Following the Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting, thousands of internet users attacked video games for their realistic violence and lack of morals. Back in 1991, video game rage also existed but in very different, yet oddly similar, terms.
When asked about several games that involved unrealistic looking violence, one parent responded that they would not buy the game because:
“Have things gone a bit too far?”
The news anchor then asked:
“Where should the anger be directed? Not at the parents, but at the what? The manufacturers.”
Even back in 1991, news media was directing video games towards their psychological effects, noting:
“Psychologists’ offices might get more crowded this holiday season, just in time for Christmas.”
The report as you will see is full of sensationalized claims that would ultimately lead to current dialogue regarding games that became more realistic and, in many cases, far more sadistic.
One big difference in 1991? The reporter seemed almost as mad that the Super Nintendo would dare be priced at “twice as much as the old system, and you can’t mix and match.”
One year later, the popular and violent Wolfenstein 3D emerged, and it was followed by the blood code friendly Mortal Kombat franchise.
The news report does a good job of highlighting the fact that there will always be detractors who attack the realistic violence of video games. In 1991, commenters thought video games were too violent, but they weren’t calling them “shoot up a school violent.”
In 2012, the dialogue remains largely the same with more people willing to openly attack gamers as their favorite gaming titles become ultra-realistic in there tone and visual aspects.
Here’s what video game outrage looked like in 1991: