Laverim's Super Columbine Massacre RPG (PC)
| [February 23, 2009 03:39:09 AM]
| Upon completing a game with question content like this, one can’t help but ask the question of why. You begin performing the Columbine Massacre and your characters ultimately kill themselves. This is unnerving and acts as a means of commentary on the youth’s actions. After the credits roll, however, you find yourself in the depths of Hell. Dyllan and Eric’s titles change from Trench Coat Mafia to Demon God. Everything you see and fight is something pulled straight from the first person shooting game, Doom. This was most certainly in poor taste, without a doubt. Doing something of this nature shows little respect to the parties involved in such a painful event. It is an insult in a manner of speaking.
Now, I did a little bit of research on this particular game after subjecting myself to its content. The whole point of the artist in creating this title was to produce a game that was more thought-provoking on such a sensitive subject. He more than overshoots his original intent and beelines off on some wild tangent once you arrive in Hell. Furthermore, you eventually reach an island containing numerous culture, media, and video game icons, such as Bart Simpson or Mega Man. However, in one instance, you speak to a little girl who introduces herself as Jon Bonnet Ramsey. This game effectively breaches yet another sensitive subject by doing this. However, this is not the only insult to injury.
Ultimately, when all of the ‘fun’ is said and done, you find yourself fighting against Satan himself. Upon beating him, he asks you to join him in Hell as friends. The game then cuts from Hell and proceeds to show a public conference where numerous officials, both government and local, speak on behalf of the events that had transpired in Columbine. Easy access to guns, poor parenting, and even sodomy are blamed for Dyllan and Eric’s massacre, and it is even stated that bullying wasn’t really a factor. This is contrary to the reflections of the main characters themselves as they eradicated their school. Finally, you see the final screen of the game, the Times Magazine cover that was released just after the incident reading, “The Monsters Next Door: What Made Them Do It?”
This is clear commentary on mass media warping the events of something so heavily that the very cause of such a travesty is lost to us, even if it was somewhat apparent. However, his sociopolitical commentary is drowned in the content of the Hell area of his game. It turns a serious reflection and commentary into a joke, a mockery. It is highly insensitive and uncalled for. Ultimately, in the creation of his game, the designer lost sight of his original goals. The artist clearly had a positive intent in store for this game, but just grew careless.
There was also a fair amount of controversy that surrounded this game during its inception. This game was initially made for and submitted to Guerilla Gamemaker Competition. During this competition, the game was eventually disqualified on its heavily controversial grounds. Along with it, numerous games were withdrawn from the competition, including games as notable as Castle Crashers. This disqualification was undoubtedly a violation of the creator’s freedom of speech to some extent. However, there still lies the problem of his abuse of this right to the extreme of, even if by accident, he made a mockery of everything the Columbine Massacre represented. This game most certainly forces us to recall those events and pushes us to accept that there may have been circumstances that caused these two youths to snap that could have been prevented through compassion and acknowledgment. This does not change his sloppy execution.
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| [February 22, 2009 04:56:35 PM]
| As you play through Super Columbine Massacre RPG, you gradually encounter a fair amount f story telling. This story telling often relates some information on why Dyllan and Eric. Almost as soon as you begin the game, you are hit with a flashback of when Dyllan and Eric are playing with what appears to be gun powder. You are given insight into their characters and the flashback alludes to them acquiring the weapons that are soon pulled from their duffle bags. All throughout the game, the characters are constantly discussing how everyone will pay, however, they make it a point to create a recording that blatantly states to not blame anyone other than themselves for the atrocity they are about to commit.
In a sort of way, their actions, while selfish, can be considered noble, making an effort to not involve anyone and dispel any form of guilt that may have been thrown on their parents or friends by the authorities. Later on in the game, after you’ve slain everyone in the gymnasium, you encounter a flashback of where Eric is beaten up in the men’s locker room by three jocks for absolutely no reason at all. He comments how he had been waiting to kill them all for so long and how it felt good to do it. Another situation arises where Dyllan comments to a teacher that it was a shame that she hated his writing so much as you proceed to kill her.
There are various other story elements like these that are made for you to throw into question the ‘evilness’ of Dyllan and Eric. This is, of course, until you take a step back and consider the facts. This game was made by a designer who was not present in the actual massacre. If they had been, there’s the possibility that they would either be dead or not want to reopen such sore wounds. Furthermore, this designer couldn’t possibly know any of what Dyllan and Eric were thinking, what exactly they did, let alone how the actual massacre occurred. Key facts, such as the propane bombs not exploding and the car bomb not being detonated can be drawn from historical documentation. Some commentary on behalf of the boys can also be drawn from security recordings. However, there is not viable way that the designer could have known what they were thinking, if the boys were reminiscing on events that led them to this destruction, or anything else. This leads everything to be conjecture and speculation.
The realism and authenticity of this work are completely thrown into question. There is no form of validity in any of the cut scenes or storytelling. Therefore all of the insight we are drawing from our main characters is completely false. Furthermore, as I just indicated in my referral to Dylan and Eric, they have become characters and are no longer real people within the realm of the game. Everything about them, Columbine, and the massacre lose a heavy amount of their authenticity. This game turns a serious event into something of a mockery and a spectacle for all to see and experience. It is heavily exploitative. This game cannot be taken seriously and along with that, the actual events of Columbine run the risk of losing their emphasis as well.
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| [February 21, 2009 07:55:02 PM]
| I have always been meaning to try Super Columbine Massacre. The real question I’ve been asking myself since my first play through is why? However, I’m a firm believer that a person should never judge a subject or product until they have actual experience in the issue, instead of scourging something to death without know preexisting knowledge. That said, I played the game for roughly the span of 45 minutes to an hour on my first play through, and I can honestly say that it was rather disturbing.
You are thrust into the events of the Columbine Shooting instantly, being led from the beginning of the youths’ days and through the events of the shooting. Everything behaves like a standard RPG, however, things begin to compound rather quickly as your ‘party’ acquires their gear and weapons. Your first objective is to plant a series of bombs on the school’s campus. This doesn’t entirely set in on what exactly the player is doing until the bombs fail to detonate and you begin slaughtering all of the students wandering the campus. When I say slaughter, I am making absolutely no exaggeration. Most of the ‘enemies’ you face will not fight back against you in battle. In some cases, they’ll even pray to God as you proceed to kill them.
In some circumstances, the opponents or targets will fight back against you. Compounding this, the targets are known as ‘Jock,’ ‘Preppy Girl,’ ‘Nerdy Girl,’ and so on. Given the context of the game, it begins to sink in that you’re objectifying actual, living people, and brutally maiming them. I could not help but slowly grow nauseated as I played through this game. It is highly unnerving and makes me question whether or not I wish to finish this game. The violence may be cartoonish in quality, but the undertones of what you’re actually doing rise up out of the game’s quality, and a certain level of responsibility for your actions makes itself known.
Furthermore, this removal of the boundaries between the realm of games and reality causes me to feel as if I’m breaking one of the top ethical creeds. It is wrong to take a human’s life, and while this is a reenactment of the events, I feel wrong charging through these enemies and killing them. It’s almost as if it’s not a game at all and more societal commentary on violence of the youth.
This entry has been edited 1 time. It was last edited on Feb 23rd, 2009 at 03:40:10.
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