Labour MP and prominent anti-videogames spokesman Kieth Vaz has tabled a motion in the House of Commons against the video game Modern Warfare 3 in light of the discovery of multiple scenes of gunplay, fighting and general warfare in a ‘modern’ setting.
Vaz has lobbied for the British Board of Film Classification to reclassify the games so that only those over thirty six would be legally able to buy the FPS. “My concern is that of influence,” Vaz claimed in addressing the house, “Children sit in front of this for hours- days even- soaking up its violent imagery. Is it inconceivable that this will result in many arming themselves with military hardware and mowing down hundreds of Russians in pulse pounding set pieces? No, I thought not.”
Vaz fears the mass recreation of violent scenes such as this.
Vaz noted the overlap between those caught committing violent crimes and those exposed to the record breakingly popular game (which has sold 6.5 million copies in the UK alone) may be symptomatic of the series’ ability to program impressionable minds. Though he did admit that few of these crimes included the deployent of Russian helicopter gunships or dual wielding silenced uzis with the perk that lets you reload in like, a second, he warns that this certainty would not be far away. “And that’ll mean game over for society” punned the 54 year old Minister, proudly.
“And to those who say it doesn’t directly instruct one in how to commit terrible deeds I say that you are deliberately misrepresenting the truth! Before I played I didn’t know how taking cover lets my health restore or how to cook a grenade or how to avoid those mines that pop up out of the ground. The key to those is to go prone when the game goes all slo-mo. Kept dying at that bit. Even with my short playtime I confidently predict I could field strip an M16 and provide covering sniper support to an SAS infiltration of bombed-up Russian embassy.”
Vaz also was sensitive to the similarities between real life terror events and those of the game, arguing that it was distasteful to allow people to ‘play’ a sequence where one side tries to kill an adversarial force through the use of weaponry while conflicts that could be described as identical to that still raged around the world and continued to claim the lives of British servicemen.
Labour MP Tom Watson has been Vaz’s main opponent, taunting him publicly that he only wants the game banned because he can’t even beat the single player campaign and that his multiplayer performance can be described at best as ‘epic fail’. Watson, who usually plays as a sniper under the screenname XXXhedsH0tz666 has been a vehement defender of the game and has supported the BBFC classification of the game as “fair and just.”
Vaz has claimed not to be an opponent of all video games but when asked by the House Speaker to answer some rudimentary questions to verify a basic level of knowledge of the medium- where to get Meryl’s codec in Metal Gear Solid, who Sephiroth is, what the virtues of Gabe Logan’s tazer are- Vaz was visibly flustered and silent. The House of Commons then erupted in jeers labelling the Labour MP a ‘noob’, and suggesting that he go back to Angry Birds or something.
Activision has promised to respond to Vaz as soon as the Leicester representative tells them what happens with Makarov right at the end.
Senior Features Correspondent