John Brandon of FOX News recently published a hard-hitting news report about Bulletstorm, the upcoming video game from Epic Games. And when I say “hard-hitting,” what I really mean is “hilariously unresearched.”
FOX News, once again, has seriously screwed up.
Headlined “Is Bulletstorm the Worst Video Game in
the World?” it began with a warning to parents that a “Bulletstorm is on
the horizon.” The article then continues with a factually inaccurate
statement from Carol Lieberman, a psychologist and book author, who
claims that games such as Bulletstorm have led to real-world sexual
“The increase in rapes can be attributed in large part to the playing out of [sexual] scenes in video games,” she said.
Lieberman has since been contacted by numerous sources for comment and
some kind of evidence to back up her claim, but she has not made any
official response yet. Video-game fans, however, are already taking
matters into their own hands by attacking her book on Amazon by leaving one-star reviews. This is a similar response to Cooper Lawrence's unresearched attacks on Mass Effect on FOX News in 2008.
did acknowledge that the ESRB rates video-game content for parents, but
makes a bold statement that it's useless and that the summary for the
ratings are online only. Apparently, Brandon has never seen the ESRB
summaries on the back of a video-game box before.
The article vaguely mentioned a response from Bulletstorm's
publisher, Electronic Arts. The only thing they were quoted on
was that “Bulletstorm has been given an M rating by the ESRB, and we have
adhered to all their guidelines in regards to the marketing and
promotion of Bulletstorm.”
Electronic Arts' VP of public
relations Tammy Schachter, however, was quick to defend the creative
freedom of the game's artists.
“As you know, Bulletstorm is
a work of entertainment fiction that takes place in the 26th century on
the abandoned fictitious paradise planet Stygia, where our heroes fight
mutants, monsters, flesh-eating plants and gigantic dinosaurs.
People Can Fly and EA are avid supporters of the ESA and believe in the
Entertainment Software Ratings Board (ESRB) rating system. We believe
in and abide by the policies put in place by the ESRB.
rated M for Mature for blood and gore, intense violence, partial
nudity, sexual themes, strong language and use of alcohol. The game and
its marketing adhere to all guidelines set forth by the ESRB; both are
designed for people 17-plus. Never is the game marketed to children.
People Can Fly and EA support the right of artists to create works of
entertainment fiction for consumers of all ages, including adults who
enjoy action adventures like Bulletstorm. Much like Tarantino's Kill
Bill or Rodriguez's Sin City, this game is an expression of creative
entertainment for adults.”
FOX News attacked the game Mass Effect in 2008 by making similar unresearched and
irrelevant claims. That report stated the game is “full of digital
nudity and sex,” and described the game as “Luke Skywalker meets Debbie
Does Dallas.” Clearly, no one knew what the the hell they were talking about.
Seriously, FOX News, get your shit together.