I was sort of zoning on the couch watching the Mets/Phillies game, when the breaking news came in that Osama Bin Laden had been killed. Then I watched as the news swept the stadium and chants of "U-S-A, U-S-A" erupted. This was followed by President Obama's address, which placed official closure on the infamous terrorist's death at the hands of U.S. special forces and CIA operatives.

And although it certainly seems trivial in the larger scope of reality, I started to look back at the past ten years since 9/11, and see how Bin Laden's fatal order impacted absolutely everything in this country…and that includes video games. While the effect is more subtle, it's still evident and intriguing. Perhaps above all else, gaming came under a bigger microscope as Americans became much more sensitive to particular matters. You may recall the Six Days in Fallujah project (eventually dropped by Konami ), which raised the ire of many, despite featuring a staff with willing American service members.

But there were other rumors before that about potential video games centering on the war on terror, and one of the most popular launched just last year. Medal of Honor turned out to be a quality shooter based on the War on Terror, but the game was surrounded by controversy. The first was the outcry involving multiplayer, where before the game released, the Taliban would've been one of the sides; that would mean players would have to assume the role of the Taliban (i.e., the "bad guys") when playing competitively online. EA dropped the name before the title hit store shelves. But in general, Danger Close's project remained embroiled in controversy.

But perhaps the most interesting impact Bin Laden and Al Qaeda had on this industry happened behind the scenes. How many designers had to consider what might be deemed "inappropriate" when brainstorming a shooter, especially military in nature? Or on the flip side – and this is even more interesting – how did developers embrace our new-found solidarity as a nation? As Obama said last night, the country banded together and turned our attention to that which matters most after 9/11, and the term "hero" took on a whole new dimension. We always play as heroes in our interactive adventures. But the definition of "hero" has changed in the past decade, and I think that has been seen (in some respects) in games.

Terrorism was (and is) very real. Walking through the airport and gunning down innocents in Modern Warfare 2 was uncomfortable for a reason that hits very close to home. It's more important than ever to carefully distinguish between fiction and reality and as gaming becomes closer to photo-realism and virtual reality with every passing day, it's crucial that we remember who we are, and where "the line" might be. Perhaps that is Bin Laden's single biggest impact on video games: we'll always be looking for that line with the aforementioned microscope, and every last developer and publisher will have to understand that. Gamers have to understand it, too.

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TheHighlander
TheHighlander
9 years ago

I'm thinking that the biggest impact was on the sales of modern era shooters where you can take on terrorists in a simulated Afghanistan or Iraq. Without the central boogey man, perhaps there will be fewer such games?

Oh nos! Does that mean that the shooter bubble may burst at last?!

Joy!


Last edited by TheHighlander on 5/2/2011 12:17:20 PM

NoSmokingBandit
NoSmokingBandit
9 years ago

There will always be a war somewhere to turn into a game. During the cold war all of the bad guys were Russian (terribly obvious in 007 films), and now the bad guys are from the middle-east. Korea next?

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

LOL! Highlander!

main_event05
main_event05
9 years ago

I'm sure they could've made some middle east based RPGs.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

That would be… weird.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

And boring to look at.

main_event05
main_event05
9 years ago

yea, but c'mon. then you could brag to all your friends that you have a lvl 57 infidel.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

LOL!

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Well, Final Fantasy used to have Ifrit, that's a middle eastern critter.

kraygen
kraygen
9 years ago

I'd rather brag that I killed a level 57 Infidel.

=)

N_C
N_C
9 years ago

@ Jawknee
Yeah especially boring because their digusting heathens who practice a pagan religion and pray to the wrong god AND sometimes have multiple wives AND don't dress the same as Americans….man oh man…0-5 eh Jawk?

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

Back of N_C, in this case he's clearly referring to the environment. What the hell is wrong with you that you're trying to incite a flame war between yourself and Jawknee in this thread? He took offense to your Chairman Mao avatar, and now you see fit to attack every single post he's made? You're acting like a child.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

It's okay Lawless, let him post his nonsense…it will only make watching him get banned all the sweeter.


Last edited by Jawknee on 5/2/2011 2:08:20 PM

main_event05
main_event05
9 years ago

Then Ben can brag that he banned a lvl 3 commie.

And because World brought up Ifrit, I think we need to have a moment of silence for what Final Fantasy used to be.


Last edited by main_event05 on 5/2/2011 5:14:01 PM

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
9 years ago

I think Ben needs to bring out his "Troll, be gone" spray once again…..

If you look at N_C's profile, it becomes very apparent that he's just out to harass Jawknee.

Just look at what he's put down as his location, why else would he write in….. Jawknee's house???

YashaZz
YashaZz
9 years ago

What's wrong with "commies"?

Anyway, a middle-eastern set RPG… very hard to imagine.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Funny I found myself thinking the same thing what with the surge of military shooters lately and the relatively recent acceptance of modern settings for war games.

A well written piece Ben, I know that we all walk a fine line in our hobby of choice and as I wrote recently (http://www.titanreviews.com/#/la-noire-good-guy/4550964364)I hope L.A. Noire brings back our love of the benevolent hero opposed to the human weapon or criminal.

It feels weird to be happy over the death of a person, but patriotism and want of vengeance are powerful things; things which I'm sure we will continue to explore through the medium of video games.


Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 5/2/2011 12:23:28 PM

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

"vengeance" you mean Justice. 😉

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
9 years ago

The thing is Worlds, to most people (and I feel a bit of this myself) Bin Laden was not so much a person as a figurehead or concept that embodied the evil perpetrated on 9/11. As a result the death of this terrorist/war criminal/inhuman individual has less impact than the death of others. To some extent his own actions and profile have de-humanized him. I'm not saying that from a purely moral point of view that in any way excused joy at the death of another. But I would suggest that people would hardly feel regret in place of relief, or even happiness at the death of other infamous leaders/terrorists/war criminals of past history. I dare say that much of the joy is really the ending of that chapter and the relief that it's over.

I'll not name names, but I know of individuals from history (even in the last two centuries) who I would have been happy to see the end of.

frostface
frostface
9 years ago

You shouldn't feel happy about the death of a person World. And Jawknee, were's the justice?

I respect that this is a predominately US site with predominately US members, so I don't want to out-right disrespect the community, by sharing my in some ways opposing views of the last few hours, since the Obama announcement.

All I'll ask is, were's the justice when your men and women are still fighting and dying in a war they went into under false pretenses? Where is the justice for all the families of the people of Iraq, Afghanistan that have borne the brunt of the US led occupation? I have a whole bunch of other questions which out of respect I won't put to you guys.

But I do believe this 'justice' and celebration of the death of one man, who no doubt now will be idolized by his followers (and there are no shortage of them), is a premature celebration.
Maybe you should hold off until your loved ones are back on US soil. That'll be a day for celebrating don't ya think?


Last edited by frostface on 5/2/2011 12:43:48 PM

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

I'm more than informed on the matters, I suppose what I'm getting at is that it is a time for everyone to question themselves. We saw celebration in the streets over there when 9/11 happened and were appalled. I wonder how we will be perceived now with our celebrations?

Don't get me wrong, I'm glad the f*cker is eating dinner with Hitler, but we should always keep an eye on what we stand for and our moral justifications, lest we descend into the realm where that dead man now occupies either in the hereafter or in history.


Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 5/2/2011 1:14:34 PM

maxpontiac
maxpontiac
9 years ago

I for one am glad OBL is dead. Yes, that is harsh, yes, as Jawknee stated, it is Justice. Individuals such as him deserve to die. I do not want my taxes to pay for some ridiculous trial.

I also have three family members in region as we speak. One is in Afghanistan, the other is in Iraq, and one is in Turkey. I have yet to speak with them since OBL has been dead, but I I am sure there is a sense of accomplishment.

Maybe you should hold off on making judgmental statements such as the one you posted!! From where I stand, you have already insulted me, my family, and every one out there serving this country!

How do you think the families of the 3000 people who lost a loved one think? I bet they are happy. I know that two wrongs don't make a right, but sometimes sitting around and discussing things in a "civilized" manner won't get you anywhere.

If it takes a bullet to the brain of one terrorist to show America's resolve. So be it.


Last edited by maxpontiac on 5/2/2011 1:18:27 PM

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
9 years ago

I totally get that point worlds. believe me, I am one of the first to start talking about not wanting to be like the thing we hate when it comes to such matters. That's why Gitmo and all the things that went on following 9/11 still worry the living daylights out of me. I thought we were better than all of that. but I guess it was expedient, and to many, that mattered more than doing or being right. I don't believe that there is ever a reason to become that which you hate, to do it to them because they do it to us – so to speak. Clearly a nation defends itself, but that doesn't mean it has to use techniques one would normally attribute to those we fight against.

And now I shall end my moralizing rant. All I really want to get across is that we should be better than we are, and we must not become that which we hate.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Maxpontiac, did I offend or did frostface? In any case it isn't my intention to do so.

frostface
frostface
9 years ago

@maxpontiac, that you feel my intent was to insult you or your family members serving over seas, sadden's me. For that insult I will apologize. You either didn't completely read my post or passed judgement without understanding my post.

Should I go to the bother of explaining it more clearly for you, draw out a debate which I don't feel is warranted on a gaming website because of my inability to convey were I was initially coming from?

I don't want to be part of a society that celebrates the death of anyone. I also wouldn't want to see my loved ones fighting a war not knowing if they'll ever make it back home alive or in one piece. I also don't see were it's worth celebrating one man's death with a war still ongoing. Too many people on both sides of the fence dying and I'm sure my disrespectful words aren't all as disrespectful as you think if you yourself were in the fight.

@world I think it was me insulted him, not intentionally I would like to emphasis.


Last edited by frostface on 5/2/2011 1:49:50 PM

Underdog15
Underdog15
9 years ago

I mentioned in another thread I thought it was sad when we celebrate a death. I said I'm glad a major threat was taken care of, but to get to the point where we celebrate a death… must be a sad back story.

I got called out on my comment for saying I wept for his soul. But let me explain what I mean…

What sort of life would have led a person to get to the point where he did all the terrible things he did?

I find the whole thing tragic. With all his abilities and charisma, he could have been so much more. Yet, for whatever reason, he revelled in committing atrocities that led to people celebrating his death.

Why couldn't he have been a good leader? What made him act and lead the way he did? What caused him to justify his acts?

I find the whole story tragic. When you think of it that way, it is a little sad. It's not like he was a murderer from birth. Something happened. I don't know what. But something. And the long story that led him to having his death celebrated is likely a sad and tragic one that, I for one, wish had been different for so many people's sakes.

The saddest part of all is that he probably died thinking he was a hero. He likely never realized how wrong he was. He likely never had the chance to understand how wrong and evil he had behaved.

That is why I weap. It suggests that not everyone can be redeemed… That there is a point of no return. And that is depressing.


Last edited by Underdog15 on 5/2/2011 1:57:43 PM

Underdog15
Underdog15
9 years ago

Also, don't forget this fact:

Not forgiving those atrocities doesn't hurt Osama or his followers. It, in fact, makes our ability to move on more difficult.

Don't give them the satisfaction of owning your grudges. Holding onto hatred means he owns you from the grave. I hope the US is able to become larger people, stop celebrating deaths, and learn how to move on as stronger people. (which I KNOW you will, but still… it's a hope I have for you guys)

maxpontiac
maxpontiac
9 years ago

World – Not you man!

Frostface –

I understood your post and where you were coming from, but seriously, what did you expect? You mention that I should hold my excitement on this issue and I don't understand that viewpoint one bit. I see this as one more step taken in the right direction to bringing our military home. Plus, everyone of my cousins is over there out of choice. The two in Iraq and Afghanistan re-upped when their service expired. Why do you think that is?

Believe me, our family cried and had many sleepless nights when they were deployed into a combat zone for the first time. However, when the 2nd, 3rd, etc. time came around things were much easier because of our understanding on why they were doing this and why it had to be done. Even if there is a grey line on whether it's right or wrong really isn't the point. Why? These men and women deserve our unwavering support.

Brother, just because I am not personally carrying an M4 and eating MRE's does that make me any less involved in "the fight". Having loved ones abroad is a battle and sacrifice all in itself. There isn't day that goes by that I am not on my knees praying for them. There isn't a month that goes by in which letters and care packages aren't sent.

Statements just like the one you posted frustrate me, and I will apologize for any brash behavior on my part. In the mean time, you'll have to forgive me if I get excited (and proud) over the death of a maniacal and sick terrorist who contributed to altering the lives of countless thousands!!


Last edited by maxpontiac on 5/2/2011 3:03:48 PM

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
9 years ago

frostface: You're over-complicating the issue, as far too many do.

Bin Laden is, essentially, evil. He has no purpose on this earth; his only purpose has been to hurt other people at the adolescent glorification of his own misguided ego. His life is pointless and worse, counterproductive to the good of humanity.

Killing him doesn't erase problems or pain. But it sure as hell doesn't mean we've lost anything of value, either.

frostface
frostface
9 years ago

Like I said Max, I meant no offence. Your family members are fighting for your country. I don't share the same patriotism as it's not my countries fight. So I hope you get my sincerity when I apologize for not understanding exactly your position.

@Ben, would the world be a better place without him? Probably, until the next guy takes his place. I myself personally won't miss him. But I can't find joy in the death of another person. That things got so bad that people are happy that he's dead like Underdog said, reflects on just how bad things must of gotten. 9/11 was terrible, the resulting War on Terror is terrible. If one man's death makes all that pain go away, rejoice! But I'll refrain from showing my excitement until I've seen no retaliation for his death, all your troops sent home safely and the people of Iraq/Afghanistan able to rebuild their country.

I guess when it's not my country that has been directly attacked and my troops fighting the battle, I just see things differently. I'm walking a fine line with being offensive again but we just have a different perspective here on this side of the pond. I'm gonna leave this topic now so as not to cause offense.


Last edited by frostface on 5/2/2011 3:31:41 PM

Underdog15
Underdog15
9 years ago

A good post Max. It needs to remind us of how we respond to every tragedy in the world, and not just the ones that affect us personally.

Underdog15
Underdog15
9 years ago

@Ben
Based on how many people I know in my country, and the many relatives of me and my wife in Europe, I'd have to say that Frostface hasn't over-complicated things. What he says is VERY dominately the opinion of the world outside the US across many many countries.

Now, I have many US friends, and I do share, to some extent, the appreciation of the events that have transpired. I really do. But I definitely saw no insult in Frostface's post. Certainly no insult that was intended. But even if it doesn't seem "fair" to many American's, it's what a majority of the world thinks. Especially when they also believe American's only get sad about their own tragedies and no one elses. (I -KNOW- that's not true, but again… it's the dominating opinion of the world. The truth is somewhere in the middle, I think.)

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
9 years ago

Underdog: I'm sorry, but that's all meaningless to me. Politics and nationality…don't care.

A guy who slaughters people for essentially no reason is dead. Life is just too short to over-think that. Good effing riddance.

Underdog15
Underdog15
9 years ago

I dunno Ben… no one cared about Rawanda until they saw the movie. I don't believe for one second that nationality doesn't matter. Nationality helps prioritize which tragedies are worse than others.

But you're right. It is good he's finished. I, for one, wouldn't celebrate until the war is over, though.

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
9 years ago

I'm extremely ecstatic that bin laden got a bullet in the head, but he deserved far worse.

I think I'll go watch "I spit on your(watery) grave" just to celebrate!

BTW, let the date of 4/30 always be a celebration, since both, hitler's & bin laden's(lack of)souls, were snuffed out on the very exact same day in 1945 & 2011.

tes37
tes37
9 years ago

I don't know why people want to be politically correct all the time and too afraid to tell the truth. Osama obeyed the Quran better than most muslims. I know, because I've read it with my own eyes and not told by someone what it says.

Good riddance to all who practice hatred and claim they are doing a service to God.

Shams
Shams
9 years ago

@Tes: Against my better judgment…

"…to murder one innocent is as if one has murdered the whole of humankind, and to save one innocent is as if one has saved the whole of humankind"… Qur'an, Surah Maidah.

"Consumption of the unlawful, adultery, usury, murder, oppression (stealing the right of anyone and any kind be it human, animal, plant), [etc…].. all of these are counted amongst the greatest sins because they kill the soul (even if the body is left unharmed)." -Muhammed

"When God in the Qu'ran refers to those who have taken their leaders/priests/rabbis as their lords, he does not mean if they commanded them to bow down, that they would bow down. He means that their leaders have made right out of wrong and wrong out of right, and they have accepted this, so they have unknowingly taken them as their lords (beside God), which is the greatest "shirk"/polytheisism/rejection." -Muhammed

"God knows it did not cross our minds to attack the towers but after the situation became unbearable and we witnessed the injustice and tyranny of the American-Israeli alliance against our people in Palestine and Lebanon, I thought about it. And the events that affected me directly were that of 1982 and the events that followed – when America allowed the Israelis to invade Lebanon, helped by the U.S. Sixth Fleet. As I watched the destroyed towers in Lebanon, it occurred to me punish the unjust the same way (and) to destroy towers in America so it could taste some of what we are tasting and to stop killing our children and women." -Osama bin Laden

Seems to me Osama tried to justify murder of innocents, where as Muhammed and the Qur'an plainly said two wrongs can't make a right. Also seems to me that most of mankind adheres to the basic tenants of the Qur'an unknowingly better than OSB, as he disobeyed it knowingly.

Shams
Shams
9 years ago

Btw Tes, not to pick on you, but when you say you have read it with your own eyes, and have not been told by anyone, you are ignoring that you are reading someone's translation. And even if you were able to verify it was perfect Arabic translation, you are ignoring that w/o Muhammed's exegesis and explanation, it is a deliberately ambiguous and encryped text as per it's own admission (Qur'an 3:7), as it will be used to guide the good, and the evil will seek to misguide the evil with it, too.

tes37
tes37
9 years ago

I refuse to quote from that book, which will help keep this between you and I. I am aware of the tax and the people of the book. They catch my eye faster than the kind words it has scattered throughout. But, more than anything else, the forums have revealed that you do indeed practice the side of Islam that muslims try to conceal. I mean no offense, just trying to be a straight-shooter with you.

I will say, however, you have never been uncivil to me.

Shams
Shams
9 years ago

Thank you for reciprocating, however, either you believe I am deceiving you, or that I have been deceived. So, in either case in your mind, I am on the wrong, and whatever truth I do present to you will be ignored as deception, and does not concern you nor interest you. The dialogue has effectively ended before it has started.

I have presented the side showing that which you refer to as "Muslims" are not Muslims, and that which you refer to as the "Qur'an" is not the Qur'an.

You claim to know who "Muslims" are, but the one Muslim who bothers to open a dialogue, you ignore. So be it. I have done my part. If you have any questions for me, then feel free to ask. If not, then please try to avoid making lambasting generalizations.

YashaZz
YashaZz
9 years ago

Maybe it's justice… maybe it's not.

Killing Osama Bin-Laden won't make the Al-Qaeda disappear but merely set them back from their plans. In the near future they will have a new leader or a new plan for future attacks. Who knows?

I don't think any of us can answer that question, all we can do is guess.

But in my humble opinion (hey, don't take it to offence) I stopped believing the American government a long time ago because I really don't know what is truth and what is not.

Qubex
Qubex
9 years ago

Very Hollywood like World 🙂 Let's churn em out like Swiss cheese!

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

Underdog15
Underdog15
9 years ago

Maybe this explains my stance better:

"I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that"
— Martin Luther King, Jr

N_C
N_C
9 years ago

All I know for sure is…. a 3 am pre dawn helicopter raid with elements of seal team six and CIA operatives and mercenaries is about as terrifying as it gets… haha The best tactical marksmen in the world coming straight into your home via helicopter and rapelling gear.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

What's with the Mao avatar?

N_C
N_C
9 years ago

@jawknee
Mystery. No really I was just being a turd and trying to provoke a response from you on the earlier comments, nothing more nothing less. I don't actually support the child virgin fond murder supporter. Lol.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

So it's funny to you that some might take offense to you using an image of a mad man and murderer as your avatar? Why didn't you just go the distance and use an image of Hitler?

N_C
N_C
9 years ago

@Jawknee
Oh come now Jawk, let's not walk this tight rope where you pretend to be the moral compass, you know its a load of caca, I won't even go into it any further than that.

N_C
N_C
9 years ago

@Jawknee
While I'm at it, actually Mao is worse than Hitler.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

Your avatar says more about you and your moral compass than my reaction to it does about me.