originals\ Nov 7, 2011 at 5:41 pm

PETA, Battlefield 3, and Your Level of Concern?


I feel like every time an animal dies in a video game there is a PETA backlash.  In Battlefield 3 you kill a rat with a knife and throw it away in the third mission.  Apparently this is enough to enrage PETA.  The animal right organization has criticized BF3 for “animal cruelty.”  For it may start with rats, but what next?

What’s next?  I’ll tell you, its people.  The ratio to people stabbed vs. rats / animals stabbed in BF3 would not be favorable to the human race.  That single rat may be the only animal killed in the entire game.  This is troubling. I’ve been playing Dark Souls and I have killed a looooooooot of rats.

I get it, really.  Games like Battlefield 3 are supposed to be “realistic.”  In a title like Dark Souls, and fantasy games in general, take the realism out of it.  Giant undead rats – sure, kill a million of them.  Yet ONE rat in a “realistic type” of game and it’s all over.   

In that leaked footage of Modern Warfare 3, there already has been that incident with the little girl exploding in London.  The game has yet to be released and this footage has already been hyped.  There is shock value – and it sells.  In no game should someone want to kill a kitten or a human baby; that is barbaric.  What Modern Warfare 3 and Battlefield 3 are trying to do is show the ‘realness’ of war.  In battle, do animals and children die – yes.

Can a game show realness without murdering the things we find sacred and cute?  Probably, but part of the shock value is the death of something so loved.  This trend is going to continue, there is a desire to one up each other.  Does violence in video games make their players more violent?  Probably – but to the extent certain folk claim they do, probably not.  I’ve played BF3, I have zero intention of stabbing a rat.

Unfortunately for PETA, there is going to be a lot of animal death in the near future in video games.  After watching some Skyrim footage: horses, bears, wolfs, and various other animals will die.  Get that new criticism ready.

About The Author
Andrew Clouther Human, historian, teacher, writer, reviewer, gamer, League of Pralay, Persona fanboy, and GameZone paragon - no super powers as of yet. Message me on the Twitters: @AndrewC_GZ
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