The Game’s Up — Or Down — Certainly Gone Sideways

I’m suprised at how my relationship with mechanical games has changed over the years.

I adored pinball machines as a child. Still think the most inventive ones are marvels of loopy cleverness. And thought the first computerized arcades were a logical and equally fun extension. By the time I was trying out Sim City and Doom 2 on the home computer, I was convinced games were going to become enveloping aesthetic adventures on a par with films and novels.

But I was wrongo tango.

Laura Miller does an outstanding job of explaining why in this piece. The tricky part is that Grossman’s On Killing is a haunting, utterly persuasive book. But there’s no question his shrieks about the pernicious effects of violent video games are identical to the alarms raised about dirty books, crazy comix and sicko music — those who enjoy them before committing monstrous acts were monsters to start with. And the whole “the OOGLY truth is hidden from us” reminds me of what they used to say about why the TV industry was getting away with causing the downfall of humanity.But with her inspired comments-section comparison, Laura nails what will probably forever hold the gamer expereince from beccoming what I once imagined.

I mean, I think it’s telling that throwback-tech like Angry Birds and Candy Crush Saga are biggies unto this day.

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