Some times a Game should just be a Game

So much anger directed at Blizzard because of a statement made. Whether you feel the line of questions was leading to a desired response or the reporting emphasized comments in a bad light or not, In a nutshell they stay away from focusing on social issues and making a game. Many chimed in that times have changed and that WoW should incorporate more social issues into the game and if they don’t I am quitting. Perhaps it is not so much that times have changed but also that we as players have changed, those that started playing 10 years ago in their late teens and early 20’s are now in their late 20’s and early 30’s or older. They are no longer in High school or College; they are married, in relationships, and have kids, jobs, careers. The game is still the same, but we as players have changed.
Now some have said that the game should change too because we have, but what of those just picking it up for the first time in their teens, did we start playing because it reflected the current social issues around the world? No. We started playing World of Warcraft because it was just a game. An escape for our real lives. Here is an alphabetical list of social issues a fast Google search brought up.

• Abortion
• Affirmative Action
• Affordable Care Act (Obamacare)
• Ageism / Age Discrimination
• Airport Screening Procedures
• Airport Security
• Alcoholism
• Animal Rights
• Anorexia Nervosa
• Anti-Muslim Discrimination
• Binge Drinking
• Birth Control
• Bulimia Nervosa
• Bullying
• Campus Crime
• Capital Punishment / Death Penalty
• Chemical Weapons
• Child Labor
• Classism
• Cloning
• Colorisim
• Corporate Downsizing
• Date Rape
• Disaster Relief
• Domestic Violence
• Dream Act
• Drinking and Driving
• Driving While Black
• Drug Abuse / Drug Addiction
• Eating Disorders
• Embryonic Stem Cell Research
• Environmental Pollution
• Environmental Racism
• Equal Pay
• Euthanasia / Assisted Suicide
• Felony Disenfranchisement
• Gang Violence
• Gay Rights
• Genetic Engineering
• Gentrification
• Global Warming
• Gun Control
• Gun Rights
• Hate Crimes
• Hazing
• Health Care Disparities
• Health Care Reform
• HIV / AIDS
• Home Forclosures
• Homelessness
• Honor Killings
• Human Trafficking
• Hunger
• Identify Theft
• Illegal Immigration
• Legalization of Marijuana
• Legalization of Prostitution
• Mall Shootings
• Mass Murder
• Meth Labs (Methamphetamine Laboratories)
• Minimum Wage
• NRA
• National Rifle Association
• Obamacare (Affordable Care Act)
• Obesity
• Organ and Body Donation
• Outsourcing Jobs
• Photobombs
• Pornography
• Poverty
• Prayer in Schools
• Racial Disparities in Health Care
• Racial Disparities in Sentencing
• Racial Profiling
• Racism
• Rape
• Retail Profiling
• Recycling and Conservation
• Right to Work
• Same-Sex Marriage
• Sex Trade
• Sexism
• Sexual Harassment
• Sexting
• Shopping While Black
• Single Parenting
• Smoking / Tobacco Use
• Social Networking and Privacy
• Stand Your Ground Laws
• Steroid Use in Sports
• Stereotyping
• Sweat Shops
• Teen Pregnancy
• Terrorism
• Texting While Driving
• Texting While Walking
• Unemployment
• Union Busting
• Violence in Schools
• Violence in Music Videos
• Violence in Video Games
• Voter Disenfranchisement
• Voting Rights Restrictions

I am certain the list could be much longer, and that there are a few issues missing, some obviously more controversial than others. The point is there are a lot of issues in the world, not just the US, because WoW is a worldwide game, they need to be aware of anything that may be great for us to see, but may offend other countries.. My question to all of you would be who decides which get included. Do they incorporate a same sex couple, but ignore molestation? They have created a game that tries to teach us that helping one another is a good way to get things done. They could easily say WoW is a single player game where you don’t need anyone to do everything. Queue up with NPC’s and kill internet dragons. They are focusing on making a game, nothing more. I could say from my own personal life that I feel Blizzard should include quests dealing with couples that cannot have children, or about a teenage relative that lost their life to an accidental drug overdose, because her friends were afraid to call for help because one person had outstanding warrants, and a few others. It is truly a slippery slope they are reluctant to step on to.

Some times a game should be just a game.

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6 thoughts on “Some times a Game should just be a Game

  1. And what is a game in your definition? That’s quite a list of things that shouldn’t be in “just games”. What’s a game and what should be in them?

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    1. My point was that once you include 1 current cause, or worthy social issue, the gates open for more and more until it is no longer a game of fantasy but a reflection of the world we live in. I’m not saying that everything should be just ignored as we run around on our make believe characters. It’s just that there are hundreds of very valid issues that could also demand they be included. They try their best to make this game we play in enjoyable for as many as possible.

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      1. Ah the old slippery slope argument 🙂
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slippery_slope

        Games will not suddenly become worse just because it’s more inclusive. Which is basically all ANYONE is asking for when social topics crop up. Slippery slope is an extremist argument which ignores this. Gamers are only asking to be included, to be part of the fantasy.

        You say *your* fantasy will be destroyed if these things are included in games. Do the gamers who feel these fantasies represent their reality (something you think games should not do) by including sexism also get a say? Would you still apply this argument? It’s an interesting dilemma.

        In any case, fantasies aren’t fantasies because of what they exclude. They’re fantasies because of what we put in them. Usually, its something we feel is missing from our lives (so we imagine it being there, thus fantasy). If we’re trying to imagine a world without any one of the social issues you mention, then all fantasies have to become inclusive don’t they? Otherwise they start to look like our own world.

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      2. You obviously have a different opinion on the matter than I do and that’s fine. I prefer to get to know the people and the lives of those I play with. Having a virtual character I may interact with 1 or 2 times bringing an issue to light may mean something briefly to some, but will be forgotten quickly by many. The real people I talk to everyday that share their problems and joys and everything are why I like WoW the way it’s is. A game with millions of diverse people from all walks of life

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  2. I see. Then there’s no reason to leave social topics out (since they will be easily forgotten, thus disturbing no one) and since the people you currently play with won’t disappear just because the issues are there. Sounds like everyone wins 🙂

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