Tag Archives: Video Games

Media effects theories

It’s thought that Media can effect certain people of certain ages in ways that are never fully figured out, teenagers can be middle of the road since they get influenced by certain media but during the first 8 years of their lives, children develop certain skills in their way of growing up  since they will be learning certain things.

It’s easy to say that video games can be a way of children learning to be violent though games have rating on them showing what the right age for them to play the game is, if children are playing a game they shouldn’t then that could be the parents problem since they got them the game and they let them play it in the first place since some games such as Yakuza and Grand Theft Auto (GTA) tend to be too realistic for younger audience’s that they will either develop those skills or be scared from those actions but at the same time their are games intended to younger players for kids as young as 3 to 12 which limits the violence, bad moments and nasty habits on what happens. However that can also be the opposite since the Norway shooter admitted that he played Modern Warfare 2 just to get the ideas of going on his shooting spree, because of that Norway has banned most first person shooter games. This tends to be a trend with certain countries banning certain games for what there is in violence and content, many counties banning GTA, Call of Duty and other games in those lines for violence, things that might offend cultures, moments that happen and   people won’t like and others like, nudity, gambling, sex or racism.

However a lot of TV and Music video’s can come into play since shows like Power Rangers and Teenage mutant ninja turtles while being kids shows tend to have a lot of violence to them dispite those shows being good vs evil however shows like World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) which used to be extremely violent for older viewers turned into a Parental guidance (PG) based show which would mean family based yet the violence can be over the top at times dispite those shows telling them to never try what they see at home for their safety, yet there can still be complaints about those shows for the violence, nasty bits of the shows or certain characters being too scary like Lord Zedd, Krang and Mark Henry. TV shows do try and make good with their target audience doing the right things but still get hammered in complaints. one example would be Tom and Jerry since while it’s more slapstick there tends to be more violence than any other show dispite being marketed for kids. As far as music video’s there can be moments that can be over the top moments such as characters doing nasty acts like fingering someone, alcohol drinking, women not wearing not much clothing and lip synching words that were censored in the song. swearing in music can be an issue at times since CD and download’s of the songs will go uncensored meaning if younger people are listening then a child just heard a nasty word though most CD’s do have a label saying what nasty’s there would be in the songs.

Film however also gets a lot of the issues, It was said that the 2 child murders of 1993 were influenced to kill just by watching child’s play 3 and a lot of backlash came to the developers who said that the kids must of been unstable to begin with. A lot of movies get the same treatment, some being banned in certain countries for portrayal of certain races, a lot of violence that can be brutal and at times unwatchable, fear of imitation of certain actions, scenes of rape and sexual abuse, heavy uses of blood and unwanted imagery. A good example is a film from Serbia called a Serbian film or as its called there Srpski Film in which has a heavy pornography based story which leads to a lot of violence, rape, murder and unknown amount of blood and Serbian swearing. At least 6 countries banned the movie with some versions being edited in others dispite the negative reception. Another example was a Clockwork Orange where director Stanley Kubrick who was British had a lot of angry fans on him saying his movie was too violent and gory and the film became banned in the UK until his death, the USA showed the movie but rated X and having to cut certain scenes and censor some moments for the films gory nature. Many people would assume this would be a copycat effect in that someone of a certain ages watches something and because of what goes on in the film their would be a slight chance that she or He’d go and start acting the way a character would and start doing the actions. In reality parents should limit what a child should watch or play and ensure that the child does the right things, learn what they would need to learn and don’t do the bad thing which could make them become a nasty child if not careful.

To say that video games and Movies are the truth to all violence in society is saying that God is the police, Parents should do the right things and teach their kids not to do certain acts, schools should teach them what’s right and wrong with the media and kids should be aware of what the right way in life is. copying something because they saw it on TV should not be a factor in their behaviour and they should be fully controlable for their actions.


Media product questionnaire

Below is a questionnaire that I have constructed which will hopefully help give necessary feedback on how the producers of two major game products that have similarities through online multiplayer and campaign and how the products use the specific uses of layout of the two trailers and what effectiveness it has towards the target audience. The questionnaire will consist of different question types such as multiple choice, open and closed questions. The questionnaire will also feature questions which help get to know a bit about the audience such as their hobbies and how old they are.

Questionnaire:

1) Are you male or female?

2) What is your age?

3) What is your ethnic origin?

4) What are your hobbies?

5) What is your preferred choice of gaming device? Ps3, Xbox or PC? Why?

6) Do you use the internet for other entertainment besides gaming? If yes what is it?

7) How often do you use the console?

8) How many game devices do you posses?

9) Do you buy games for the storyline, online multiplayer or both?

10) How do you purchase the product? Internet or shop?

11) Which of the two trailers do you prefer? Why?

Links to the two trailers: Link to Battlefield 3 trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=khXzREHkLmY

Link to Modern Warfare 3 trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z7xL5Tz7VUk


Media products and their audiences. Analysis of Battlefield 3

Selection of content:

Words and images: In the trailer the first image shown is the content rating of the game letting the audience know what age group the game is mainly aimed at and what sort of content will be involved, in this case blood, intense violence and strong language is shown and heard in the game. The words in this image are bold and coloured black standing out from the background. The next image shown is showing the audience how many awards the game has won this will help in selling the product better as it tells the audience how good the game will be overall. The colour of this image is coloured red making it stand out from the black background.

Sound: The trailer begins with a low sound of music heard underneath the game footage, as it continues the sound of characters and music starts to increase in pace and volume until it reaches a point where a character is heard shouting, the music then stops for a split second just before everything becomes fast paced and the increase of sound and music which adds to the intense footage of the game.

Sequences: The trailer has two main sequences. The first sequence is showing and telling the audience hints of what the game is about, who some of the main characters are and footage of some of the game features. E.g. showing short clips in first person view of using warfare machinery, the atmosphere of being in first person and how that is used to add realism by involving the audience more. It also shows short clips of piloting jets which let the audience know that this will be one of the in game features. The second sequence shows the audience how destructive and fast paced the game is, it also shows most of it in first person to give the game a more realistic feel and to involve the audience more in what is going on within the trailer. Compared to a game, which uses similar techniques and features the trailer for Call of Duty modern warfare 3 is a good example as it uses many different sequences, which show the audience the different layouts, warfare machinery, locations and gameplay within the game.

Colours: The colours of the trailer changes from the two sequences. The first sequence colours are very dark and showing very little light making the game look gritty and dark this also adds to the seriousness of the first sequence. As the second sequence starts the first thing shown is a bright light which is then followed by brightly coloured footage to fully show the detail of the games foreground and background.

Fonts: The trailer only shows two bits of font, which are at the beginning and at the end of the trailer. The font at the beginning is all capitalised and coloured white and gold making it standout from the red background. The font at the end of the trailer is capitalised, large and coloured white making it easy to read and stand out from the dark background.

Construction of content:

Narratives: The trailer has different narratives that are all connected to one main narrative. Each of the narratives are short giving little bits of the story away and are explained to the audience by different characters in the game and by doing this it shows and tells the audience each of the characters role in the game.

Layout: The layout of the trailer is split into two sections. The first section is story based and cinematic as if the audience was watching a short film; it also switches between first person and third person. The first person view involves the audience as if they were part of the story and seeing parts of it through the eyes of the protagonist. The third person view allows the audience to view parts of the game from a distance, which is used to show the surroundings of the game. E.g. there is a shot of war ships and an aircraft carrier in the ocean while a pair of fighter jets that fly at the game camera while showing the vastness of some of the games layouts.

Codes and conventions:

Linguistic: The linguistics of the trailer is all representations of everyday people and their goals. One of the characters is an Arabic leader who’s linguistics and characteristics are based around terrorism and world domination this is a representation of what is going on in the world today. The two other groups of characteristics are based on soldiers and their leaders/captains. The soldier’s linguistics is mainly following orders and nothing else. The linguistics of the leaders/captains is mainly revolved around authority and leadership, giving and shouting orders.

Visual: The visual side of the trailer is made to look realistic this is done by how realistic the textures look e.g. roughness or smoothness of metal on vehicles and weapons. Shadowing and lighting when running past windows, clothing and facial expressions. E.g. movement of mouths, eyes and reactions when spoken to. Also the movement of soldiers and how they crouch lie down and run, the creases in clothes and bags. They also add streams of light that show bits of dust floating around which also add to the realism of lighting and first person as this is what can bee seen through our eyes in real life.

Audio: The first part of the trailer the audio is very quite where the characters are clearly heard so the audience can hear and understand the different bits of the story. As the first part of the trailer ends a man is heard shouting which kick starts the start of the second part of trailer where the audio is greatly increased in volume and pace matching the speed of the footage and hype for the audience watching.

Symbolic: The end part of the trailer is symbolic as it is the producers own logo, picture and music that represent the games inviduality and making it unique from other games and ideas that have a similar theme or context. A good example of this is Call of duty modern warfare, where their logo is coloured green and they only use the initials of modern warfare (MW), which is placed against a black background. The image which tells the audience how many awards the game has won is coloured red which is a symbolic warning colour which we associate ourselves with blood or violence making us more aware of this colour therefore the audience will automatically fix themselves on this and read the bit of information the company wants to get across to their audience. The trailer also shows a American soldier walking towards the camera as bits of rubble fly past him at the screen, it then cuts to a shot of the soldier standing facing the audience with warfare machinery in the background giving him a lone wolf and invincible look. The background is coloured blue representing the American colours and a white title representing purity.

Technical: The technical side of the trailer are the camera movements of the trailer as it crosses between first person views and third person views showing the audience different parts of game footage from different angles, heights and different situations. Example for first person view: The first person camera involves the audience in important conversations with the game characters involving them more in the story line and showing first person views of using machinery or doing something dramatic keeping the audience interested. An example of for third person view is showing the audience the games vastness of backgrounds, locations and how detailed it is. It also shows some of the games features that the player will be able to control and be a part of. For example jets and warships. Another technical convention of the game is the quick editing showing snippets of gameplay which adds to the fast action pace theme of the game in the second part of the trailer which also helps keeps the audience interested and isn’t boring.

Modes of address: The games trailer’s modes of address consist of a lot of action packed footage that shows different fast paced action gameplay and situations that the game puts the player in such as running chasing a main target around taking out enemy targets while buildings are falling down creating large scale destruction, vehicles are exploding on the streets as the player is running past, civilians are running for there lives in all directions and constant battles take place throughout the street as the player tries o reach the target, all this is viewed through first person. Underneath the destructive footage that a fast paced up beat soundtrack is played to add to the suspension and adrenaline rush which helps keep the audience watching and pumped up. As all this is going on the camera remains in first person which helps keep the audience interested as it makes the audience feel they are the character they are playing adding to the realism of the game.From the information gathered the target audience for this product appeals more to a male audience between the ages of 18-30 as the game puts the player in a war zone environment for every stage of the game and has a consistent war theme throughout the game. The game is also a very male dominant game and only feature one female character that the player takes the role of but does not see her due to the constant first person view of the game.


Is T.V Bad for Children Questionnaire and Feedback!

Age: 16-20 = 10       21-30 = 3       30+ = 1

Gender: Male = 10   Female = 10

Ethnic Origin: White British = 14

Q1. Do you think that children at an early stage should be watching T.V?

Yes = 9          No = 2

Three people had answered both answers (debating whether it’s good or not)

Q2. From what age do you think children should be allowed to watch T.V?

1-3 = 6           4-6 = 8           6-9 = 0           10+ = 0

Q3. Do you think children can learn from watching T.V?

Yes = 13        No = 1

Why Yes:

  • They can learn life skills
  • Colours and actions influence development
  • Educational programmes can help develop children x2
  • There are specific channels that involve learning
  • Educational x2
  • Cbeebies have new shows x2
  • Enhance their learning

Why No:

  • There are few educational shows

Also some people did not answer these questions, to which is why the results are varied.

Continue reading


If Games Were Real – Violence

This is a video I found when looking through some debates about violence in reality and the connection to games.  The style of the video is not important here, but you will notice with most of their game examples violence or extreme panic is used, being incorporated into the elements of the game changing the way we then look on society.


Do Video Games Influence Real Life Violence?

 

Debates into whether video games affect behaviour and violence in society have been around for a while.  There appears to be more than just games affecting people’s attitudes but it is implied that games do have a lot to do with it.  Cultivation theory states that when an audience spends a lot of time immersed in a media product they begin to believe that it is a true reflection on the world.  When the first episode of the popular US series ‘Friends’ was broadcast many woman began to copy Jennifer Aniston’s hairstyle.  This copycat behaviour could also be applied to violent games, copying the action seen onscreen.  The game promotes violence by rewarding the player when they murder in the game by advancing them to the next level.  This is then seen as a good thing and being able to do it in a ‘cool’ way then may attract them to do it in real life and the real life consequences are never shown in the game and the reality of right and wrong have become clouded based on cultivation theory.  Some however argue that games are used a stress relief, as a means to do the things we never would or could in real life.

 

Studies have shown that after playing shooter games players become desensitised to violence and killing removing the emotional impact of brutal acts making violence more like a game to be achieved.  This fuels the mind and urges people to test their gamer skills on a bigger level, in real life.  The nature of the game also effects how people react with others, Call of Duty is a game based around war but more than that patriotism, serving and protecting your country.  GTA4 is about a foreigner coming to America and murdering people and stealing cars so way people interpret the games will also vary.  Games act like an experience so you can live out another life without actually doing those things.  Some argue that they teach teenagers about violence so they can see that it is a horrible thing when done in real life and can discourage people from doing it as they know the results of their actions.

 

Fifia is a game that allows the player to play as a professional footballer; those that play the game have an active interest in the sport and some play the game in reality.  This can be related to shooter/fighting games where players enjoy it so much they want to experience it in real life.  Being a creative outlet or stress reliever appears to be the common counter argument to these statements but still on either side of the argument video games alone don’t seem to affect people behaviour there must be another variable or even a few at work beyond the blame of games.


Do Video Games Influence Real Life Violence?

Dr. Patrick Markey is an associate professor at Villanova University in America studying psychology.  He has been asked to report on shootings to give an in depth focus as to why the individual did what they did.  Confirmation bias is when people take note and favour information that backs up their theory and put aside evidence that does not.  In the argument to whether video games influence violent behaviour different people have their own bias opinions.  Audiences don’t just passively take in media they watch on television, they will take it in differently questioning how the information being displayed affects them.  When watching the news relaying a story of a bomb attack in America some may react to the terrible loss of life meaninglessly others may see it as a message that those behind it with extremist views can strike anywhere.  This is one story being told to the audience but depending on the individual’s point of view they will take different thoughts away from it.  Media isn’t necessarily objective but subjective based on the individual.  Confirmation bias works in a similar way, when a violent shooting takes place the news may report that the individual played violent war games and so that must mean that violent games do encourage real life harm as there is now an example.  That individual believing this may then ignore the statistics that 1 in every 4 gamers play violent war games but there are not a quarter of all gamers out on a murderous rampage.

 

Dr. Patrick Markey looked at the way research was done to suggest video games do promote violence.  One group will play violent games for 15 minutes and the other group non-violent games.  They individuals would then fill out a questionnaire to do with the length of hypothetical jail sentences and pranks on people.  The argument states that these hypothetical questions don’t prove if people actions towards others would bring them to violence plus the fact that the questions weren’t directly about the individual being violent.  To counter this if the majority of results from the violent video game group involved being nastier with pranks etc. than the non violent games group then there would be a noticeable difference in the psychological thought process about actions towards others.

 

Studies cannot directly measure the correlation between violent video games and violent people; there are many other factors that come into making someone violent towards others.  The family environment, social attitudes, income, availability and easiness of violence are just a few factors that link into this debate.  Some argue that violence is not encouraged from video games, although it may only be true that games are not solely responsible.  The environment around the individual can influence their decisions but videogames could be a considerable factor, the virtual experience of anarchy and violence may only assure them that violent behaviour is the answer.  Many people play violent videogames and when that is mixed with other situations can result in violent behaviour but then even this can’t be accurately proved.  It’s like saying that eating cereal predict violent behaviour as that morning it’s likely the individual eat cereal for breakfast however this doesn’t prove cereal is a catalyst for violent behaviour in a similar way that videogames don’t.