've already died inside won't sell games. But it's part of the terribly terribly sad thing that is war.

I also don't think that striving to depict the true nature of human conflict diminishes the courageous deeds of those survived them. Rather, it highlights the difficulty and truly extraordinary will that it took overcome those difficulties and do something more than survive.

But that's just me.

It is well that war is so terrible, otherwise we should grow too fond of it. - Robert E. Lee
Posted By: Dervish

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 08:44 PM

He should protect his kid from guns and such. The world still needs interior decorators.
Posted By: marko1231123

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 08:51 PM


It is well that war is so terrible, otherwise we should grow too fond of it. - Robert E. Lee [/quote]


One of my favourite quotes.
The only thing worse than a battle lost is a battle won.
Arthur Wellesley, Aftermath of the Battle of Waterloo,
Posted By: Rakov

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 09:12 PM

Just helping because I like the quote too its:

"Nothing except a battle lost can be half so melancholy as a battle won."
Posted By: Kontakt5

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 09:15 PM

In contrast to video games presenting the subject matter for the purposes of entertainment, some gangsta rap videos glorify a lifestyle- it doesn't trivialize the lifestyle so much as it rather elevates it. Not only do you get money and hoodrat biatches added to your collection, you even get to go to prison- as if that's actually a good thing. You might even get to pay the ultimate sacrifice, and then, surrounded by your homies at your own funeral, you get proper respects as a G. The only thing that's missing is a golden halo around your body to really make the point glorious. It makes no distinction between what people normally consider good or bad, it's all the same thing. All of it is a specific ideal.

But video games and war simulations generally tend to lack the sentiment to go there. The subject matter isn't even 'deep' enough to present itself that way.

The intro to Warhammer Dawn of War sort of glorifies war (albeit in a fantasy setting) because of the way the space marines are hard charging and the flag goes up even though all of them are killed, and sort of elicits a sentimental notion about the heroic effort. The actual gameplay doesn't really do that, though. The gameplay doesn't feel as heroic whether in life or death as the intro. Just plays like any generic RTS click fest.


Posted By: Paradaz

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 09:24 PM

Whilst I would agree that the parent obviously has a right to say what his son can or cannot play, I personally think it comes down to the mindset of the child.

My honest opinion is that anyone who even raises a doubt about how their child might react to 'glorification' of war games or violent films has bigger concerns. I think it all comes down to the ability to differentiate right from wrong, violence or war on a screen to the real world.

I have let my kids play pretty much any game they want and watch films that are rated older than the recommendatation, this is because both my kids are fully aware of the difference between reality and fiction. Swearing is another classic example.....some of the '18' films may have excessive language but at the end of the day let's not pretend that kids are hearing something they probably haven't heard in the school playground even from a young age, or that they may on occasion use a word they shouldn't......however, if a a kid knows they shouldn't be using this sort of language in the first place and are capable of maintaining control then I don't see it as a problem.

Some of today's youth simply need a damn good hiding from their parents, there is a severe lack of respect and maturity these days. If my kids were any different I'd have reservations about the issues above but I don't see it as a problem at all. Ultimately, it's up to the parents to make a decision and any parent worth their salt will make a decision based on solid justification either way.
Posted By: Ssnake

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 09:47 PM

From a developer's perspective - and from peacenik Germany to boot - it's not easy to find a good balance between entertainment (I mean, a game has got to be somewhat fun and challenging), and the absence of trivialization. Indeed, that's the biggest danger as far as I can see. Glorifying war is easy to avoid by design and by content, and IMO it would be such a blunt instrument to influence the audience that it'd be next to worthless except for the most naive and uncritical of all people.

I mean, apparently with 17 you're old enough to enlist and pick up a real rifle. I say, before you do, have a faint glimpse of what might await you in the form of movies, games, and above all, talking to other people about the subject. Military simulations that take the simulation aspect seriously don't glorify. They inform about a specific (and limited) aspect of (contemporary, or historical) conflict and technology. Ideally they serve as a starting point for the audience to read up the subject matter and inform themselves more.

Saying that games do not influence the audience at all is IMO propaganda of the video games industry. Apparently some developers (and especially the industry organizations and their lawyers, far more influential in a litigious society than they ought to be) do not really want to take responsibility. They get their rating, and that's it. If video games had no effect at all, we couldn't sell our software as an actual tool for training and education. But I don't think that the effect is much stronger than watching a movie, or reading (powerful) literature. And in none of these cases you can control what the audience will be taking home with it.
Example: Full Metal Jacket.
Critics still aren't sure if it's an anti-war film or a war film. Apparently it is ambiguous enough to confuse the knee-jerkers. Usually that's an indicator for a complex piece of art. If the message is a blunt, one-sided piece, it's usually to the detriment of the work's artistic value.


How can we educate people doing the right thing in video games if there is no meaningful choice to be made?

If the player is never given the freedom to make questionable choices in a frakking game, how can we trust a 20 year-old lieutenant to make the right decision in life or death situations?

It is my impression that most critics of electronic entertainment are simply not at ease with the fact that the player enjoys freedom to make his own decisions, for better or for worse.


Anyway, as far as visuals are concerned, as a developer you can't win. If you don't show guts & gore you can be accused of showing a "clean" war. If you have plenty of it in it, you're glorifying violence. To be honest, I find these recurring debates about new media utterly boring. Since the 1850s it was literature that tainted the youth, followed by cinema, comic books, television, cinema again, VCRs, video games, the internet, video games again, and it seems as if the debate is now shifting to the social media (and I agree, those really are the devil ... a sure sign of age, I guess: Condemning what you don't understand).
The debate is sometimes even literally, down to the words, the same. Malleable young minds are exposed to filth, indecency, and this just inspires young people to disrespect the elderly, to not listen to their parents, and somehow the world is going down the drain soon, very soon! if we don't do something about it. Like, censorship. Rating systems. Access control. Age barriers. Has it ever worked? Aren't the same people who now ask for video games to be banned those who fondly remember when as young kids they snuck into a cinema and watched films way above their age rating?
But of course, that was totally different, cannot be compared, better times ... until you start researching the 1950s and 1960s and you realized that there was bullying at schools back then as much as it is today, that some sick people went to schools back then to shoot children and teachers, that domestic violence and alcoholism was just as bad if not worse than it is today, that the rate of sexual assault has actually dramatically receded over the decades.
"Good old times" never were. They are the result of selective memory and unquestioned gerontocratic propaganda.
Posted By: Clydewinder

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 09:50 PM

Great thread BTW, and good comments by all.

bump
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 10:00 PM

Originally Posted By: radicaldude1234
I think military simulations should be as realistic as possible. Not just the gore and agony of those taking part, but also the collateral damage inevitably inflicted on civilians and the refugees that war causes.

Military games tend to focus on the glory of war that is distilled into a simplistic good vs evil conflict, and almost totally ignore the horrors. I know seeing bodies realistically torn apart by modern weaponry, experiencing inadvertently dropping a bomb on the wrong house, and passing columns of physically young men whose exhausted eyes look as if they've already died inside won't sell games. But it's part of the terribly terribly sad thing that is war.

I also don't think that striving to depict the true nature of human conflict diminishes the courageous deeds of those survived them. Rather, it highlights the difficulty and truly extraordinary will that it took overcome those difficulties and do something more than survive.

But that's just me.

It is well that war is so terrible, otherwise we should grow too fond of it. - Robert E. Lee


You're right, no one would buy it, because we want simple entertainment and not a sob story documentary about humans and why all war is bad bad bad.

In my opinion those that would enjoy the above may have mental health issues beyond wanting to play games. All of that can be learned and understood easily without games, and I would argue that the above actually runs a damn good chance of glorifying horror more than anything else.

Basically this seems like a case of looking too far into something that's very shallow. Sims are the evolution of running around in your backyard like a fool making airplane noises. If one is mentally sane neither should cause any urges to go shoot someone. Additionally, there's a time and a place for learning why war sucks, and it's not entertaining and honestly when people sit down to dink around with friends they don't care about any of the above for good reason.

Really what I'm trying to say in a nutshell is what I said before. The parent needs to get the panties unbunched from the butt and actually raise their kids instead of blindly letting some sims (which are all evil because they involve war and war is bad m'kay) somehow raise them.
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 10:03 PM

By the way Ssnake, nice post.
Posted By: Stormtrooper

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 10:09 PM

Reminds me of back in the day when they said listening to Metallica, Megadeath, AC/DC etc etc will turn me into
a Devil worshiper. shedevil
Posted By: Ssnake

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 10:39 PM

...or playing D&D!
Posted By: marko1231123

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 10:39 PM

Originally Posted By: Clydewinder
Great thread BTW, and good comments by all.

bump


+1.

I am half tempted to forward on Ssnakes comments to my friend.
But I wont. LoL My friend and I agreed to disagree I will leave it there.
By the way his son will be ten on Friday And I was going to get him Call of duty before I asked my mate for his Sons preference in games. looking at the pegi he would have been to young any way. which in its self is Interesting that you can play a game like that at the age of thirteen but not a DCS module there all sixteen's.
This has been an interesting discussion, I wonder what way the consensus would have went on a none gamer forum.
Posted By: Nixer

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 10:40 PM

Apple agrees completely I guess from their ban the game because of enemies thing.

In their little warm, fuzzy world there are no enemies.

That world is as real as Caprica.
Posted By: Dart

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 10:50 PM

Give a five year old boy a stick and he'll either A) pretend it's a rife and "shoot" one with it, or 2) realize it can be used as a club and hit one with it.

War and violence are a vital part of us on a hardware level.

Glorify war for noble reasons....or someone else will teach them ignoble reasons for fighting them.
Posted By: Ssnake

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 11:04 PM

Dart, you forgot option c) - if it's pointy you can stab with it, or d) throw it as a spear.
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/03/14 11:07 PM

Ah... throwing sticks as spears. They never really flew straight did they?
Posted By: Raw Kryptonite

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 12:04 AM

Originally Posted By: Ssnake
...or playing D&D!


Oh yeah, that was a biggie back in the day. I'm glad my parents were above thinking that way.

I think COD is a little much for a 10 year old. Just my 2.
I let my son play at 11 and I wish I'd held off another year or so. The problem is you can't control what other parents allow, and kids will do things at other houses they can't at yours, unfortunately, when their friends can. There's a difference between that and giving the kid something the parent doesn't agree with though.
It isn't just about violence, but language too. Too young and they don't ignore things as well as if you let them mature a bit.
My son is 14 and I still have his 360 locked down to friends-only comms in games. There are some idiots out there and if I heard him mimicking some of those taunting kids (and adults!) he'd be offline in a heartbeat.
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 12:07 AM

Agreed. Watch your kids, I really have no desire to play with yet another mini Hitler online.
Posted By: TankHunter

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 02:24 AM

Originally Posted By: radicaldude1234
I think military simulations should be as realistic as possible. Not just the gore and agony of those taking part, but also the collateral damage inevitably inflicted on civilians and the refugees that war causes.

Military games tend to focus on the glory of war that is distilled into a simplistic good vs evil conflict, and almost totally ignore the horrors. I know seeing bodies realistically torn apart by modern weaponry, experiencing inadvertently dropping a bomb on the wrong house, and passing columns of physically young men whose exhausted eyes look as if they've already died inside won't sell games. But it's part of the terribly terribly sad thing that is war.

I also don't think that striving to depict the true nature of human conflict diminishes the courageous deeds of those survived them. Rather, it highlights the difficulty and truly extraordinary will that it took overcome those difficulties and do something more than survive.

But that's just me.

It is well that war is so terrible, otherwise we should grow too fond of it. - Robert E. Lee


Agree. Thats the thing I noticed with media in general, it sanitizes what happens. With news you may hear for example "Israel bombed :insert thing here: and killed 6 Palestinians." But you never see say some poor father digging his 4 year old daughter out of the ruins, finding her and holding her body with her half crushed skull. All because her home may have been near a tunnel or some such. The same thing with some attack by Boko Haram or some other damn thing.

Media may document the tragedy of events, but not the sobering, brutal horror of them. Perhaps showing the horror of it may undermine some Manichean narrative, or undermine our will to use force but I think it is rather important to show. When we decide to "go to war for humanitarianism" or democracy or some other damn thing it is probably important to illustrate what exactly that entails. In each case it involves visiting brutality upon people, often enough against civilians and non-combatants, whether it is intended or not, or whether we use "smart" weapons or not. The result might be hundreds or thousands of civilians being turned into hamburger over a matter of weeks or months (if things go well). If not it may lead to tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of civilians being turned into hamburger, or executed in various ways as a result of them being a member of the wrong tribe, sect, etc over a matter of years, or decades.
Posted By: FlashBurn

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 03:25 AM

Some one has to protect the village and it seems its generally built into little boys. The issue is the that folks attempt to often protect their children in the wrong ways from images of violence. Buying COD or some such for a 10 year old who has never seen real images of say ww2 and had that explained to them, but here is this fun game you can play. That is the introduction to conflict? Stories and entertainment have always focused on conflict. The tales of a great warrior or tribal leader are everywhere in history. Was often the result of your families and communities survival in difficult times. Modern mans number 1 predator is another human. Its a sad state of things. Sometimes good people have to go to war.

I think their is a hell of alot of focus on the "fun" fighting bit in entertainment and not on the moral reasons and after math. I am not saying beat people over the head with it, but just a bit of a reminder. But from oral tales to games with a myopic focus and parents that want to think the world is a safe wonderful place, just what are the costs? Now we indeed have the little hitlers running around in online games. Parents clearly failed their children. So now what?

I was I guess a weird kid. I was reading about the battle of Jutland and ww2 in general at age 8. My Mother was a Vietnam vet and of course both male grand parents where ww2 and one also in Korea. It was made vary clear in a good way what war was. I also had my NES playing things like metal gear. It was a freaken fun game =) But I had that moral fiber of what real war was, a horrible nasty thing that sometime good brave people have take one for their tribe, community, or nation. It is at the same time a truly sad thing, but also a vary noble thing to do. Just pray the powers that be unleash the hell of war for a GOOD reason.

But 10 or 11 year olds who after playing COD say insane things like I think it would be fun to shoot someone is totally screwed up. Is it the game or the parents?
Posted By: Dervish

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 03:47 AM

From Forgotten Soldier, by Guy Sajer:

In no time, it (a tank) had crossed the trench, which was overflowing with the bodies of Russian soldiers. Then a second and a third tank plunged through the bloody paste, and rolled on, their treads stuck with horrible human remnants. Our noncom gave an involuntary cry of horror at the sight.

Later:

Young Lindberg, who had been in a state of panic ever since the beginning of the offensive, and who had been either weeping in terror or laughing in hope, took Kraus's machine gun and shoved two Bolsheviks into a shell hole. The two wretched victims were both a good deal older than the boy, and kept imploring his mercy. We could hear their desparate shouts for a long time. But Lindberg, in a paroxysm of uncontrollable rage, kept firing until they were quiet.
Posted By: LukeFF

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 03:50 AM

marko, do you have trouble locating the question mark on your keyboard?
Posted By: Ajay

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:43 AM

Originally Posted By: Raw Kryptonite
Originally Posted By: Ssnake
...or playing D&D!


Oh yeah, that was a biggie back in the day. I'm glad my parents were above thinking that way.

I think COD is a little much for a 10 year old. Just my 2.
I let my son play at 11 and I wish I'd held off another year or so. The problem is you can't control what other parents allow, and kids will do things at other houses they can't at yours, unfortunately, when their friends can. There's a difference between that and giving the kid something the parent doesn't agree with though.
It isn't just about violence, but language too. Too young and they don't ignore things as well as if you let them mature a bit.
My son is 14 and I still have his 360 locked down to friends-only comms in games. There are some idiots out there and if I heard him mimicking some of those taunting kids (and adults!) he'd be offline in a heartbeat.


Just a quick addition, i used to play a bit of the original cod and my boy would have been 9 back then. I let him play it with me one night and later he had this monster of a nightmare. When he had calmed down and we were talking about it in bed at about 2 am he told me how all of the bad soldiers kept coming at him and were shooting him and he couldn't get up. No more games like that for a while needless to say biggrin We both still remember that night pretty clearly lol.

He is 17 now and plays GTA and black ops and the usual crop of games for that age and hasn't managed to beat up any old ladies on the street and does not think war is a 'fun' thing. He also listens to Megadeth and other like bands and is probably one of the nicest and most polite kids one could meet.
Posted By: Ssnake

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 07:05 AM

I'd have absolutely no trouble with a law that made all egoshooters and military sims PG16 or something to that effect (assuming that there was a reasonable way to phrase such a law without loopholes, or overreach - which is of course impossible). What I'm trying to say is that violent conflict shouldn't be trivialized in the presence of children, but at the age of 15, 16, they better have matured to the point that they can be exposed to it. At that age it only gives them a year or two to make up their minds about fundamental ethical questions of grave consequences - like conscription (where it still exists) or voluntary enlistment, be it the military, or law enforcement.

That said, there are still ways to introduce children to what violence and war means in a responsible manner, and in a non-trivializing and non-traumatizing way. Responsible parents will usually find a way, and there is no standard approach. I'm more concerned about the sad cases where no effective parental control exists because of child neglect. But that's a whole different aspect. Spending some time together is usually the best way to sense if a new video game is suitable for your kids.
Posted By: Alicatt

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 08:58 AM

Originally Posted By: Ssnake
Dart, you forgot option c) - if it's pointy you can stab with it, or d) throw it as a spear.

e)Some of us got a piece of string and made a bow out of the stick - then you could throw another stick further smile
Posted By: PanzerMeyer

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 10:47 AM

Originally Posted By: Alicatt
Originally Posted By: Ssnake
Dart, you forgot option c) - if it's pointy you can stab with it, or d) throw it as a spear.

e)Some of us got a piece of string and made a bow out of the stick - then you could throw another stick further smile


I prefer to make an atlatl with my sticks.
Posted By: oldgrognard

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 12:29 PM

I think that war games in general do glorify war to some extent. Just the same as the old ballads and epics did. Fighting seems to be part of the human condition. Historically we have glorified the warriors in most cultures. Young boys seem to have a militaristic/warrior streak in them as others have pointed out. Give them a stick and they are knight. Playing at war comes natural to them. Computer games just reflect that basic predisposition and up-the-ante with a technological improvement on the stick or board game. I think that like most technology it can be problematic because the technology advances so fast that we humans can't keep up or adjust fast enough. Some young people can be overwhelmed by the experience. Those who have some mental issue or weakness can be adversely affected. So do we limit it for all because of some ? I don't think so. But it is a troubling issue.

I can't play a lot of games because it causes troubled sleep and dreams.
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 01:04 PM

Originally Posted By: TankHunter
Originally Posted By: radicaldude1234



And not a single person would buy it, excepting some very mentally disturbed people that would get a big kick out of it. Games aren't the place for sob stories about humanity and no one is going to learn a damn thing from something that over the top, other than wondering why they wasted 60 bucks on it.
Posted By: Dart

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 01:57 PM

I suppose I'm just as weird a parent as I am a person otherwise - my son has always been immersed in geography and history. One of his first "picture books" was a world map; history is nearly meaningless without the geography to put it into perspective.

That said, I would never castigate a parent for limiting specific content from their child, since every child is very different. It's almost like they're individual people!

Knowing one's kid is the key. Some kids have no problem understanding cartoon violence from real violence, while others don't.

Then again, when I was about six I let all the trout off the stringer because they were suffering and struggling with each other, and no amount of gentle suggestions would get my father to kill them to put them out of their misery.
Posted By: ObvilionLost

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 02:24 PM

I'd say war games do glorify war to some extend. Only reason why I see war as something horrible is from war stories from my grandfather who fought on Eastern Front from 1943 until 1945, as many already know, this was one big meat grinder.
Posted By: PanzerMeyer

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 02:33 PM

Originally Posted By: ObvilionLost
I'd say war games do glorify war to some extend. Only reason why I see war as something horrible is from war stories from my grandfather who fought on Eastern Front from 1943 until 1945, as many already know, this was one big meat grinder.
If you don't mind me asking, did he serve there on the Axis or Soviet side? Just curious. smile
Posted By: Suicidal_6

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 02:52 PM

I don't feel that they glorify war. They are just games, play em that way and teach your kids that way. The old TV show, The A-Team, glorified war/violence. No one ever died, and the good guys always won.

On another note. I went from a nice surround sound speaker system to SS headphones. My wife asked me to because all the FPS games were giving her nightmares.
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 03:57 PM

Another point to consider is it may actually be a positive. If I didn't own old tactical shooters and games like Age of Empires I would have never gotten a big interest in military history.

As for the significant other, it doesn't give her nightmares but 1: I sound like a nerd when I play arma or fly and 2: sometimes fast paced games like Titanfall are obnoxious to listen to wink
Posted By: ObvilionLost

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 04:08 PM

Soviet side, 275th Separate Sapper Battalion. Southern Front from November 1943, First Baltic Front from June 1944 and 3rd Army since December 1944. Just for interesting history read: http://www.lithuanianjews.org.il/HTMLs/article_list4.aspx?C2014=14329&BSP=14062&BSS59=14055 read about Wolf Wilensky, Hitler is lucky that people like him did not storm his bunker. Sorry couldn't contain myself just love history especially when there is human connection tied to historical events. biggrin
Posted By: Jedi Master

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 04:40 PM

I think the opening 20 mins of Saving Pvt Ryan is a very good intro to what real combat can be like as opposed to the silliness of a COD, MOH, or other video game. Grim necessity, pain, futility, and death. No glory, no cheering, no BOOYAH!

If all a kid sees is COD, I can picture them thinking that hey, real war can't be that bad?

If a kid sees the assault on Omaha Beach, even a Hollywood-ized version of it, how can they think it's NOT?

COD today is just what Q3A was over 10 years ago with the veneer of authentic military forces.



The Jedi Master
Posted By: marko1231123

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 04:51 PM

Giving the issue more thought today
Many have already stated this but Movies
Have done a lot more to have glorified war then Video games
I was trying to remember how many war films I have Viewed that could be considered an anti War movies All quiet on the western front. full metal jacket. platoon. Casualties of war. Saving private Ryan sort off the opening scenes the D Day landings were brutally real.
But on the whole they have tended to be jingoistic in there content. I grow up watching john Wayne type
War movies. Where if a guy was wounded it was normally in the shoulder or arm in a magic world where guys did Not feel the pain of there wounds. At least todays war movies are a little more real.
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 04:54 PM

Keep in mind most of us also grew up on the silly Wayne style films, and it very well may have inspired plenty of our people to pursue noble causes.
Posted By: Pielstick

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:02 PM

Originally Posted By: Kontakt5
The intro to Warhammer Dawn of War sort of glorifies war


Interesting that you should use this to illustrate the point. Are you at all familiar with the WH40K setting and fiction? Basically Space Marines are humans removed from society around the age of puberty, brainwashed and indoctrinated into a cult and turned into utterly merciless killing machines who spend the rest of their days serving the Imperium of Mankind, which is basically the most cruel, murderous and ruthless regime you could possibly imagine.

The setting is extremely grim and does not glorify war at all.
Posted By: ObvilionLost

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:12 PM

There are enough movies that glorify war. Zero Dark Thirty not only glorifies war to some extent but it seemed even glorifies torture. When I was watching it in movie theater, some parents even bringing their kids.

Originally Posted By: Peally

As for the significant other, it doesn't give her nightmares but 1: I sound like a nerd when I play arma or fly and 2: sometimes fast paced games like Titanfall are obnoxious to listen to wink


I feel like a nerd just by reading After Action Reports or articles about tactics on SimHQ hahaha
Posted By: marko1231123

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:15 PM

Originally Posted By: Peally
Keep in mind most of us also grew up on the silly Wayne style films, and it very well may have inspired plenty of our people to pursue noble causes.



Don't get me wrong, the Duke was my hero when I was a kid.
And in fairness he tried to enlist when the Americans entered WW2.
They said he failed the medical, but I would speculate he was to valuable to the wars propaganda machine to risk Being killed in combat.
Posted By: PanzerMeyer

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:21 PM

We shouldn't confuse a film with "glorifying war" and a war film being made in such a way as to cater to a mainstream audience. As a general rule, movie audiences like to see an infallible or near infallible hero. They like to see war films with a clearly defined "good side" and "bad side".
Posted By: FlashBurn

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:21 PM

Originally Posted By: marko1231123
Originally Posted By: Peally
Keep in mind most of us also grew up on the silly Wayne style films, and it very well may have inspired plenty of our people to pursue noble causes.



Don't get me wrong, the Duke was my hero when I was a kid.
And in fairness he tried to enlist when the Americans entered WW2.
They said he failed the medical, but I would speculate he was to valuable to the wars propaganda machine to risk Being killed in combat.


I think that unlikely. Jimmy Stewart was flying B17's and dropping bombs.
Posted By: Kontakt5

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:26 PM

Originally Posted By: Pielstick
Originally Posted By: Kontakt5
The intro to Warhammer Dawn of War sort of glorifies war


Interesting that you should use this to illustrate the point. Are you at all familiar with the WH40K setting and fiction? Basically Space Marines are humans removed from society around the age of puberty, brainwashed and indoctrinated into a cult and turned into utterly merciless killing machines who spend the rest of their days serving the Imperium of Mankind, which is basically the most cruel, murderous and ruthless regime you could possibly imagine.

The setting is extremely grim and does not glorify war at all.


No, I have no experience with it other than the computer game.

All war in reality is grim, glorifying what is grim about war is what we're talking about.

The setting being grim isn't what I'm talking about- I'm talking about the presentation of the intro screen. When the space marines are charging the hill, the rousing music is playing, every last one of them are wiped out, but the flag is planted against the backdrop of the setting sun and elicits the feel of that heroic effort- yeah, I'd say that scene glorifies combat a bit.


Keep in mind I also said this is a fantasy setting and that the actual gameplay itself doesn't look like this (I think the actual meat of the computer game is cartoonish and doesn't really look grim or glorious).
Posted By: ObvilionLost

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:33 PM

I am surprised no one mentioned Sniper Elite 2, which seemed popular among teenagers especially they enjoyed looking at how a bullet travels through someones head.
Posted By: Kontakt5

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:36 PM

The idea that war is noble comes from a time when men at arms were aristocrats and gentlemen- they literally were from the nobility, and as such had rules such as chivalry (or Bushido) or whatever they came up with. People funded their own training and equipment and swore an oath not to countries but to lords. They in turn would raise armies from the lower classes, who probably didn't think there was much anything noble about it as those codes didn't apply to them.

This is before the Industrial Age and before industrial warfare, that is, before uniform conscription, regulations or issued equipment, before mass production, before total war.

This is a stark illustration about the nobility of the first of the industrial scale wars, the American Civil War:

http://www.medicalmuseum.mil/assets/images/galleries/civil_war/Wallen.jpg

I never found the idea of wars in self defense were noble, nor the idea of wars fought for political gain or territory as noble. Nobility actually meant a code of conduct for a select class, the idea of which is antiquated.
Posted By: HogDriver

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:42 PM

Sims don't generally glorify war. Shooters, real time strategy etc sometimes do, you know, the more mass market games...

I think I'd get annoyed with your buddy too. God forbid that his kid might:

1. Go to school and be taught how WW2 was such an important war because of the "evil" we fought against. (one example)
2. Watch the myriad TV shows and movies that glorify war. (or violence in general)
3. Watch an American sporting event where they have military aircraft flyovers, and take time to thank and recognize soldiers during the broadcast.
4. Listen to talking heads on news programs demanding that the USA/Israel/UN attack some country because they are "bad".
5. Make friends with other kids who like to play "Army" or "guns".
6. Etc etc?

Point is that even if he doesn't let his kid play military games, he's going to be constantly bombarded with messages from everywhere that either glorify war, or make it more attractive in some way.

I didn't read all 8 pages of replies...
Posted By: marko1231123

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:45 PM

Originally Posted By: Kontakt5
The idea that war is noble comes from a time when men at arms were aristocrats and gentlemen- they literally were from the nobility, and as such had rules such as chivalry (or Bushido) or whatever they came up with. People funded their own training and equipment and swore an oath not to countries but to lords. They in turn would raise armies from the lower classes, who probably didn't think there was much anything noble about it as those codes didn't apply to them.

This is before the Industrial Age and before industrial warfare, that is, before uniform conscription, regulations or issued equipment, before mass production, before total war.

This is a stark illustration about the nobility of the first of the industrial scale wars, the American Civil War:

http://www.medicalmuseum.mil/assets/images/galleries/civil_war/Wallen.jpg

I never found the idea of wars in self defense were noble, nor the idea of wars fought for political gain or territory as noble. Nobility actually meant a code of conduct for a select class, the idea of which is
antiquated.



Your statement is correct.
I was amazed to find out that British private schools used to keep arsenals of weapons
So they could train the next generation of officers and you were basically guaranteed a commission
If you went through that system. (not sure if they still do)
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:48 PM

The battle of Agincourt had zero chivalry involved despite the heavy presence of nobles as combatants. War has never really had a code aside from modern ROE (somewhat), it's more of a semi organized clusterf*ck.

That being said, knights sword fighting are cool, and the rest doesn't matter to a child nor should it. Sword wounds are horrifying, and I grew up with a concept of that despite thinking that swords fights are damn fun (and still are). It's ridiculous to drill the horrors of the world into a child at an early age and refuse basic entertainment like whacking each other with sticks (AKA ye olde video games). You're not raising a voting 40 year old man in a 5 year old's body.

I would disagree that defensive wars aren't noble. There isn't anything much more noble than attempting to defend your family, land, and friends against a large hostile aggressor. The overarching principles are admirable, even though the actual fighting won't exactly be pleasant. The french resistance did nothing short of miracle work, even though it involved killing as many Nazi party members as possible (yep, I just brought Godwin's law into the fray biggrin )

Those are my thoughts, I'm not necessarily disagreeing with the points you laid out.
Posted By: TankHunter

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:50 PM

Originally Posted By: Peally
Originally Posted By: TankHunter
Originally Posted By: radicaldude1234



And not a single person would buy it, excepting some very mentally disturbed people that would get a big kick out of it. Games aren't the place for sob stories about humanity and no one is going to learn a damn thing from something that over the top, other than wondering why they wasted 60 bucks on it.


I'm not saying that you necessarily make games like that, though I can think of one that apparently tried to show the horrors of it (Spec Ops: The Line). But what I am saying is that media in general glosses over these truths. For society I don't think that is good. Especially when there are so many who feel that war is something to be used to "right" moral wrongs but who never get to see the blunt immorality of the act itself.
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 05:57 PM

I see what you're saying, but I don't necessarily see it as a bad thing myself. It's subjective; an all or nothing approach is simply silly and lazy. There are places for education on the real world and there are places for having fun.
Posted By: Kontakt5

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 06:03 PM

Originally Posted By: Peally


I would disagree that defensive wars aren't noble. There isn't anything much more noble than attempting to defend your family, land, and friends against a large hostile aggressor. The overarching principles are admirable, even though the actual fighting won't exactly be pleasant. The french resistance did nothing short of miracle work, even though it involved killing as many Nazi party members as possible (yep, I just brought Godwin's law into the fray biggrin )



Nobility and necessity aren't the same thing- it's necessary to defend oneself, in and of itself, nobility is something else, it represents an ideal. That comes from the past, and typically from the Romantic age, in fact, in order to understand the basis for Nazism, one should understand idealists like Fichte and the Romantic age of writers who looked to the past- kingdoms, simple peasant life, rolling countrysides with castles and held that in esteem over the modern age. As an ideal, that doesn't really compare to industrial scale warfare. It's portraying something in quaint terms when the reality of it doesn't resemble that at all.

Look at the current civil war in Syria- whomever is defending themselves in that war, whatever case is made for the "defender", they die and look just as mangled and anonymous in death as the "aggressor", or like any other combatant in any other war.




Posted By: Urban Furball

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 06:04 PM

Originally Posted By: marko1231123
I was speaking to a friend of mine today, Its his sons birthday on Saturday
I am going to get his son a computer game for his birthday.
So I asked my friend what type of Games does his son like, to which my mate replied anything accept a war game
I asked why, He replied war games glorifies war. my point to him was if anything they show how lethal modern Weapons and combat is and how futile war is. He countered this argument with how many war games show in detail
What happens to a human being when he is hit with a bullet or blown up set on fire. (A Valid point) the discussion went on for a while. We agreed to disagree on the subject.
I will of course respect His wishes and not get his son a military type game.
This is probably the wrong place to post this,
But do you guys think there is any validity in his argument.



Answering your question as asked, without explaining the whole Encyclopaedia Britannica ....


My opinion

Yes
Posted By: Alicatt

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 06:32 PM

Originally Posted By: marko1231123

Your statement is correct.
I was amazed to find out that British private schools used to keep arsenals of weapons
So they could train the next generation of officers and you were basically guaranteed a commission
If you went through that system. (not sure if they still do)
They did when I was at school but that was about 40 years ago. The male children of my cousins had drill instruction and live fire on ranges when they were at school, they went on to be officers in the army just like their fathers.

I joined the ATC, (Air Training Corps) when I was about 14 and we got live fire on the local range with .303 Lee Enfields, I also shot indoor .22 with .303 Lee Enfields with a .22 rim fire conversion at the local police range. My father was the squadron marksman when in the RAF during WW2 and was sent to Bisley to shoot. Part of his duties along side of his trade was to dispose of un-exploded weapons by shooting at it.
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 06:56 PM

Originally Posted By: Kontakt5
Originally Posted By: Peally

<post>


Nobility and necessity aren't the same thing- it's necessary to defend oneself, in and of itself, nobility is something else, it represents an ideal. That comes from the past, and typically from the Romantic age, in fact, in order to understand the basis for Nazism, one should understand idealists like Fichte and the Romantic age of writers who looked to the past- kingdoms, simple peasant life, rolling countrysides with castles and held that in esteem over the modern age. As an ideal, that doesn't really compare to industrial scale warfare. It's portraying something in quaint terms when the reality of it doesn't resemble that at all.

Look at the current civil war in Syria- whomever is defending themselves in that war, whatever case is made for the "defender", they die and look just as mangled and anonymous in death as the "aggressor", or like any other combatant in any other war.


The Syrian civil war is two fanatical nutbar sides doing what nutbars do, hardly a clear cut conflict of an aggressor versus a defender. I'm thinking of an ideal basic defensive scenario, such as Germany out of the blue attempting to roll over France for no better reason than "I want that". To not resist in some way would be more ignoble than to fight. It is both noble as an ideal and as a necessity regardless of the conventional weaponry used.

Noble: having or showing fine personal qualities or high moral principles and ideals

Regardless, I think I've gone off on a tangent enough here wink
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 06:57 PM

Originally Posted By: Alicatt
Originally Posted By: marko1231123

Your statement is correct.
I was amazed to find out that British private schools used to keep arsenals of weapons
So they could train the next generation of officers and you were basically guaranteed a commission
If you went through that system. (not sure if they still do)
They did when I was at school but that was about 40 years ago. The male children of my cousins had drill instruction and live fire on ranges when they were at school, they went on to be officers in the army just like their fathers.

I joined the ATC, (Air Training Corps) when I was about 14 and we got live fire on the local range with .303 Lee Enfields, I also shot indoor .22 with .303 Lee Enfields with a .22 rim fire conversion at the local police range. My father was the squadron marksman when in the RAF during WW2 and was sent to Bisley to shoot. Part of his duties along side of his trade was to dispose of un-exploded weapons by shooting at it.


How times have changed. I wish I had that kind of opportunity to learn as a kid.
Posted By: radicaldude1234

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 07:01 PM

Originally Posted By: Peally
Originally Posted By: TankHunter
Originally Posted By: radicaldude1234



And not a single person would buy it, excepting some very mentally disturbed people that would get a big kick out of it. Games aren't the place for sob stories about humanity and no one is going to learn a damn thing from something that over the top, other than wondering why they wasted 60 bucks on it.


Doesn't that say something about the subject matter at hand, though?

As per David Grossman's book on the subject from which I'm paraphrasing (hopefully correctly), killing, even in warfare, is an act that is so wholly unnatural to human behavior that prior to Vietnam, only one in four of all soldiers involved in any conflict would fire at the enemy with the intention of killing. With the other 3/4ths being the same people who would not hesitate to run into a hail of bullets to save their buddies.

Now, I'm not condemning milsims as "murder simulators" like your local bleeding heart activist, as I am a somewhat avid fan of said sims, in the same way I partake in alcohol and the occasional cigar. The difference, though is that the risks of the latter two are well publicized.

In the end, games are just mostly for entertainment, but I feel that it would be awfully cavalier of us to brush off and chalk the possibility of whitewashing such a serious subject matter to artistic license. Especially for games where the term "most realistic" is featured liberally in their marketing campaigns.

War isn't a paintball game where your opponents fall down like they're shot by tranquilizer darts. People die in war...terribly...in ways they don't deserve. Yes, it's also filled with glitzy excitement, bright explosions, and heroic deeds, but I just feel that any celebration of these should be tinged with the notion that any war; no matter how righteous, justified, or necessary it is; should be viewed as a tragedy. Lest we grow too fond of it.

Besides, think of the children!

Originally Posted By: Jedi Master
I think the opening 20 mins of Saving Pvt Ryan is a very good intro to what real combat can be like as opposed to the silliness of a COD, MOH, or other video game. Grim necessity, pain, futility, and death. No glory, no cheering, no BOOYAH!, no teabagging.
If all a kid sees is COD, I can picture them thinking that hey, real war can't be that bad?
If a kid sees the assault on Omaha Beach, even a Hollywood-ized version of it, how can they think it's NOT?
COD today is just what Q3A was over 10 years ago with the veneer of authentic military forces.
The Jedi Master


Agreed. Entertainment value aside, I think that its entirely possible, an extremely dangerous, for us as a society to develop a skewed perspective on when to employ violence to solve our problems.

I also recommend the TV movie "When Trumpets Fade", which depicts the meat grinder that was the Battle of Hurtgen Forest.
Posted By: marko1231123

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 07:03 PM

Originally Posted By: Alicatt
Originally Posted By: marko1231123

Your statement is correct.
I was amazed to find out that British private schools used to keep arsenals of weapons
So they could train the next generation of officers and you were basically guaranteed a commission
If you went through that system. (not sure if they still do)
They did when I was at school but that was about 40 years ago. The male children of my cousins had drill instruction and live fire on ranges when they were at school, they went on to be officers in the army just like their fathers.

I joined the ATC, (Air Training Corps) when I was about 14 and we got live fire on the local range with .303 Lee Enfields, I also shot indoor .22 with .303 Lee Enfields with a .22 rim fire conversion at the local police range. My father was the squadron marksman when in the RAF during WW2 and was sent to Bisley to shoot. Part of his duties along side of his trade was to dispose of un-exploded weapons by shooting at it.




There were weapons in my school as well.
But you got expelled if you were if caught with them. LoL
All joking aside
I Can see the logic from a militaristic nation like the UK.
Sort of like the Spartans agoge,


Edit, when I was very young six or seven.
I remember some army guys visiting my junior school.
They had decommissioned weapons and dummy grenades they let us hold the rifles and throw the grenades
I remember holding a sten gun I thought it was the coolest thing ever.
I have a friend who grew up in Yugoslavia in his last year of high school they were taught how the fire an assault Rifle and lay mines.
I wonder did this happen in other nations did the army visit your school?
Posted By: Kontakt5

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 07:05 PM

Originally Posted By: Peally
[


The Syrian civil war is two fanatical nutbar sides doing what nutbars do, hardly a clear cut conflict of an aggressor versus a defender. I'm thinking of an ideal basic defensive scenario, such as Germany out of the blue attempting to roll over France for no better reason than "I want that". To not resist in some way would be more ignoble than to fight. It is both noble as an ideal and as a necessity regardless of the conventional weaponry used.

Noble: having or showing fine personal qualities or high moral principles and ideals

Regardless, I think I've gone off on a tangent enough here wink


I think it's related to what we're talking about.

Noble refers to nobility- that's where that word comes from. It refers to the ideals and values of the aristocracy, which in the past, had its own sense of what that meant.

It seems that in the present, the word is often co-opted to mean anything of high value or esteem or importance in sort of idealistic terms.

But when you look at it, is defending your life really that? Or is it something existential? Let's say you are the member of the Tutsi tribe when the Hutus come over the hill and start slaughtering everyone. Defending yourselves doesn't really involve anything noble at all, you might use the same means to fence off the attacker as they are using to subdue your village. The film 300 of course idealizes and represents a certain image of the Spartans defending themselves, of course what it doesn't show is when it comes down to it, the Spartans weren't above clawing eyes out and biting or doing anything to murder an opponent.

Of course, war is sometimes couched in noble sentiments, that's an attempt to raise morale and get combatants to believe in the cause- everyone does this, Saddam's generals would do it the same as Soviet generals as North Korean generals or anyone else.

But the actual act of self defense- you would sooner not want to be under attack, but if you were, you're not really thinking like that at the moment. That's really what glorifying war does, it presents it in nobler sentiments.

Most computer games don't actually spend the time doing that. For the greater part, they focus on the action rather than on messages, whether explicit or more subtle.
Posted By: Smokin_Hole

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 07:23 PM

We live in the safest period in human history*. Your chances of meeting a violent end or of being kidnapped, raped or force to take arms are a fraction of what they were 1000 years ago. Is it a complete coincidence that this safe world exists at the very time that games and film are able to portray violence so vividly?

*Its true. Statistically we adults and our children have never been safer. Our intuition that the world is less safe or that children need to be constantly watched and protected are due to the preponderance of reporting in our media of rare events that are actually getting rarer.
Posted By: Peally

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 07:46 PM

Kontact I thought this might be the case and yes, I'm using the modern definition of noble (ignoring the idea of a nobility caste completely). And yes, unless it's a simple case of a literal bear defending itself from two wolves on a strategic level the defenders understand what's at stake should they fail, and it's quite noble to not cave in and let everyone become a statistic, regardless of what you need to do to survive. If the Spartans had been required to stab every enemy Persian in the eye with a pencil it doesn't affect the consequences and responsibilities of failure.

Smokin_Hole makes a pretty valid point. Mass media is skewing people to think the world is more dangerous than it is on top of everything else.
Posted By: Jedi Master

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 07:58 PM

Because when everything is sunshine and lollipops you don't find yourself glued to the TV/radio/news site for info on what's happening, you enjoy life.

That's bad for ratings/sales.



The Jedi Master
Posted By: Murphy

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 08:54 PM

Originally Posted By: Peally
Originally Posted By: Kontakt5
Originally Posted By: Peally

<post>


Nobility and necessity aren't the same thing- it's necessary to defend oneself, in and of itself, nobility is something else, it represents an ideal. That comes from the past, and typically from the Romantic age, in fact, in order to understand the basis for Nazism, one should understand idealists like Fichte and the Romantic age of writers who looked to the past- kingdoms, simple peasant life, rolling countrysides with castles and held that in esteem over the modern age. As an ideal, that doesn't really compare to industrial scale warfare. It's portraying something in quaint terms when the reality of it doesn't resemble that at all.

Look at the current civil war in Syria- whomever is defending themselves in that war, whatever case is made for the "defender", they die and look just as mangled and anonymous in death as the "aggressor", or like any other combatant in any other war.


The Syrian civil war is two fanatical nutbar sides doing what nutbars do, hardly a clear cut conflict of an aggressor versus a defender. I'm thinking of an ideal basic defensive scenario, such as Germany out of the blue attempting to roll over France for no better reason than "I want that". To not resist in some way would be more ignoble than to fight. It is both noble as an ideal and as a necessity regardless of the conventional weaponry used.

Noble: having or showing fine personal qualities or high moral principles and ideals

Regardless, I think I've gone off on a tangent enough here wink


Well said Peally, and necessary, IMHO.

Posted By: Kontakt5

Re: Are Military Sims glorifying War. - 04/04/14 09:17 PM

I'm not sentimental, so making war sound noble (i.e., sentimental) simply doesn't work on me. Sentiments don't move me, those things are all dressing up something, which is exactly what this topic about.


It's usually a matter of perspective- even the Germans when on the defensive towards the end of World War 2 were fighting for the existential survival of their state. This isn't a matter of being noble- you either had to fight, or you might have to surrender to the Red Army, or you might be executed if you didn't fight. When you see Hitler trying to galvanize young boys and old men to give their lives, he's going to be using the same sort of language in a do or die situation.

Truth be told, it's often more about circumstance than anything high sounding ideals.

Even in a cut and dried situation, suppose you're the bad guy and I'm the good guy coming to liberate the world from your tyranny, whatever the cost. You defending your country or your way of life begs the question as to what 'noble' means. It's about survival, not quaint ideals. Survival instincts (or hatred of the enemy) and nobility are two distinct things.

I recognize the value of propaganda, however- in as much as you want to get people to follow your words and rally them, you certainly would speak of war in those terms, otherwise, you're not really ready to get the people involved in your war.
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