Pretty much every Game Stop in America was packed this past Monday night in anticipation of the release of Grand Theft Auto V, the newest game in the highly touted and controversial Grand Theft Auto series. From working men staying out late, to college students used to pulling all-nighters, to young kids dragging their parents out of bed, video game stores were bustling with lines of people waiting to get their hands on their favorite violent game.
For those of you unfamiliar with GTA, it’s a series created by Rockstar Games where the user takes on the roles of criminals, reeking destruction and havoc wherever he so chooses. Everything from car jacking, shooting, mugging, b*tch-slapping and having sex with hookers can be accomplished while playing the game. If having to call a hooker in real life weren’t sad enough, imagine spending a whole night doing it in a game!
Yes, running over hookers is a main attraction of the game. Paying hookers and THEN running them over is a popular feature, too. Well that’s one way to get your money back…
The internet has been basically sponsored by Grand Theft Auto V as of late (a nice change from Miley Cyrus‘s tongue), with articles, videos, vines, tweets and twats based on the violent game. People have even been putting together knockout compilation videos that consist of guys punching homeless men and women in the back of their heads.
The game is so freaking popular, it raked in $800 million in just one day. One day! Do you understand how insane that is? All for what, a game that allows users to shoot civilians and run-over hookers?! What does that say about us as a society? As the generation who is most consumed by the game, what does that say about us and our future?
I understand the thrill the GTA games provide. You can basically run around with no rules or limits, acting as recklessly as you please without any consequences. I see the overall appeal. But why the obsession? Is it because we’ve grown up watching so much violence in the movies and on TV that we desperately want to re-enact it? Is it our stress-reliever? Why did thousands of people wait on lines across America, so desperate to get the game the second it came out? How badly did everyone need to blow something up?
I went to a local Game Stop in NYC on Monday night with the Elite Daily crew to interact with some of the characters awaiting the game’s arrival. Some of these guys were so excited for midnight, you’d think the ball was dropping. Happy Murder year!!
Did one guy really think I was asking him how many hookers he was getting in real life!? Ha!
I remember being a counselor at camp a few years back, where all my campers did was play GTA. I’d come back to the bunk at night and hear a line like “I got three hand jobs tonight!” and before I could be proud of my young boys for becoming men, I’d quickly find out they were just talking about a hooker in GTA.
Even today I’ve watched some of my friends play and wondered what all the excitement was about. Was it funny? Yes. Was it somewhat cool? Sure. But did I really want to spend my entire night watching a guy run around in his underwear, punching random women, and drop-kicking mimes? I think I’m good.
Let me be clear– I don’t mean to completely sh*t on the game and everyone who has ever played it. I do think most people understand the difference between a video game and real life, and don’t let their actions in the game carry over into reality. I just don’t understand the cult-like obsession.
I think GTA is a good way to spend a few hours, just not your entire day. As good as online hookers may be, I assure you, real life sex is much better!