According to Cliff Bleszinski, creator of Gears of War, no one is supposed to be revolted by the curb-stomping, chainsawing, gore smattered kill-fest that is the Gears of War series; it’s supposed to be funny. At least that’s what he told the BBC in a recent interview.
“When we create our games we use a slapstick type of violence, we poke each other in the eyes and hit each other with frying pans like the old Warner Brothers cartoons. It's funny because the industry sometimes comes under fire from watchdog groups with regard to this sort of violence.”
These comments come just after the opening volley of arguments for Schwarzenegger v. EMA last week, so it is no surprise that some studios are starting to feel the need to put their work in context.
“We always believe that when we first see this muscular space marine beating down a lizard man and heads explode with water melon guts spewing out of them, you're morally inclined to smile and giggle rather than be revolted.”
"The majority of what we implement into the game we do for feedback and interactivity, not because we're strange sadistic people who want to see how much blood we can put on the screen when you shoot one of the lizard creatures.”
"We do it to let the player know you did in fact succeed, that you are hitting a target and you need that kind of feedback in order to create what is a successful interactive experience."
While Bliszinski certainly seems to appreciate the cathartic properties of a little ultra-violence, he is also quick to assure us that his team is dedicated to depicting that violence responsibly.
“We have an internal moral compass where we will decide, 'No that's a little bit too much,' or ‘we need to cut the violence back a little bit’. So there's still ways of showing violence to an affecting user without showing too much."
Nov 10, 2010