The Huffington Post takes victory lap after pressuring game developer into censoring their game (Opinion)
In their relatively short life as an entertainment medium, video games have a rich history of “killing.” Since the advent of the hobby, there have been games in which players are tasked with killing criminals, soldiers, politicians, police officers, lawyers, zookeepers, movie stars, circus acrobats, babies, animals, even sushi chefs.
activists journalists at The Huffington Post, however, only one particular class of person should be protected by fictional violence above all others: journalists.
Originally released in 2014 (Yes – five years ago), Sniper 3D Assassin featured one single mission in which the player is tasked with tracking down and killing a journalist who bribed a police officer for information. One. Single. Mission.
The Huffington Post just couldn’t bear this overwhelming insult. Despite Sniper 3D Assassin being available on mobile platforms for years, once the go-getters at HuffPo caught wind of this one mission, they wrote a predictable, politically-charged hit-piece targeting the game’s developer, TFG Co. Once again, these “journalists” leaned on scientifically false claims that real-world violence is tied to fictional video game violence to make their argument. In fact, the HuffPo writers demonstrated precisely how offended they were by including a video of the mission in their post, which you can watch below. (The Breaking News mission begins at approximately the 07:30 mark)
Instead of defending its product, TFG Co. almost immediately caved under pressure and removed the mission from Sniper 3D Assassin. Here’s the statement from TFG:
“Our game Sniper 3D Assassin is fictional and is intended for mature audiences… At TFG, we work to create games that bring fun and entertainment to users all around the world. As such, we take feedback from our players very seriously. After listening to our community today, we have decided to remove the mission ‘Breaking News’ from the game.”
One can’t help but wonder what “community” TFG is listening to, because if the actual Sniper 3D Assassin player base had an issue with the Breaking News mission, it’s almost certain that the company would have heard about it before activist-minded HuffPo writers penned their hit-piece, you know, sometime between 2014 and three days ago.
With Sniper 3D Assassin being such an old game, it’s perhaps excusable to some that TFG remove the mission considering that they aren’t likely to milk the game for much additional profit, anyway. Some might excuse it. I don’t. Shame on you, TFG, for buckling. You’ve just emboldened these moralizing censors parading around as journalists to try this same nonsense again, and they will try it again.
And to The Huffington Post and every other “news” outlet joining in on your victory lap celebrating censorship: killing a reporter in a fictional video game doesn’t make people hate journalists. Pulling crap like this makes people hate journalists.
To everyone else, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: the next time some nagging puritan claims that “Nobody is trying to take your games away…” They. Are. Lying.