Violence and criminal acts are part and parcel of the popular gaming series Grand Theft Auto, I mean, the clue’s in the name, but in a disturbing new trend, players are now using modifications to go one step further. Users have been posting videos of ‘virtual acts of rape’ online, committed by other players in the game, which have occurred after selecting a particular modification in the menu.
Mods are created by the public to add extra interest to a game, and as such, allow the players to do some pretty cool stuff. With GTA for example, recent mods enable users to play the whole game underwater, play as Superman or drive the Batmobile. However, some mods are not so innocent and fall under the ‘Naughty Stuff’ and ‘Very Naughty Stuff’ features. These mods allow players to change their character to a naked man or woman, and players can also manipulate other players into doing specific things, like performing a pole dance.
The problem is that using these mods, the player can simulate what appears to be a sex act on another player, by using a sex animation from another part of the menu, and if they have made themselves invincible, there’s nothing the victim can do about it.
Feedback to this new trend has been mostly outrage, with the general media labelling the new trend as ‘disturbing’ and others deciding not to post videos of the interactions online. There are others however, that say it is just a bit of fun, and as there is no evidence to suggest that video games encourage violence in the real world, we should not overreact. And when you consider that players use all forms of murder and kidnapping in the game, aren’t we being a tad sensitive when we then complain about raping people?
As for public opinion, it is divided, with some quite weird comments posted online including:
- ‘Such terrible that young people should be raping each other in games ! Raping should only take place in reality.’
- ‘Evidently, killing a space invader is encouraged, but raping one is morally indefensible.’
- ‘Should be worth noting its only a hand full of GTA Online players who even know how to do this, out of the hundreds of thousands (possibly even millions?) of players…’
- ‘Yes, it is absolutely fine. No problem at all. It is only a game.’
- ‘But I suppose if you think about it decades old family board game cluedo is about someone being beaten to death with a lead pipe or candlestick, shot or stabbed.’
Whilst opinion remains divided, this new trend has now created a bunch of vigilantes who have made it their mission to prowl around the online game and try and stop these players in their tracks.
As for the new mods, as of today, Rockstar Games, the makers of GTA has not commented on the virtual ‘rape’ mods, but if you’ve been affected, why not let us know your opinion in the comments box below. Did it upset you or were you not that bothered?