The Red Cross Clarifies Video Game Comments

The Red Cross don't want to arrest people for doing naughty things during warfare in a video game, they DO want to educate though...which is just as bad.

by on 9th Dec, 2011

A couple of days ago we reported on the Red Cross's attempts to insert little things like the Geneva convention into video games, an attempt that would force players to let enemies in Final Stand survive. Some sites took the idea and ran with it, claiming that any attempt to do this would destroy the FPS genre as we know it.

But in a new FAQ posted to their website, the Red Cross went into more detail on their attempts to insert a little more legaleze into our games. 

"In real life, armed forces are subject to the laws of armed conflict. Video games simulating the experience of armed forces therefore have the potential to raise awareness of the rules that those forces must comply with whenever they engage in armed conflict – this is one of the things that interests the ICRC. As a matter of fact, certain video games already take into account how real-life military personnel are trained to behave in conflict situations."

They're not trying to force us into playing a certain way, they're trying to educate us! The devils! This FAQ was obviously in response to overwhelming reaction (is there any other kind in this industry?) to their statement and one of the questions reads "why does the ICRC show interest in video games but not, for example, in books, comics, TV series or films?

"The ICRC is occasionally approached by filmmakers or authors who want to portray its activities in past or present armed conflicts. It has thus had contacts with various segments of the entertainment world beyond the developers of video games. The ICRC is not interested in all video games – only in those simulating armed conflict. Some of these games are being designed and produced by the same companies developing simulated battlefields for the training of armed forces."

My favourite answer is in response to those websites that started screaming that the Red Cross wanted to arrest people who went against the laws of war in a video game. Just imagine some overworked PR consultant, head in hand, thinking "who the hell are these losers?"

"No," the overworked PR consultant writes, "serious violations of the laws of war can only be committed in real-life situations, not in video games."

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