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Torture in Gaming

Wired has a thoughtful piece on torture in gaming. They're for it, for some interesting reasons, and I largely agree with them. Worth a read.

Making players confront moral choices makes for better gaming, and as a designer or DM, I like to see in-game decisions more difficult than "Should we loot the dragon's hoard now or set up a perimeter defense first?". So I've been looking at how these issues come up in RPGs, and mostly, they do make for some tough calls. I'll be curious to hear some WOW players' take on it.

I haven't watched 24 in years (it's sorta profoundly dumb), but is the writer really giving a fair view of the content? Maybe I need to watch Fox more often.


Dec. 28th, 2008 04:17 am (UTC)
They forgot to mention a vital aspect of the quest from WoW. The quest is part of a chain when you start a death knight, a thrall of the lich king, the big baddy of the expansion. You commit calculatingly awful tasks (against people who aren't that nice, so you don't feel *too* bad about it), until it finally becomes too much and you rebel and join the horde or alliance.

Interestingly, burning a church was never raised as an issue, nor is killing your own sibling or friend. The statement blizzard makes on torture is clear, if the quest is a bit silly at first. It's an awful act committed by awful people, an no heroic mind would abide by it.

I do agree with the author though, video games make a good vector for such topics.

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