Blog June, Day Twenty Six

I have found the hardest part of Blog June to be remembering to blog over the weekends. During the week it isn’t so much of an issue, because I do it during my lunch break at work (bare in mind that Mondays I have physio and hydro, and Tuesdays I either run errands, or sit on the sofa watching movies with the missus, because I am so exhausted).

So today I received some lovely encouragement from the International Librarians Network, who gave me a little bit of publicity. I felt rather chuffed to have my blog recognised in such an arena. Just a pity I have not lived up to the goals and ideals of Blog June (namely, that you are supposed to blog every day).

As for today, it major gaming news Saints Row IV has been refused classification in Australia, making it the first game to be banned since the introduction of the new R18+ rating for video games. This was because it “includes interactive, visual depictions of implied sexual violence which are not justified by context” and the use of  “illicit or proscribed drug use” as incentives in the game which is prohibited by the Boards guidelines.

Now, anyone who knows me, will know that the implication of making a mockery of sexual violence is not on. Just this morning I read a report for work which found that 59% of women in psychiatric care in Victoria had been sexually assaulted or harassed. That is not on.

It is interesting also, as ABCs show GoodGame gave Saints row IV their “Best Old Gen Console Game” award  at E3. The episode, which had been filmed during E3, aired just hours after the Board announced its decision. However, the content that Hex played at e3 would have almost certainly been just a short demo section of the game (which is not due for release until the end of August), while the Board would have had much more information about the games content, scripts and plot.

I have never played any of the Saints Row games, however my other half, Sam, said that the franchise is blatantly offensive at every turn, completely ridiculous, and equal opportunities offender, and a whole lot of fun. Now being a sociologist and a feminist, Sam is quite well versed in  cultural depictions oracism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism etc. She does however, tend to be quite biased, getting all angry about poor depictions of women, but now issue with poor depiction of men (as rare as they are).

So we shall see. I am not sure what to think. Either way, having the player participate in sexual violence as part of a video game is not on in any context.

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