Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's Testimony on Game Bill

February 26, 2009 -

Earlier this week GamePolitics posted exclusive transcripts of testimony at Monday's hearing before a Utah House committee which was considering Jack Thompson's video game bill.

Among those appearing before the committe was Thompson ally Gayle Ruzicka, the politically formidable head of the ultra-conservative Utah Eagle Forum.

As we reported, Ruzicka, in an urgent tone, beseeched the committee to approve the Thompson bill: 

These [games] are the kind of things that are training our children. This is the vile stuff. The Grand Theft Auto games are cop-killing murder simulators. And when [Devin Moore] was faced with being arrested he knew exactly what to do. He knew how to aim... at the head and each time killed these [officers]. We don't want this for our children. Not at all. Please, please vote yes today on this bill.

 

Anything we can do to protect our children from the violence, from the filthy pornography that the only way they can get into the pornography is being good at the game. They work hard and get to certain levels and when they get to the high enough levels then they get into the pornography - filthy, vile stuff that you would be appalled and never want your children to see. And then as a reward, they get to kill the women...

Ruzicka's protestations caught the attention of game design blog Third Helix where the author tackled her claims, point by point:

...our industry never steps up to defend ourselves in light of their lies. [Ruzicka is] referring to the Grand Theft Auto games, of course, and her inaccuracies are numerous:

    * There is no pornography in GTA, unless your definition of pornography is “any sexual content or reference of any kind”. The closest thing you’ll get is the Hot Coffee mod for GTA:SA, and the (brief) male nudity in The Lost & The Damned. The comically-low resolution of the former, and the non-sexual nature of the latter, clearly distance them from any generally-accepted concept of pornography.

 

    * GTA does not have “levels”, as it is primarily a sandbox game. The closest analogue is “missions”, which do not always have a strictly linear progression, and the games’ content does not become any more explicit as players progress.

 

    * Explicit content is not used as a reward for gameplay. It is simply the overall tone of the games, and many well-regarded movies do exactly the same thing.

 

    * Killing the prostitutes is not a reward for anything at all, nor is it encouraged. It does provide a marginal “reward” in that you gain a small amount of cash — should you choose to pick it up — but this amounts to virtually nothing in the overall game economy and is not generally worth doing.

I understand that people like Ms. Ruzicka are concerned about their children (and other people’s children, too, apparently). But it would be nice if the things such people are afraid of were actually real, and not inventions of rumor and fevered imagination...


Comments

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

This is starting to piss me off. I feel like everytime, we try to say what is true NOBODY LISTENS!

What the fuck does it take for our voices to be heard and overpower the people who can't thier facts straight?

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Get into politics perhaps. Fight fire with fire.

Also, we have this guy on our side:

http://www.gameattorney.com/blog/

GameSnooper

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Thumps up for pointing out those mistakes point by point.

I wish I was in that room with those talks going though the committie.

I would have stood up and asked the lady from the Eagle Forum if she had ever played Grand Theft Auto.

She would have said, "No, but I don't need to play this trash. I know it is porn."

Also the fact that the Eagle Forum are trying to Sell this bill to the government when in fact they are always lying about the worst examples of the Videogame Industry.

I wonder how long it would be until the people at the Eagle forum start talking about the Hentai games?

If they are desperate, they will literally attack anything.

 

TBoneTony

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Odds are her tone would convey her also saying "I know you're a gamer, so get back on the short bus so those of us with room temperature IQ can talk, child"

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

Honestly, the industry needs to grow a fucking spine and sue these lying idiots back to the stone age.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Gayle Ruzicka seems sorta like the conservative version of Hilary Clinton.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Yeah, both gargoyles without a shred of feminine qualities whatsoever.

Geaux Saints, Geaux Tigers, Geaux Hornets, Jack Thompson can geaux chase a chupacabra.

Geaux Saints, Geaux Tigers, Geaux Pelicans. Solidarity for the Saints = No retreat, no surrender. 2013 = Saints' revenge on the NFL. Even through the darkest days, this fire burns always.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Not to make it about the person . . . but she does look like a hag.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

Again this is why the ESA is useless now, Gallagher is a spineless wimp who needs to be ousted for power and a gamer put in his place. Hell even some host from G4 would make a better rep than him.


Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

"Hell even some host from G4 would make a better rep than him."

Adam Sessler FTW.

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"A Chrono Trigger is anything that unleashes its will or desire to change history!" -Gaspar

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

I think the gaming industry doesn't react to these accusations because...it's good publicity.

 

Think about it.  You're a 15 year old kid, just about to hit puberty, and ur told some parents are upset about a game that has strippers and gang violence in it.  The first thing on that kid's mind is "I gotta get that game somehow!"

 

Also, I remember when the blood cheat in Mortal Kombat got big and parents got all pissed. I wanted that game so badly.  We all had to go to 1 kid's house because his parents didn't care about it.  I begged my mom for the game but she wouldn't let me get it.  It wasn't until last year that she let me get the game for the wii....I'm 25.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

If you are 15 and just hitting puberty, you may have other problems.

Also, if you are 25 and still have to get your parents permission to buy games, you have even bigger problems.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

EZK, I resent (honestly) that second one about being 25 and still having to ask folks for games. Some of us are still that dependent, y'know. While some will outgrow it, others won't.

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"A Chrono Trigger is anything that unleashes its will or desire to change history!" -Gaspar

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Trust me, if you're 25 and still asking your mum whether you can have a game, you need to do one (or more) of three things:

1. get a job so you can buy your own games.

2. move into your own place.

3. stop asking mum for permission.

All the above are also prerequisites for getting a life.

Personally, I think it's also terrible that the parent thinks it's okay to impose rules on an adult.  But I guess if perhaps the adult is still acting like a kid, a certain amount of flexibility is needed.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Where I come from boys hit puberty when six and work in coal mine for minimum 4 years. We have no time for children. If not man by 7 years at maximum, they are fed to Great Mahikail Bear, so as to satisfy it's great and terrible hunger and save village for another 4 hours. :D

But yes, if you tell a kid they can't have something, they want it more. On that point, he is completely right. The more the whiners whine, the more interest they gather for the game/CD/movie.

Reality/////////////////////////////////////Fantasy. Seems like a pretty thick line to me...

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Very true, for all of JT's railing against 2 LIVE Crew, his efforts gave them their highest selling album of their careers.

"You know what I wish? I wish all the scum of the Earth had one throat and I had my hands about it."

"You know what I wish? I wish all the scum of the Earth had one throat and I had my hands about it."

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

The content in rap music has gotten a hundred times more lewd than in 2 Live Crew's time as well. Nice Pyrrhic victory Thompson.

I guess he stopped attacking the rap music industry because video gamers are an easier target with their less dignified representation. Rap artists are "street cool" and are more willing to mouth off at critics.

GameSnooper

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

don't mock my lifestyle.


Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Ha ha ha, ouch and OUCH!!!

______________________________ Because I have NO Life... :P I introduce the following. PSN User ID: FirebirdXR (Yes, I use that moniker often) Xbox Live ID: FirebirdLR (Don't bother, It's a Silver Membership) *Limited Time Only* I put both because I

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Something I find amusing: This lady is a conservative, which suggests she is a second amendment supporter. She rants about games affecting Moore's psyche, but doesn't seem to be concerned over how he obtained the firearm...

(not trying to start a gun control arguement, just noticing something funny)

Reality/////////////////////////////////////Fantasy. Seems like a pretty thick line to me...

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Yea it's awkward How He got his Hands on a gun(I'm a gun rights supporter, too(Even though I Do not own a gun(Even more Awkward))

Watching JT on GP is just like watching an episode of Jerry springer only as funny as the fights

America has just became its own version of the Jerry Springer Show after a bizarre moment in Florida involving a carnival worker.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Boy, you'd better close that last parenthesis if you know what's good for you!

---------------------------------

Internet troll > internet paladin

-------------------------------------------------------- Believe in something! Even if it's wrong, believe in it! GET OFF MY PHONE! -Glenn Beck

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

he can't now; you replied to his post

岩「…Where do masochists go when they die?」

岩「…I can see why Hasselbeck's worried about fake guns killing fake people. afterall, she's a fake journalist on a fake news channel」

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Oh god, your right. What have I done!?

---------------------------------

Internet troll > internet paladin

-------------------------------------------------------- Believe in something! Even if it's wrong, believe in it! GET OFF MY PHONE! -Glenn Beck

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Die, monster! You don't belong in this world!

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"A Chrono Trigger is anything that unleashes its will or desire to change history!" -Gaspar

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

This thread has derailed. Thankfully, nobody was hurt or banned.

岩「…Where do masochists go when they die?」

岩「…I can see why Hasselbeck's worried about fake guns killing fake people. afterall, she's a fake journalist on a fake news channel」

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

OMG, Brio trains!

 

"That's not ironic. That's justice."

"That's not ironic. That's justice."

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Then again, what I said WAS relevant to what Gamadaya said, so if it was indeed derailed, it would obviously be your fault.

*head explodes from super logic*

I'm OK!

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"A Chrono Trigger is anything that unleashes its will or desire to change history!" -Gaspar

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

true, but Gamadaya was the one who derailed it. the rest of us were sent as replacement trains before the mess was cleared up ala. Futurama episode "The Day the Earth Stood Stupid"

岩「…Where do masochists go when they die?」

岩「…I can see why Hasselbeck's worried about fake guns killing fake people. afterall, she's a fake journalist on a fake news channel」

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

Fact of the matter is Ms. Ruziack lied under oath.  She should be charged with perjury and prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

 

"You know what I wish? I wish all the scum of the Earth had one throat and I had my hands about it."

"You know what I wish? I wish all the scum of the Earth had one throat and I had my hands about it."

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

It's Time to Initate a federal investigation of Thompson and the Utah eagle forum into the possibility that they commited Perjury

Watching JT on GP is just like watching an episode of Jerry springer only as funny as the fights

America has just became its own version of the Jerry Springer Show after a bizarre moment in Florida involving a carnival worker.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

Y'know, I'm surprised Jack was never charged with perjury, especially after being disbarred.

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"A Chrono Trigger is anything that unleashes its will or desire to change history!" -Gaspar

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

But then the other inmates would sue for cruel and unusual punishment.

 

"That's not ironic. That's justice."

"That's not ironic. That's justice."

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

Sadly little thinks like reality mean nothing to one like Ms. Ruziack and related ilk.  Any fact (truth)  that is contrary to what they beleive, or more to the point want others to believe are lies spread by the gaming industry.   I applaud the effort though. 

As for EA defending Mass Effect, truth or not they were the Ones that stuck that seriously crappy 3 install limit on what would otherwise have been an outstanding title so really should not be beating their collective chest in pride.   

 

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

It's perplexing that illegal drugs aren't ever the focus of Gayle Ruziack's energies. Given her up-close and personal experiences with the dangers of heroin addiction, you'd think she'd be off and runnng on a campaign to remedy Utah's drug problems instead of futzing around with videogames -- a subject about which she obviously knows very little.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Attacking drugs would require actual work, a no no with these people.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

Perhaps we need to stop teaching children biology in school as well, or at least don't let them see medical programs that let them know where vital organs are located in the human body and what happens if they are damaged by trauma.

 

--Verbinator

--Verbinator

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

The whole thing just stinks of the last generation being afraid of the current generation. I can imagine their mindset on the whole situation..

"Billy used to be such a nice kid, then some shady figure in a back alley videogame store made him buy this Great Theiving Automobiles contraption! Now he's become such a bad kid that he doesn't even go to 3am Mass at church or fill out the extra credit questions on tests at school! These videogames are rotting our childrens' minds with their bright colorful graphics and big shiny buttons!!"

Seriously, though.. How can the state leave decisions like this up to people whohave no idea what the hell they're talking about?

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Because the state governments are made up of human beings.

People are often more swayed by emotionally induced claims and fear-monging then they are by truth and fact.   It's mostly just the way the majority of people are.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Totally true, look at that J.K. Rowling trial against the Lexicon guy.  Instead of listing the legal reasons why she is right, she gave a sob story about her creative work being used to hurt her emotions....blah blah blah.....She won the lawsuit.....a multi-millionaire won a lawsuit against a big nerdy fan.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

Actually, it's worse than that - she's a billionaire.

 

"Life sucks, get a fuckin helmet" - Denis Leary

"Life sucks, get a fuckin helmet" - Denis Leary

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

"I understand that people like Ms. Ruzicka are concerned about their children "

WRONG WRONG WRONG!

These people don't give a crap about "the children", and they are too often well-aware that they are telling lies.  At worst, these scum are trying to turn this country into a theocracy by pushing Christian values as law.  At best, these scum are attacking games as low-hanging political fruit to further their careers.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's ...

True that.

---------------------------------

Internet troll > internet paladin

-------------------------------------------------------- Believe in something! Even if it's wrong, believe in it! GET OFF MY PHONE! -Glenn Beck

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

I agree with this as well.

 

And I will say again that people like THompson and Ruzicka has far sicker minds than any of the people they attack.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

He knew how to aim, because there is auto lock on in real life and a big white circle highlights my enemy with a dot on them telling me where the bullets will fly.

More paranoid uninformed conservative fanatical morons that are doing stuff for "teh children" for a game that is M-RATED. 

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

"And when [Devin Moore] was faced with being arrested he knew exactly what to do. He knew how to aim... at the head and each time killed these [officers]"

 

The basic anatomy knowledge admits that a shot in the head is way more effective than a shot in the "insert body part here".

Anyway, if he knew HOW TO aim he was already familiar with guns, 'cause there's no white pointer in real life and holding a gamepad isn't the same feeling than holding a gun, thing that those idiots would have known if they've actually played a game...

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

Not to mention - they make a lot out of how he was enough of a marksman to hit his targets in the head.  One of his victims was the guy he disarmed.  Which means he was within arm's range of him.  Hitting a melon-sized target at three feet doesn't exactly require expert marksman training.  And I thought the other victims were in the same room - hitting the melon from fifteen feet isn't that amazing a trick either, anyone with decent coordination and good luck might pull that off.

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

We as an industry need to be much more proactive about correcting the record on these kinds of things. Allowing our critics — even those with the best of intentions — to paint an inaccurate picture of our industry is, in effect, allowing them to control our identity.

I completely agree with this. But why doesn't the industry do this?

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

Because they are chicken. Seriously. When the ESA was asked what they were going to do during the Mass Effect fiasco, they just said to ask EA. EA itself did nothing. It was up to Bioware and the ECA to actually stand up for games.

The ESA is staffed with a bunch of spineless wimps who are more afraid of bad PR than the negative image that games get.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: Game Designer Points Out Flaws in Utah Conservative's

 
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james_fudgePortlandia is good and strange.09/16/2014 - 7:04am
E. Zachary KnightGot that same recommendation on Twitter. So I guess that is a good sign.09/15/2014 - 8:39pm
prh99Portlandia, though I don't watch a lot of sitcoms. Heard it was good though.09/15/2014 - 8:02pm
E. Zachary KnightSitcom recommendations for someone who like Parks and Rec but hates The Office: Go.09/15/2014 - 6:08pm
NeenekoEven if they do change their policy, they can only do it moving forward and I could see the mod/pack community simply branching.09/15/2014 - 12:50pm
Michael ChandraAs for take the money and run, the guy must have a networth of 8~9 digits already.09/15/2014 - 10:33am
Michael ChandraMe, I'm more betting on some form of mod API where servers must run donations/payments through them and they take a cut.09/15/2014 - 10:32am
Michael ChandraEspecially since they want it for promoting their phones. Killing user interest is the dumbest move to make.09/15/2014 - 10:32am
Michael ChandraGiven how the EULA actively allows for LPs, I'm not sure Microsoft is ready for the backlash of disallowing that.09/15/2014 - 10:31am
Matthew Wilsonthey wont do that, the backlash would be too big.09/15/2014 - 10:25am
ConsterSleaker: how is that a flipside? Sounds to me like that's basically what Notch himself said, except rudely.09/15/2014 - 10:18am
MaskedPixelanteOn the plus side, no more lazy Minecraft LPs, since iirc Microsoft has a strict "no monetization period" policy when it comes to their stuff.09/15/2014 - 10:13am
james_fudgeBut it continues to sell on every platform it is on, so there's that09/15/2014 - 10:09am
james_fudgeOh, well that's another matter :)09/15/2014 - 10:08am
E. Zachary KnightNothing against Notch here. I think it is great that he made something so cool. I just can't understand how it is worth $2.5 bil09/15/2014 - 9:59am
InfophileWhat a world we live in: Becoming a billionaire was the easy way out for Notch.09/15/2014 - 9:42am
james_fudgelots of hate for Notch here. I don't get it. Sorry he made a game everyone loved. What a monster he is!09/15/2014 - 9:37am
SleakerOn the flipside, Notch has been a horrible CEO for Mojang, and the company has grown on sheer inertia, DESPITE being mishandled over and over.09/15/2014 - 9:33am
SleakerI can understand Notch's statements he made to Kotaku about growing bigger than he intended, and getting hate for EULA changes he didn't enact.09/15/2014 - 9:32am
MaskedPixelantehttp://pastebin.com/n1qTeikM Notch's statement about the MS acquisition. He wanted out for a long time and this was the easiest way.09/15/2014 - 9:08am
 

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