Hitting Close to Home: Sensitivity Over Games
With realism on the rise, emotions often come into play.
By: Steve Watts June 16, 2011
Like any form of popular media, video games often try their hand at gritty and disconcerting subject matter. While Mature rated games attempt, with varying results, to explore adult themes, the results skew more to the side of fiction. Commentary on wars, for example, usually takes the form of space marines on a distant planet; games often use sci-fi and fantasy tropes to serve as metaphors. Classic storytelling staples like these can be found across all types of media, but when games inch closer to reality, the public starts to get uncomfortable.
This is coming to a head in the case of Call of Juarez: The Cartel, a game set against the backdrop of a very real -- and very violent -- drug war in Juarez, Mexico. Though the game's critics haven't actually seen it in action, the concept is being interpreted by some as a slap in the face to the city's dead. Ciudad Juarez became the homicide capitol of the world in 2009, with murders numbering in the hundreds every month.