5 Ways the Government is Getting Involved With Your Video Games
What is the one thing an arcade cabinet can still offer that your home console can't? The answer is bitchin' peripherals built right into the hardware. Probing the seas in a submarine seat while playing Ocean Hunter, or the satisfying click-clack of the shotgun controller in Carnevil, that sort of thing. It's damn near the only reason to waste the quarters anymore.
If you live in Massachusetts, though, that thrill may be a lot harder to find. After the Sandy Hook massacre state officials decided to ban any violent video games from state-owned rest stops. Prompted by a letter from Andrew and Tracey Hyams, who witnessed a gamer playing Time Crisis at a rest stop on Christmas Eve last year, the Department of Transportation removed any game that involved a gun peripheral as inappropriate. Titles like Pac-Man and Galaga were allowed to stay.
Earlier this year the city of Tuscon ran a buyback program where people could turn in their firearms for a $50 grocery gift card. The city where Gabrielle Giffords and 18 other people were shot was aiming to do something about gun violence in their area. Whether or not the buyback program will affect the number of crimes involving guns in Tuscon is undetermined, but you can at least see some logic in it. People were shot with guns, ask people to turn in their guns.
Back in Massachusetts, they went with video games again. Melrose Mayor Robert Dolan asked kids to turn in their Rated-M games for both gift certificates and "home-work free nights." A similar proposal from Southington, Conn was ditched after gamer opposition swelled in the wake of reports that the games would be snapped into pieces and incinerated.