This is exactly what I've been talking about for years.

The politicians and lawmakers and general video game haters can blame the games all they want. The ESRB ratings are there for a reason, titles like Grand Theft Auto V are not in any way designed – or marketed to – children, and if a kid ends up with a copy, the blame lies entirely with the parents or direct caregivers.

Check out this disturbing article posted over at Kotaku. It's from someone who works in a game store, and he said he sold a lot of copies of GTAV to parents who "just don't give a damn." In fact, he says he sold the game to parents with kids "who could barely see over the counter." This is the crux of the problem. This is why we have people wondering what sort of effects a game like GTAV can have on kids.

As far as I'm concerned, we don't need to wonder; the effects are guaranteed to be detrimental. That's because the game wasn't made for children, and the entire video game industry never once intended it to be played by children. It's not marketed toward kids, it has the big fat "M" (Mature) rating on the box with plenty of information attached to it, and nobody at Rockstar or Take-Two is purposely trying to corrupt our youth. They're not making a game for our youth; they're making a game for adults. Just like any filmmaker makes a violent movie and doesn't mean for it to be seen by children.

It's the number of clueless parents that has always concerned me. It almost seems as if a shocking majority of parents aren't qualified to be parents. It doesn't take more than a few minutes to do a bit of research online; you'd find out very quickly that GTAV isn't a game for your 8-year-old. And if you think it doesn't matter, if you think your kid can "handle it," you're disqualified to be a caregiver of young, developing individuals. End of story.

Related Game(s): Grand Theft Auto V

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godsman
godsman
7 years ago

I believe that the realistic games will prep the next generation to commit crimes. How many times have you heard that ppl are familiar with a vehicle from a flight/driving simulator? Im sure if the COD group is given a gun, they will br familiar with it to some degree. Now if the 8year olds are playing GTA V about robbing banks. Im sure they'll gain some knowledge of how to do so. So the proper parental guidance is needed to remind them of reality. Which in this case, theres none.


Last edited by godsman on 9/23/2013 1:34:29 PM

MRSUCCESS
MRSUCCESS
7 years ago

You cannot do anything but blame the parents. They buy the game without knowing the ratings and without knowing the game.

Also, common sense is not as common as it should be. I played MGS1 around 10-11 years old back in 1998 and I didn't go out in the streets with a FAMAS shooting everyone up.

It all starts with upbringing and communication between parents and their children.

Akuma_
Akuma_
7 years ago

I think they know the ratings, they just don't care.

Masszt3r
Masszt3r
7 years ago

The "I killed hookers in GTA III when I was five and I turned out fine" kind of comments make me even more sick. I'm no psychologist, but… really? Don't go around and apply the same logic to everyone. I grew up playing GTA III, unbeknownst to my parents of course, and it may sound hypocritical from my part, but it's not something I would EVER let a child do; people don't see and process things the same way.

The media are quick to blame developers when it's clearly bad parenting that needs to take the heat. Oh, modern times.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
7 years ago

Yeah I wouldn't let my kids do half the sh*t I did.

godsman
godsman
7 years ago

You just need one crazy Guy Like in the boston marathon bombing. "If" he were say I saw it from GTA. Then what would happen? Can you really blame the media?

Now theres many more stories inbetween where the the kids have excess swearing and violence. So the conclusion is that it GTA made a nrgative impact

Akuma_
Akuma_
7 years ago

@godsman

That has already happened, in many cases, every time some one murders someone else, if there is ANY link between the murderer and video games it will immediately be drawn into the spotlight and blamed as the reason for the crime.

Brighat
Brighat
7 years ago

Grand Theft Auto V should not be, in any way, played by anybody younger than 16. This game has a lot of graphic sex. In Grand Theft Auto IV, they kept it discreet but in V, they are showing it in its full glory. I did not think that video of the 11 year-old kid in France getting the game was poignant but irresponsible and tasteless.

Violence, well, kids already play a lot of these military shooters. We're not going to change that. It's the drug use, sex acts and adult situations that make this game not for kids.

Sadly, there are less and less games suitable for 10 year-old boys. My nephew has tons of sports games, driving games and Kinect but it's getting harder and harder to find anything suitable for him to play on his Xbos 360. There's no Puppeteer or Sly 4 on his console.

I kind of liked GTA IV's entertainment more. I liked that magician and that songstress in IV over the movie theaters in V.

SirLoin of Beef
SirLoin of Beef
7 years ago

"Sadly, there are less and less games suitable for 10 year-old boys."

That is one of the biggest issues with the video game industry, in my opinion. It's great that it's making mature games for adult players but the titles suitable for kids aren't nearly as plentiful.

johnld
johnld
7 years ago

thats what nintendo is for… theyre basically the games for the who family type company. you cant really say that theres barely any games for younger people because thats what nintendo has been doing. there are suitable games for all ages and most of the time, parents wont pay attention. more often than not, if a kid wants a ps3 or 360, theyre already thinking they want to play violent games with their friends because those games are the most visible for those systems. granted the playstation catalog has a bunch of family friendly games. xbox not so much since cod, halo, and gears are the games the system pushes constantly. if a kid asks their parents for a ps3 or 360, it wont be because they saw a kid friendly game that they just have to have.

Simcoe
Simcoe
7 years ago

I wonder how many parents are fine with the in-game shooting, killing and torturing but will have a conniption fit once they learn that their little angel can get a topless lap-dance at the local strip club.

LegendaryWolfeh
LegendaryWolfeh
7 years ago

At the midnight launch, there were plenty of parents who were there to buy the games for their kids. It's just insane, they know nothing about what they're buying for their kid and they just don't care. I can guarantee that 100% knew nothing about the strip clubs in the game, or even how the game works at all.

Cuetes
Cuetes
7 years ago

Buying GTA V for your kid is like beating them just to do it. You are almost guaranteed to mess him/her up for life, and you deserved to have them taken away.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
7 years ago

I think this problem comes from parents defaulting on their responsibilities in most parts of life and letting their kids have whatever they want just to shut em up.

Why? So they can go out to bars and party with their friends of course, because that's more important than the health of the family apparently.


Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 9/23/2013 2:23:04 PM

Jawknee
Jawknee
7 years ago

Yup…it's cheap easy way around a babysitter or actually parenting. It's easier to just give them what they want to get them to be quiet. I don't let my kids play games yet. I don't even play in front of them unless its a quick Mario session to reward them for a good deed. Even TV is limited to the occasional Care Bears Movie and nature shows. Just finished watching Amazing Planet. 🙂

Akuma_
Akuma_
7 years ago

There are definitely better ways to occupy your child then let them play violent video games.

I was brought up to be able to look after myself, spent a lot of time baby sitting myself as a kid. Yeah I did play video games, but games weren't really violent till I was a teenager anyway, but I played GTA from a young age and it never affected me. I guess it was probably because I was a very mature kid.

Which once again goes back to the parenting thing, if parents were able to teach their children to be mature about things like that, it wouldn't be as much of an issue.


Last edited by Akuma_ on 9/23/2013 9:01:15 PM

shadowpal2
shadowpal2
7 years ago

It is pretty sick…and I remember unfortunately being one of those kids back when GTA: Vice City came out. I asked my dad to buy it for me, and he did so without really knowing what kind of game it was.

He later took a good look at the box afterwards and felt really bad buying it for me and I remember him asking me clearly "Why would you trick me?" …well at least the fortunate part is that…honestly I didn't turn out to be a psychopath who would go guns blazing into a mall and think it's fun to run over people in cars while listening to "EVERYBODY'S WORKING FOR THE WEEKEND."

When I look at a game like this – I find it as a great way to actually vent any anger one may experience through the day. Honestly, instead of keeping it to yourself or going insane on parents, friends, or peers…do it all in GTA – and you'll calm down just like that.

Fortunately after I got GTA: Vice City, I remember going for more child-like fantasy games such as Sonic Heroes and Kingdom Hearts – I can tell you that I had much more of an imaginative experience with those two games than anything else.

…can anyone point me the games which a child can play this generation thats on Playstation or Xbox? I feel like it's a question quite frequently posed this generation…but honestly – I see nothing but M games coming out. …should kids really just stick with Nintendo?

johnld
johnld
7 years ago

try the hd remakes of jak and daxter, sly games, ratchet and clank. cart racing games are simple and fun. but frankly, as long as you do your part to educate the child on the subject matter like violence, that should be fine. of course there are definite exceptions like gta where you have to agree for me to beat the hell out of you before youre allowed to let the child play it.

TrueAssassin86x
TrueAssassin86x
7 years ago

*slow golf clap*

about damn time someone posts something like this for news. It aint the kids falt it aint the people who sells the games its the parents of the kids. I have a older lady friend on Psn who has a kid thats like 10 the kid has his own account besides his moms account. his mom lets him play call of duty & GTA 5 I mean seriously wth. parents like this should be shot at

BigT_1980
BigT_1980
7 years ago

I know I shouldn't joke, maybe their dumb-asses will get shot by their own kids. I seriously hope that doesn't happen, but parents like these disgust me. I would have a hard time working at Gamestop or any other video game store, if a parent came in and requested to purchase a game like this. If I knew exactly what content the game had in it I would tell them in great detail.

***Spoiler Alert***

I would be very descriptive about what is in the game (such as in GTA V the anal sex scene in game, and the and topless dancers. Also they very realistic death scenes.) I haven't gotten very far as of yet, but this is some of the things I seen so far.

booze925
booze925
7 years ago

Expertly written and thoughtful.
Why is THIS not being circulated through Fox news or any other mainstream media outlet?

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
7 years ago

That would mean people had to look at themselves for a change instead of blaming some outside thing that scares them. Can't report that YOU might be the problem.

Akuma_
Akuma_
7 years ago

That almost never happens around here. Ahaha.

johnld
johnld
7 years ago

well, for one thing…. it is fox news……….

anjpikapp3
anjpikapp3
7 years ago

Hahahahaha!!!! best part is…these so called "parents" would blame the EVERYTHING ELSE but themselves when their child brings a weapon to school and starts killing all their "bullies."

What needs to happen is the same thing for booze or smokes…if/when you contribute to a minor, YOU GO TO JAIL.


Last edited by anjpikapp3 on 9/23/2013 3:08:05 PM

Jawknee
Jawknee
7 years ago

Why don't these store clerks simply refuse to sell to them?

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
7 years ago

Because they can sell anything with parental consent.

Not saying that such laws are the answer but at this rate, we may have to pass a law that saves kids from their own parents.

Jawknee
Jawknee
7 years ago

What I mean is these stores still have a right to refuse service to people. If its obvious the game sale is intended for the kid, they can simply refuse to sell it. No new laws should be require, simply stores taking a stand.


Last edited by Jawknee on 9/23/2013 3:58:00 PM

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
7 years ago

So long as they want to sell as many copies of a game as possible, that'll never happen.

Jawknee
Jawknee
7 years ago

You're right of course but maybe if enough parents like me take a stand and start demanding these stores take some responsibility. Gotta start somewhere I think. Funny, I may try something.

Go to my local GameStop. Ask for a copy of GTAV and when they ask for my ID, I'll tell me its for my kid and see what they do. 🙂

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
7 years ago

I would think the proper thing to do as a business would be to at least educate the parents that are buying the game. It could go a long ways because Im sure some parents just dont know. The trailer for GTA5 doesn't suggest there violence, sex, or the ever occuring F-bomb. Sure theres a rating at the end but thats about the time the mind pays no more attention.

Anyways it could hinder a sale but if the parent doesnt know what they are permitting too, its the same as selling to the child in my opinion. Of course maybe its up to the parent to educate themselves.

Akuma_
Akuma_
7 years ago

I remember when my local blockbuster prevented me from hiring a game because I was under age.

It has never happened since.

All the liquor stores have taken such a strong stance against adults buying liquor for children so games stores should too.

I think bigrailer19 is right, the best way is that if you see an adult buying a game where you believe the child may be playing it, is to educate them on the content of the game by simply saying "Are you aware that the game is rated R18 and is not suitable for use by a minor".


Last edited by Akuma_ on 9/23/2013 9:35:06 PM

Huckle_Cat
Huckle_Cat
7 years ago

It's just plain difficult to enforce, just as buying liquor for minors can be depending on where you live. In Texas, minors can accompany adults into liquor stores. How do you judge whether an adult is buying for the kid or not? There are certainly ways to know, but the mere presence of the kid does not mean it's being bought for him.

I remember being amused that when I bought GTAIV, the GameStop employee did make an effort to determine whether I was buying it for me or for my son, who was 10 at the time and with me in the store. I am a woman in my late 40s so I can see why he thought I must be buying it for my kid, though I am an avid gamer and was in fact buying it for myself. I did thank him for trying to make sure.

However, I think it's difficult to ask minimum wage employees to risk the wrath of their customers and essentially accuse them of being terrible parents (even if they are). It's not always obvious, and I agree with the other poster who asked how the writer of the Kotaku piece knew that the game was being bought for the kids who could barely see over the counter. If that same GS employee had refused to sell me GTAIV because he didn't believe I was going to be the one playing it, I can assure you I would have been pretty pissed.

In the event that it *is* clear (such as the parent saying something like, "you can't play this until your homework is done"), I would agree with requiring employees to say, "I am not allowed to sell this game knowing that it is going to be played by an underage child." Although the parent can still find a way to buy the game, it might be a signal to the clueless (as opposed to outright stupid) ones.

SonyPuppy
SonyPuppy
7 years ago

With the new R18+ rating (which GTAV has, purely for the Drug Use according to the box and not the copious sex, violence and swearing) here in Australia, it is actually a requirement of the rating.
If we believe that an R game is being purchased by an adult for a child we are required to refuse to sell it to them. It's not just a case of get mummy or daddy to buy it for you.
Admittedly, this is very hard to enforce unless the kid and parent make it obvious in front of you.
If we are caught selling R rated games to parents giving them to minors, I'm pretty sure we get fined, not the parents. So it's in our best interests to make sure it's not going to underage gamers.

CrusaderForever
CrusaderForever
7 years ago

There a lot of dumb people in the world. They will get their comeuppance. Just wait until these kids that get to play all of these M Rated games become teenagers! Yikes!

H0TSHELLZ
H0TSHELLZ
7 years ago

I can vouch for this due to the AMOUNT of ADULT CONTENT, kids should NOT play the story line of the game.

Jalex
Jalex
7 years ago

"It almost seems as if a shocking majority of parents aren't qualified to be parents."
Sadly, I would say such is the case.

Honestly, I think a lot of this comes not only from parental neglect, but a specific type of ignorance. Many people (even some young people) still think of video games as a child's toy, much in the way 'comic books' have yet to really shake their image, despite so many of them going in dark, adult-oriented territory decades ago.
I actually had an experience with this recently at Best Buy. A woman was about to buy 'Grand Theft Auto V' for her son (who looked to be barely in his teens, if that), asking him if he was sure it was appropriate. Of course he said that it was, but I decided to intervene. I pointed out the descriptors on the back, she thanked me and said something to her son along the lines of "Maybe later." The boy shot me a death stare. Anyway, I think for certain parents they are just so ignorant (and I don't mean that in a necessarily insulting manner) when it comes to the medium that they don't realize what they are loading up their children's minds with.

airwedge1
airwedge1
7 years ago

Reverse evolution in progress. We have a planet full of idiots.

Jawknee
Jawknee
7 years ago

Ever see Idiocracy? It's proving prophetic.

Temjin001
Temjin001
7 years ago

We have a lot of irresponsible people who can procreate. This isn't just a video game problem but one where society has allowed itself to become something hideous. People want so bad to have rights and be free but they will lose it all by relinquishing any accountability at every turn. If the family unit fails to support society then society becomes a miserable hell hole.

Jawknee
Jawknee
7 years ago

Yup….well said.

Akuma_
Akuma_
7 years ago

For a long time I have believed that people should need to do IQ tests before being allowed to procreate.

All this talk about freedom and human rights is bullcrap if we ever want to improve as a race. I mean, in ANY kind of futuristic story, the one thing that is different 100% of the time is that the human race in that story is vastly superior in their beliefs and human rights than we are right now, and we are only showing signs of making it worse.


Last edited by Akuma_ on 9/23/2013 9:26:51 PM

Jawknee
Jawknee
7 years ago

Yea you lost me at "freedom is bullcrap". Sorry, people make terrible choices but I'm not even willing to entertain the idea of restricting people's right to make babies. You're dipping into a perverse form of totalitarianism

Snaaaake
Snaaaake
7 years ago

And we wonder how kids got their hands on GTA………..

johnld
johnld
7 years ago

we dont have to wonder. they idiotically post them on youtube or something proudly saying i made my kid happy.

fatelementality
fatelementality
7 years ago

and just where are the parents at this time?

…Playing video games.

BA DUM CHING!

PC_Max
PC_Max
7 years ago

My guess would be the parents that are buying the games for young ones are few compared to the percentage that are not. Mind you that depends in what country as well. Differing cultures may have differing views on the game and its content and I being a parent have a North American view as one. Specifically Canadian.

What interests me in the article is if Sellers knows the parent is buying the game for the kid who cannot see over the counter… why are they selling the game to them? Or are they just assuming they are. And the cover does not suggest anything to an 8 year old. Does it? Don't tell me that to the Seller its just business and the parent would just go somewhere else. Thats not a reason, just a poor excuse to not be equally responsible as the parent should be. Imagine if it was a gun and not a game. Sellers are responsible to who they sell the game to as are the buyers. Again, this is null if the Seller is just assuming it and has no proof. BUT if they knew, they are a–holes for selling the game.

And for the parents or caregivers walking in with or without kids and buying it for younger kids. I am sure there are a number of them out there… I'd like to see if there are really any statistics on that or if its even possible to put one together. Interesting and disturbing. But what can you do? Or do we start snitching on each other? Or form a video game police looking in peoples windows. Freedom and democracy can be a fickled thing. And it does protect the smart and the stupid. :/

And this has nothing to do with the so called game haters as this seems to ALWAYS come up. And I know its a sore issue that keeps going on. From what I have heard and seen, the majority that are being classified in that group are really only targeting specific themed games. The minority in that group… well, they need something to do and are usually the more vocal. The smaller you are the louder and more controversial you have to be to get attention to yourself.

Granted the selling of games to minors only feeds the debate regardless of who is selling it and who is buying and for who to play. We are all responsible here.

And I have seen sellers refuse a sale to a parent knowing the game was going to a kid. I hate to say this though, I am sure that happens less often than I would hope.

I told myself I would not get in to this issue again.. but just when you think you are out…. they pull you back in.

Keep playing! Do yo know where your kids?

Simcoe
Simcoe
7 years ago

I think all the retailer can do is inform the parent that such a game is not intended to be played by children.

PlatformGamerNZ
PlatformGamerNZ
7 years ago

totally agree and you know when i went down to get my ps4 day 1 pre order and peppeter i saw this by who looked to be 12 or 13 years old looking at the new splinter cell an R16 game and i was like seriously come no wander the games industry is getting a bad name.

well are things gunna get better idk doesn't look like and i'm trying to be optimistic here but it's hard to be when you people are like this not caring.

happy gaming =)

___________
___________
7 years ago

allot of people dont care because they grew up doing it themselves.
hell i remember when i was 6 staying up all night and morning during sleepovers playing the shooter revolution on PC.
even blade, such a cool movie!