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Duke Blamed for Shooting. But why?

When I first went to the 3D Realms homepage and read about the shooting in Brazil I was horrified. Yet another Act of violence linked to video games. Apparently Mateus da Costa Meira, a 24-year-old medical student in Sao Paulo Brazil went on a shooting spree and a movie theatre at city mall killing three and wounding eight. He's reported as being an avid gamer and police are linking the rampage specifically to video games, specifically to Duke Nukem. I was disgusted and this act of senseless violence but what I was also disgusted by what the articles had said and also what they hadn't said. Don't get me wrong. I'm not making fun of what happened. I think it's terrible to take another human's life. What I am doing to criticizing how the press is bandwagon jumping and playing up the anti-game angle that the media has been riding since the first school shootings started.

First off, all three articles listed on the 3D Realms homepage are virtually identical, leading me to believe the "reporter" did a simple cut-paste' as his research. Second they got some facts wrong and the articles come off with a distorted image of the circumstances and the true nature of the event.

The articles stresses that Duke 3D carries "violence" and "adult language" warning labels. What game doesn't have these today? Isn't it a rule that games have to carry warnings? Also this guy is 24. He is well of age to decide what games to play, violent or not. The articles lead the reader to believe that Duke is the only game of it's kind(content wise), which as we all know is far from true.

Next the article says police found three computers and over a hundred CD-ROMs in his apartment. Well hold the phone Chief. Everyone knows CD-ROMs are illegal to own in 48 states. Come on. They make it sound like this guy was stockpiling contraband. I've got two computers and well over three hundred CD's and disks myself, as do most avid users.
"Police suspected Meira followed the game step by step, including his choice of weapons and shooting position at the Sao Paulo theatre."
Ok. That got my attention. This is where the articles really start to twist things.
"In the game, the player can find a similar automatic gun before entering a cinema building."
Huh. I wasn't aware you could get hold of a Ripper in real life. In fact most of Duke's weapons are fantastical. The next line says before the shooting in the cinema, Meira entered the theatre's washroom, just like you can in the game. Then he fired a round into one of the mirrors. According to the article:
"In the game, mirrors spectacularly crack when hit by bullets, sometimes revealing hidden weapons or useful objects."
That's totally wrong. Mirrors only shatter when near an explosion and they never reveal weapons or items. By using creative writing they made it sound like this guy was looking for a Heathkit and reloads for his RPG.

This second last paragraph explained it all and showed what leads the authorities should be following:
"Authorities said Meira may also have been under the influence of drugs. They also said he had in the past received psychological treatment for stress-related problems."


Well there's a cause nobody thought of. Forget the hits of LSD this guy took the morning before, it was all the video game. It sound's like the poor man had enough problems to begin with. You can't make me believe this guy was A-OK until one day he plays Duke and decides to kill a bunch of people at the local mall. I'm sorry. It doesn't work like that. This wasn't some kid that was too young to know what was real and what wasn't. It was a grown man with psychological problems who probably needed medical care. You can't blame a fictional character or a form of entertainment for this man not getting help before it was too late.



Well that's all I have to say. I'm expecting to get some flak from writing this but I encourage you to e-mail your responses to the e-mail below and discuss this article in our soon-to-come forums.

- Article by: Maveric

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