Video game violence strikes controversy after release of Grand Theft Auto V

Logan Tesmer and Logan Tesmer

video-game-controllerBy Staff Writer: Logan Tesmer

The first Grand Theft Auto game was released as a top down game by Rockstar Gaming. The first two titles the company published were not successful, but after Rockstar released GTA III, the platform was a 3D open world game, bringing a whole new way to play and enjoy the game.

The GTA games are based in fictional cities, where you play as a character who lives his life as a criminal. The story lines are largely crime based and there is a lot of killing involved. For many years the GTA series has been called out for having too much violence in their games; lawyers have even tried convincing families of murder victims to accuse the game series of “making their loved ones commit the crime.”

According to The Guinness World Records 2008 and 2009, it is the most controversial video game series in history, with articles that include accusations of corrupting gamers and connection to real life crimes.

Using a video game to try to get out of being accused of committing a crime, or accusing the game of corrupting someone’s mind and making them “violent”, is just another way people try to get others on their side. There’s no real evidence that these claims have any significance.

There is no relation between the GTA series and the crime rate since the game was released in 1997. The only thing that has increased since 1997 that has a relation to the game is how much money it has made. According to, the game’s publisher, Take Two, was quick to note that GTA V’s three days needed to reach $1 billion in sales makes it the fastest selling property across all forms of entertainment.  Grand Theft Auto V looks set to outsell the entire global music industry with the music industry record of $1.4 billion in a month.

With sales like that, trying to stop production on their games is just not going to happen. Even with all of the violence and criminal activity, the GTA series is still being bought by parents and given to their underage children.

If parents are complaining about the game ruining their child, they shouldn’t let them buy the game. The game is rated M for mature for a reason.

I can understand that a person may play the game and feel like he or she has the capability to perform the crimes or violence displayed in the games or maybe the game is just a way that someone can express their violent side. It really all depends on how you were raised and your genetics, nature vs. nurture. I grew up on the Grand Theft Auto games; I have been playing them since I was at least seven years old. Is that bad parenting? No, because I have no intention of committing a crime or performing an act of violence upon anyone. The games never affected me because it’s not in my nature to have a violent side. However, others may feel the need to commit crimes or act upon things using violence, but that’s not because of a videogame, that’s because it was bound to happen to them with our without the game.