Are critics of the Grand Theft Auto series the same breed of culture cops who were mortified by Elvis Presley’s hip shaking style of rock’n’roll in the 1950’s?
Leslie Benzies (left), president of Scotland’s Rockstar North, creator of GTA IV, says they are. Benzies told The Scotsman:
[GTA IV critics are] the same kind of people who complained about Elvis… There is a big fear factor here. It’s [like] the coming of the railways, it’s Elvis shaking his hips. It’s cars going over 25 miles per hour and making people explode.
We’ve had such a beating over the past three years, by the US government, the British government, the Daily Mail. ‘You kill prostitutes’ – that’s usually the objection. I ask if they’ve ever played the game. Invariably they haven’t.
Benzies also offered his thoughts on another controversial title, Manhunt 2. The game was banned in the UK until Rockstar won an appeal earlier thus year:
We wanted to make a horror game that would scare you in the same way a film would. If it’s a film or a book, you can do what you want. We seem to be in a different category. We’re very careful who we market the game to, and what is in the game.