Town Withholds Chuck E. Cheese License, Partly Over Game Violence Concerns

Violent games and bad behavior have town supervisors in Amherst, New York concerned about their local Chuck E. Cheese location.

The Buffalo News reports that members of the Amherst Town Board were deadlocked with a 3-3 vote on whether to renew a game license for the restaurant, which is often used for children’s parties. Council Member Shelly Schratz offered her opinion on the level of violence in some of the arcade games at Chuck E. Cheese:

When I see 6-year-olds, 8-year-olds playing those games, when all the time we’re opening the paper and seeing those stories on youth violence, do we need those games to make money?

However, Council Member Mark Manna disputed his colleague’s comments in harsh terms:

By what moral authority does Shelly Schratz have to go into a business and say what you have is not age-appropriate? It’s clearly Shelly sticking her nose in where it doesn’t belong. I’ve never seen games [there] that are gory or explicit. There is more violence in a Bugs Bunny cartoon.

Buffalo News reporter Sandra Tan did her own research, finding some violent gaming fare:

[Chuck E. Cheese] offered about half a dozen yellow-rated games, which include some nongory and non-explicit violence.

This included shooting and hunting games in which people, animals and various zombies, aggressive creatures and monsters are attacking or being attacked by the game player. These games were separated from the toddler play area but sprinkled amid other nonviolent video games and skill games such as skeeball.

A spokeswoman for Chuck E. Cheese said that the company would address the board’s concerns. Amherst’s Town Attorney expressed a belief that the situation would be worked out.

Via: Kotaku

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on RedditEmail this to someone


  1. Kommisar says:

    Looking at Juvenile violet crime arrests tracked by the FBI (the data available only goes back to 1994, unfortunately)…  basically the numbers keep going town year after year until 2004, and then started climbing back up.

    But if you notice, the increases in 2005 and 2006 are almost completely due to Robbery (and why *that* statistic is spiking is an entirely different discussion).

  2. Zero Beat says:

    Can’t blame you for the tiredness.  They keep using the same arguments and logic, are shown time and again that they’re wrong, and instead of learning and growing from the experience, they just repeat the same tired arguments ad nauseum.

    It supports my theory that a lobotomy is required of all politicians on Earth.


    "That’s not ironic. That’s justice."

  3. Alyric says:

    When I see 6-year-olds, 8-year-olds playing those games, when all the time we’re opening the paper and seeing those stories on youth violence, do we need those games to make money?

    Maybe you should take that up with your paper, then. After all, youth violence today is far lower than when you were a child.

  4. Neo_DrKefka says:

    Oh great. So now they are going to get sued for free speech concerns but what kills me here is that these acraded are Ancient. 

  5. TBoneTony says:

    Sometimes in kids sports, it is the parents who display the worst behaviour.

    In Australia, some parents are banned from their kids sports because of their behaviour, and the parents are singled out and the kids have to suffer the humiliation from their school’s bullies when they go to school.

    Hope that America don’t follow that same tactic or else many school children will be facing depression and also suicide from bullies at school and also on the internet who go to their school.


    I think that sums up the problems we are having, the bullies get bullied by everyone else and everyone else then becomes the bully.


    I don’t know what I am talking about anymore.

  6. TBoneTony says:

    Just wait until both the ESA and Chuck E Cheese start sueing the town.

    That would be good to watch.


  7. Erik says:

    Anyone who thinks that skee ball is nonviolent has never had one of those heavy-assed balls ricochet back at them.

    -Ultimately what will do in mankind is a person’s fear of their own freedom-

  8. Father Time says:

    That would be an awesome ride, only problem is it would be killing the Simpsons ride.

    Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it’s over they have the same positions they started in.

  9. Doom90885 says:

    Its been 15 years since I been to a Chuck E Cheese and most of the games I saw are or were probably T or lower and T games were few and far between. I’m surprised nobody game up with the simple idea for the parents to actually monitor their kids?! I wouldn’t ask for parents to be preathing down their kids’ neck but to maybe see where they are every 10-15 mnutes and if they’re playing a game you don’t approve and do what’s apparently the hardest part of being a parent: say NO! In any case this whole arguement is stupid. You can use almost any game in existence and say it possibly contributes to violence. So for me this arguemnet has no validity. 

  10. hellfire7885 says:

    That’s actually correct. Those stickers are put o nall arcade machinesn ow as far as I know. Saw them at Gameworks. The only games without them were ticket games.

  11. Cheater87 says:

    My guess is yellow is medium content. Kinda like the European stop light ratings. Maybe time crisis or something like that.

  12. Mr. Peacock says:

    That horrific animatronic band they have has scarred far more children than any video games ever will.

  13. hayabusa75 says:

    "Yellow-rated"?  What’s that, and who’s doing the rating?

    "De minimus non curat lex"

  14. hellfire7885 says:

    So depriving kids of yet another venue to have fun in is better than giving them a place to go where the trouble they’ll cause might be minimal.

    And paretns getting into fights? SOundsl ike Little League. Usually it’s the parents who ruin a good tiem for the kids.

  15. Adrian Lopez says:

    The town is denying a license to Cuck E. Cheese for carrying particular kinds of constitutionally protected content? Can they really get away with that? It seems to me the constitution is meaningless if every two-bit local government can drive out constitutionally protected speech by zoning it away.

  16. MasterAssassin says:

    Haven’t been to Chucky Cheeses since having my 5th birthday party there 14 years ago but I do remember seeing Silent Scope, Time Crisis, House of the Dead, Tekken and Mortal Kombat at Haunted Trails and another arcade that I went to as a field trip when I was in day camp as a kid. BTW who’s giving the kids the money to play these games the PARENTS!!!! I really doubt there are a lot of unsupervised really young kids there. Sorry but this is just more out of touch zealots trying to cram thier worldview down someone else’s throat.

  17. Zero Beat says:

    Main difference is that in Morrowind and Oblivion, people don’t want you stealing their stuff.  You need to be sneaky.

    In JRPGs, you could take someone’s life savings right in front of them, and they won’t raise an eyebrow.  You can be as blatant as you want.


    "That’s not ironic. That’s justice."

  18. hayabusa75 says:

    "That’s about as likely as JRPG’s causing people to become klepto’s."

    A winner is you

    "De minimus non curat lex"

  19. sqlrob says:

    Adventure gamer’s creed:

    Take it if it’s not nailed down. If it is nailed down, find a hammer.


  20. Mech says:

    "That’s about as likely as JRPG’s causing people to become klepto’s."
    LOL. That is probably one of the absolute best examples you could possibly use.

  21. Kabyk says:

    So first its Halo and Gears of War that were going to be the cause of a Columbine, but now its Wild Bucks Hunting and House Of The Dead, too?

    That’s about as likely as JRPG’s causing people to become klepto’s.

    America sure is becoming a sissy nation…

  22. Aliasalpha says:

    Unless of course you have to bash the lock open because the closet is a priceless family heirloom, it just LOOKS like cheap pine and is being used to store old pants

  23. Shahab says:

    While the owner of the house is sitting right in front of you but apparently doesn’t care that you took his "Cloak of Smiting" from his closet.

  24. JDKJ says:

    And that, more than any issues related to videogames, could be the real problem. Amherst may not see Chuck E. Cheese as the kind of business they’re interested in having around town.

  25. Nekowolf says:

    Pfff. Whatever; come to my state and check out one in, I think it was in Flint. Every once in a while, you hear a story about real fights breaking out…among adults.

  26. JDKJ says:

    And Whack-a-Gopher isn’t violent? A poor, defenseless rodent sticks it head above ground and points are earned by bashing it over the head with a mallet. Nothing violent about that, I guess. And certainly nothing which would encourage cruelty to animals.

  27. JDKJ says:

    But the Dave & Buster’s in town may not pose quite the same problems. It’d be interesting to see if any of the same issues being raised about Chuck E. Cheese were raised when B&D’s license came up for renewal. I imagine they both offer some of the exact same videogames.

  28. Rocketboy says:

    Yup.  It just does not fit in with their high-class image of themselves, or their sinking swamp built homes.

  29. Lou says:

     It’s not like you’re going to see Mortal Kombat, Street Fighter or Tekken on those establishments. The most "voilent" game I’ve seen on a Chuck E. Cheese has been freaking After Burner. Trust me my 4 year old son drags me and the missus to the restaurant in my area.

    I can’t believe that these A-holes would rather loose jobs in their city for their so called "Morality".

  30. ZippyDSMlee says:

    I would cry thought police…but…….decade old arcade games and sucky pizza/cake are the best reasons to close the horrable chain down……


    I am a criminal because I purchase media,I am a criminal because I use media, I am a criminal because I chose to own media..We shall remain criminals until Corporate stay’s outside our bedrooms..

  31. Zerodash says:

    I hope I die young so I don’t have to see the full extent of this new, softer America we are creating.  It’s like Demolition Man is coming true… 🙁

  32. CyberSkull says:

    I don’t think the council has a leg to stand on here. If they had stated anything other than that they didn’t care for the game content there would not be a controversy. 

  33. nighstalker160 says:

    Mark Manna deserves some kind of endorsement from the ECA for that comment. That’s the kind of politician we need more of "Who the hell do you think you are, get your ass down off your high horse and THINK for a minute."

Comments are closed.