NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" Games

March 23, 2009 -

The release of GTA Chinatown Wars for the Nintendo DS is a defining moment for video games, writes Seth Schiesel of the New York Times.

While video games have been incorporating more mature themes for at least a decade, the NYT's game critic views the arrival of Grand Theft Auto on the generally kid-centric handheld as a definitive statement that the medium is no longer for children only.

What makes [GTA Chinatown Wars] so significant is the system it has been made for, Nintendo’s hand-held DS... [so far] the DS has found its most fervent customers among children.

Yet like “Scarface,” “Goodfellas” and other gangster movies, Chinatown Wars is definitely not for children. Recent Grand Theft Auto games go quite a bit further in their references to hedonism (some might call it depravity) than almost anything coming out of Hollywood...

With Rockstar making Chinatown Wars exclusively for the DS, and with Nintendo approving the game for its system, the two companies are making a bold and vital statement to the public. Chinatown Wars is likely to force many to realize that just because something is called a video game does not mean it is appropriate for children...

 

This is a crucial moment in the maturation of both the game industry and in the mass public conception of what a game is and can be. In just the last few years games have gone from the whipping boy of politicians to a somewhat grudgingly accepted element of popular culture. But there is still a long way to go...

Comments

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" Games

Mew thinks youer 10 years off but whatever.... its ncie to see the mainstream wake up if just alittle...

 


Gore,Violence,Sexauilty,Fear,Emotion these are but modes of transportation of story and thought, to take them from society you create a society of children and nannys, since adults are not required.


http://zippydsmlee.wordpress.com


Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Let's renegotiate them.

---

http://zippydsm.deviantart.com/

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" ...

 "Recent Grand Theft Auto games go quite a bit further in their references to hedonism (some might call it depravity) than almost anything coming out of Hollywood... "

I find this quote pretty interesting. I can't really think of something in a GTA game that hasn't been in multiple movies. The idea that they go further than 'almost anything' coming out of Hollywood is fairly ridiculous. Hell, recently I've been rewatching the Friday the 13th series and in just those movies the murders are far more brutal than anything in a GTA game (spear gun through the eye, multiple machete impalings, choked out with a length of barbed wire, axes through the skull, etc.) not to mention the multiple sex scenes and 'horrendous' bare breasts.

And I think it's safe to say that Friday the 13th is not anywhere near the pinnacle of sex and violence in movies.

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" Games

*BANGS HEAD AGAINST WALL REPEATILY*

Yessssssssssssssss video games are not just for kids. Yes there have been adult games as far as video games have been invented. Is it just dawning on these people now that this medium happens to not be just for kids?!

I would have said that the defining moment was around '94 to '96 when we had video games with a budget of several millions of dollars to make said game (rivaling then movie production budgets). Sometimes hiring A-list and B-list movie actors to do video and/or voice work. Some games then even had....gasp....actual nudity and have mature language (see Phantasmagoria and Ripper [with Christopher Walken! :P] ).

We have come a long ways since the days of Pitfall and Super Mario Brothers.

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" ...

Funny thing is, I was in a Futureshop yesterday and they didn't even have it lined in anywhere. I don't know if they're afraid to carry it or just filled in a sold out gap with something else.

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" ...

Agreed. It's a statement alright, but will anyone listen.

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" ...

 "In just the last few years games have gone from the whipping boy of politicians to a somewhat grudgingly accepted element of popular culture."

...last I checked, games were still the whipping boy of politicians.

 

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" ...

Big N has been doing M rated games since before there was a rating system.

Mortal Kombat SNES and the Resident Evil series, for example. Why is this such a big deal?

------ Ago. Perceptum. Teneo.

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" ...

 

The first Mortal Kombat on SNES was censored, but the second one was uncensored (with a label on the box with a warning).  Most of the game on SNES was censored actually.  But because of the ESRB and the first amendment.  Nintendo can now have M-rated game.  Sadly, if the Wii had a graphic of the 360 and PS3.  Nintendo can have Fallout 3, Bioshock, F.E.A.R. series, Resident Evil 5, Call of Duty 4 (even though the DS was ok).  That would make Nintendo more hardcore then kiddie (even though, the 360 and PS3 has share of family-friendly games too)

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" ...

Doom was on the SNES as well I believe.

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" ...

 

The SNES version was censored because of the blood and gore and Satanic theme.  The GBA was dumb down to get a T-rating.   

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" ...

Cause people still see Nintendo as the "kiddie console."

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" ...

It sucks that it's easier to dig yourself into a hole than it is to get out, isn't it? Life's rules are like the game show Jeopardy.

GameSnooper

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" Games

The Brain Training games have had a lot to do about making the DS seen as a console for older gamers, rather than the new GTA. Those are also games not aimed at kids (although they can play them).

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" ...

While I do think it is a brave move by both Nintendo and Take-Two, many people forget that Nintendo have allowed many other MATURE rated games on their consoles and handhelds.

Anyone remember Conker's Bad Fur Day?

While you will keep the parents and family happy with Wii Sports and Wii Fit. The same group will always critisize you with anything associated with GTA and any of Rockstar's other games.

While great games like Mario, Zelda, Donkey Kong and even Pokemon don't even get the mainstreem attention they honestly deserve and only those games get the true recognition they deserve for the gamers who have grown up with those classic Nintendo games.

Nintendo all the way for me, M rated games for the Wii too.

 

 

TBoneTony

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" ...

Or people will still let their kids buy it and then act all appaled when they finally take a moment to look at it 3 months later.

This is an amazingly out of touch article that is probably only written because the editor said "Hey its Rockstar, Rockstar is cool with gamers am i rite?" and ordered a piece.

The Honest Game - http://www.thehonestgame.org

The Honest Game - http://www.thehonestgame.org

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" Games

I kinda knew that the DS wouldn't be just for kids. Just because it's got a Nintendo sticker slapped onto it does not make it a kid-friendly system. Look at the South Park game for the N64.


Steam ID: canadakiller

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" Games

You know what I miss?  Last generation.  When an M rated game hit Gamecube or GBA, nothing about it was mentioned.  It was simply an M-Rated game.  Now if an M-Rated game hits Wii or DS, it's some grand line being drawn in the sand to show games are for everyone... pathetic.

Wall of Text Simulation- Insert coin to continue.

Wall of Text Simulation- Insert coin to continue.

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" Games

I think they missed out on something from the GBA...

http://www.rockstargames.com/grandtheftauto/gba/

So, yeah...

Re: NY Times: GTA Chinatown Wars One of "Most Important" Games

Sadly, it's not going to open the eyes of certain people, and for soem it will be further "proof" that Take two is conspiring to sell M rated games directly to minors.

 

And what about the M rated games on the Wii?

 
Forgot your password?
Username :
Password :

Poll

Will the FCC preempt state laws that limit municipal broadband services?:

Shout box

You're not permitted to post shouts.
PHX CorpI'm going to do a test stream later today, if anyone is intrested07/31/2014 - 2:40pm
Andrew EisenYes, I'm such a big Nintendo dork that I read Nintendo's quarterly financial reports.07/31/2014 - 2:09pm
Andrew EisenCool tidbit - Mario Kart 8 sales account for more than half of total Wii U software sales for the last quarter even though it was only available for the last third.07/31/2014 - 2:09pm
Andrew EisenStill a pretty cool promotion. Unfortunately for me, I'm not interested in purchasing Mario Kart 8 and I already owned or didn't want any of the free games on offer.07/31/2014 - 1:43pm
Andrew EisenInteresting that EU had 10 games to choose from while North America only had four.07/31/2014 - 1:41pm
MaskedPixelanteIt certainly worked, I probably would never have bought Mario Kart 8 if it didn't come with a free copy of Wind Waker HD.07/31/2014 - 1:14pm
Andrew EisenI imagine will see similar promotions like "Buy Mario Kart 8 get a download code for one of these specific games" but almost certainly not for all of its (however you would define) biggest releases.07/31/2014 - 11:24am
MaskedPixelanteI wonder if Nintendo is going to be doing "buy one get one free" promos for all their biggest releases going forward.07/31/2014 - 10:48am
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.mcvuk.com/news/read/special-report-retail-revolt-over-pc-code-strippers/013614007/31/2014 - 8:27am
ZippyDSMleeWouldn't they be able to afford and get done in a timely manner a general gba emluator for the 3DS? It seems to me if they want to make money off sales they need to do it.07/31/2014 - 7:25am
Sora-ChanAmbassador program, that's what I was looking for. Anyway the other games that have been made no longer exclusive to the early adopters got updates in their software. It'll only be a matter of time more than likely for the GBA to get the same treatment.07/31/2014 - 5:35am
Sora-ChanI might be naming it incorrectly when I say "founder" i mean the program for earlier adopters.07/31/2014 - 5:34am
Sora-Chanthe 3DS's GBA emulator was a rush job due to the founder program. No other GBA titles have been released on the 3DS yet. If/When they do get around to it, they'll more than likely update the emulation software.07/31/2014 - 5:32am
Zenemulator...it's not just a slap job that makes "some" work..they do it for each which is why they work so well. I would rather have the quality over just a slap job.07/30/2014 - 5:48pm
ZenMatthew there is a difference between "worked" and "accurate". You play the Nintendo VC titles they play as damn close to the original as possible. The PSP would just run them as best they could, issues and all. And Masked...EACH VC title has their own07/30/2014 - 5:48pm
MaskedPixelanteOnce again, the 3DS already HAS a GBA emulator, it just can't run at the same time as the 3DS OS.07/30/2014 - 4:54pm
Matthew Wilsonyou cant street pass in ds mode ether, and if moders can make a gba emulator that runs very well on the psp as I understand it. you are telling me that Nintendo devs are not as good as moders?07/30/2014 - 4:49pm
Zenperformance. Halo 1 and 2 worked great because they actually did custom work on each of them...just like Nintendo does now lol07/30/2014 - 4:08pm
Zenexisting hardware while the GBA has to be emulated completely. Same reason the 360 couldn't run most Original Xbox games correctly, or had issues because they just did "blanket approach" for their emulation which led to game killing bugs or horrible07/30/2014 - 4:07pm
ZenSora/Matthew: It's not just Miiverse, but the whole idea of streetpass and things like that would be affected if the OS is not running. And just because a 3DS game can be downloaded and run does not mean that GBA can as easily. Those 3DS games use the07/30/2014 - 4:06pm
 

Be Heard - Contact Your Politician