Videogames blamed for… everything!

Videogames are regularly blamed for many things, the most popular being making children fat and violent. So when something new, such as the Nintendo Wii, comes along everyone is happy. The Wii gets children exercising again, and it doesn’t feature as many violent games as other consoles. However that “everyone” has just gotten a little smaller.

Children who spend too much time playing virtual sports on their new Nintendo Wii are getting a false sense of what it’s like to compete in the world.

Kelly McBride – a US sports reporter, has reportedly said that the Wii, in particular Wii Tennis from the Wii Sports game, is giving children false hope. She thinks that it is making them think that when they pick up a tennis racket they will be able to beat all comers, in the same way they can whup anyone at Wii Tennis.

Personally I reckon she’s just upset because they beat her.

All Kelly has to do to ruin her childrens delusions is hand them a tennis racket and show them it’s just not the same. However instead she has gone on national radio and belittled her offspring (I’m sure her kids are thanking her now).

I find it strange that this should come up now, when games have been around for so long. I can understand the arguments about violent video games (even if I disagree with them) but this is just silly. In video games I have jumped out of planes, flown space ships, and had sword fights with orcs but I have never thought I could do these things for real. Of course she is talking about things that are likely, so how about racing games? With a steering wheel and peddles motorsports games can be very realistic – but I am sure 99% of videogamers realise that even though they can lap Schumacher in a Formula 1 game they would never be able to do it for real.

I also wonder if her children played games before they got a Wii, and if so what she thought of them sitting, totally passively, on the sofa/ bed playing. Is this better than standing, swinging your arms around like a crazy person? I’ve played a fair few games of Wii tennis (I have yet to find a Wii for sale in the UK but we have one at work) and I know that after a few games I’m aching more than I would if I was playing for real.

“More?” I hear you say. Well what I mean is, when I play Wii tennis I actually try to play, whereas when I used to play tennis at school, being total rubbish, I just didn’t bother and stood there letting the ball pass me by. I do not enjoy real tennis, and am under zero illusions that, should I ever play again, I will suddenly become a tennis God.

I think she should be happy that her children are not turning into fat violent people, rather than complaining that they might think they’re better than they are at real tennis.

Let me know what you think on Mastodon, or BlueSky (or Twitter X if you must).

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