It's an age-old criticism: video games promote senseless violence. Typically we're talking about shoot 'em ups like Duke Nukem, Resident Evil or Grand Theft Auto—not cutsie iPhone games that cost 99 cents. Nevertheless, John Biggs at TechCrunch has been deeply dismayed by the hugely popular iPhone game Angry Birds. For the uninitiated, Angry Birds is a super-simple 2D game that pits a slighted flock of birds against an incompetent group of green pigs. As shown in the video below, the birds fling themselves at the pigs kamikaze-style to win points and advance in the game.
Doesn't anyone realize these birds are committing suicide en masse? An impassioned (albeit tongue-in-cheek) Biggs calls for an end to the senseless violence:
Think about it: these are self-sacrificing suicide birds throwing themselves wholesale at pigs inside of poorly-constructed structures made of various easily-shattered materials including glass, plywood, and stone. Given the nature of their attacks, I believe a political reconciliation should be – and must be – possible. The loss of life on both sides is, if you are a poor player, unilateral on the part of the birds and the pigs, at worst, suffer limited casualties.
If the pigs were to begin using generally accepted construction practices or the birds began using ammunition instead of suicide bombers, the tide of their endless war could be turned in favor of either party. As it stands, this is mutually assured destruction with the odds tilted towards the pigs and it is clear that some higher authority, perhaps the little monster from Cut the Rope, should step in and moderate a peace deal. If not for the birds living than for the birds yet to be born.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to email@example.com.