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Advice on first person killing games.

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Although I've done a fare amount of gaming, I would not consider myself a gamer. It's for this reason that I'm asking for an experienced perspective on the subject. Please know that I'm not attacking or judging in any way, I just want to make an informed decision regarding restricting first person killing games for my kids. 


I'm a parent to a 13 year lad and a 9 year old girl, and I'm struggling with my son wanting to play violently graphic first person killing games like call of duty, black ops, etc. I know this is ubiquitous in today's culture and it has taken the place of physical play and social interaction in many ways. I also know my son is playing these games at his friend's houses. It would be a huge mistake to even try to restrict that. At the same time I am a psychologist, I've read many studies that show the neuropsychological effect these games have on a developing brain. FMRI analysis clearly shows violent games repeatedly triggers and strengthens neural pathways that effect cognitive, social, and empathetic development. we learn from what we see. I'm not taking anything away from the strategy and cooperation aspects of the games, but lets face it, violence and killing is what makes it exciting. At 7 years old my son's friends were playing these games and networking for hours on end. Now in Jr high, this online social space is more important and influential in the lives of my son's friends that actual time spent socializing at school or physical play. My son describes feeling like an outcast because he can only network on mindcraft. 


My wife and I have done everything we can to support other activities for our kids such as golfing, soccer, baseball, football, skateboarding, push and electric scooters, mountain biking, dance, singing lessons, wood working, working on cars, etc, etc, etc. Unfortunately non of this reality shit is considered cool, or transferable to his friends. This is how my wife and I learned to manipulate our environment, to socialize, and interact in the physical world. We know we are pushing against society by not allow first person killing games in our house, on our family computer, ipad, etc. No doubt we are projecting our experience onto our kids, but this is not a moral judgement or a desire to raze passive kids. I teach them to tack shit from nobody. I just want my kids mind's to develop in the natural physical world of consequence for behavior. At least before they spend the rest of their lives staring into a screen. 


here's my question, if this is where society is going, am I helping or hurting my kids by not allowing it at home?








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I grew up with a new  invention called the television. There were concerns about watching too much westerns and whatever else... cartoons? I don't consider myself fucked up from it unless over watching TV has eroded my ability to self assess.


I think that if your kids can tell reality from non reality then limit it slightly and hope for the best. There are some trains of thought that say access to porn is an safety valve for the truly sexually fucked up frustrated pervs. Maybe on line violence is too? Then again there is the aversion aspect. Too much and you simply tire of it

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Well, my lady friend is a developmental psychopathologist. She would say a big nope on those games. Countless studies have shown they are very bad for the developing brains of children. I'm not here to argue with anyone either, or have a debate as I'm just giving you a third person answer. She could go on and on about that stuff all day. After all, she holds 3 degrees and a graduate degree on the subject. At the very least have a long open conversation about the reality of violent games. I remember one study she told me about where they used virtual reality headsets showing people eating food. The subjects in the study felt full and some became violently ill because the brain thought it was eating. Go with knowledge instead of feelings.

Also, kids will grow out of friends as they age. It won't be a big deal to "not be cool" in the long run. 

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This is a really good question, as a parent of two younguns (7 and 5) I know the time is fast approaching when im going to be faced with the same quandry. I think back to my childhood days when we used to play war games (albeit with toy guns and not graphic first person shooter games) and I dont think it was a problem.


Now, before I go on, im not adverse to a bit of shoot em up action (and in lawful circumstances a bit of application of punitive measures) though personally I believe there should be a cut off point with kids, especially with the quality of CGI these days. IMLTHO there is a huge difference between role play and enacting scenarios and graphic portrayal of violence on a TV screen.


Yes, times are changing though it doesnt mean as parents we should become lemmings and go with the flow. My kids will quite probably learn to live without this type of graphical role play, enactment etc whislt they are living under my roof and I am paying for their upkeep.


When they become old enough to be self sufficient, they can, and will hopefully as well bought up young adults make the right decisions. Until such time RW says no to youngsters having access to these games.


And Paradime, FWIW, it sounds to me like you are doing a great job with your kids.


My 2 cents worth.

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The violent games that depict human vs human killing scenarios is absolutely prohibited at this house, but I do not restrict the Human vs fantasy villain (monster, Alien, etc) and the fantasy games cannot pit them against each other. Co-op play only.


My boys are 11 and 8. They have very little in common with what I had as a kid. So I just involve myself with their games so I can give myself a better chance to share life experience with them should it be relative to what is in the game.


I do require sporting events for fall, spring, and summer though. Good grades are also their responsibility in payment for game time.


Stick to your moral standard and continue to withhold the COD type games.

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Just because you can, doesn't mean you should.  I think violent video games (first person kill) should be staved off until a later age.  Moreover, I suggest you get your kid interested in SUPERVISED shooting.  As in, real guns.  Show him that guns are NOT a toy and their purpose is to destroy or kill.  Take him to the shooting range with a .22, work up from there.  Take him hunting.  Remind him anything you kill, you eat.  Simple.  No trophy hunting bullshit.  Food.  Go out with the .22 and kill some squirrels.  Squirrel is delightful.  And they look like little fetus' frying up in the pan.  If you've taught him right and he respects what he kills as nourishment for his body, he will understand killing should never be "fun."  People who like to kill things for the rush scare the shit out of me.  I'd prefer to kill them, but that's not legal.


As my dad said this year to a party goer about the deer he got:  "I'm not a hunter, I'm an assassin.  I went down the hill, the deer didn't even have a chance.  30 minutes later it was being dressed out in the garage."  


I didn't have access to a lot of TV programs until I was at least 9 or 10.  We only had 6 channels anyway.  Did I see stuff at friends' houses?  Yep.  But I also knew enough to hold on to who I was.  Do I enjoy Grand Theft Auto?  Fuck yeah!  But I was in college enjoying it.  Had I had that outlet as a young man, I might have turned out very differently, and not for the better I don't think.  I was a little suicidal in my early teen years.  Not so bad as I needed to get help, but I thought about it a lot.  And you know what stopped me every time?  Thinking how sad my parents would be if I offed myself.  As much as the fights we had and the pain in the ass they were, they helped me through the early stages of life, and I thank them for it.

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I can say that playing games like GTA haven't had any influence on me. I was probably 9 the first time I played GTA, and that was my own choice, and 10 years later, I still play and enjoy it. I wasn't allowed to own a "T" game until I was probably 11. I agree that it can influence developing minds, but I've always has a sense of reality. I always knew not to do the stupid shit I see in games because I knew better. The people who blame their actions because of games, such as physically killing people/animals have a serious mental issue as far as I'm concerned.


Parenting and lack of general education are contributing factors too. If their attitude or actions change after playing particular games, straighten their ass out.

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As a former youth and an individual who has played such games extensively I will say this: playing the game is one thing, getting into on line multiplayer is a while other ball game. I can't tell you how many prepubescent kids have told me they were going to rape me, my mother, my dog, ect. You won't be able to get you're kids away from the games entirely but what you do is make sure they know the line between the game and real life, as well as social boundaries. There are a lot if tough guys on the internet (we seem to get those around here from time to time) and being an asshat in real life can get you a goot hit to the dlface.


When I was you sons age I was more into racing/simulator games like gran tourismo and ace combat.


Hell when I was a kid we used to play "war" where you and your buddies pretend to do the exact thing that the video games are recreating.......









.....and I haven't killed anyone yet....





Let your son play the games BUT limit the time he does so and keep an ear on what he is doing, or don't let him use a headset online (unless it is a highly stratigic game scenario, cause every one hates that guy that doesn't communicate).

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Man, iiiiiintense subject, Para10.


Visualize what you'd like in your kids future. But, b4 I go on (and with due respect towards others' opinions) IMO, intense-capable video consoles should have never entered the family dwelling AT ALL (again, IMO) but, it's a different ball game now: Like when the cools kids are doing drugs so they feel the need to do the same and Master-Minded you into letting them do it. :-\


Regardless of other peoples' opinions, I'd do what it takes to keep them far away from the Addictive Consoles. I'd put that thing away and keep it off premises until many years later, perhaps. Guess what? I bought the much desired PS3 60GB Backward-compatible when it first came out... Played it once or twice... Rewrapped it and it's still in it's original box! Haven't taken it out in many years and I KNOW it's worth some good money! Still, it's there as it just rolled out of the factory for some-day use. Same with the very first PSP 1000!


Play those extremely violent games and feel for yourself how bad they really are. That's what kids are getting. Protect them. Your studies and other professionals don't lie. Right?


So, AGAIN: Visualize what you want for their future and work/shape your and their life around that. Then, compromise with them along the way til eventually you've accomplished with them what you want for them. All in good hopes.


You can do it!

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