Sunday 20 September, 2009
I woke up early this morning,and played Grand Theft Auto so I wouldn't have to, ahem, look forward to it later on. My opinion of the game did not improve with another round of gameplay. This time, since I already spoke of beauty and ownership, I tried very very hard to focus fully on other issues. And though there are many that could easily make for a good entry, CJ's family in the game will be the focus here.
My cousin was watching me play and he stated it very nicely. "This is a good take on an inner-city family". Why, yes, dear cousin, I believe it is. The family of the main character is broken, shattered into a billion itty bitty pieces that are so small that the pieces became dust and flew away in the wind never to return. The scene towards the beginning, in the graveyard, was very depressing, because even the loss of a mother could not give these children any common ground or any motivation to stand beside each other. It is merely bicker and condemn.
I know families that are like this exist. I have seen quite a few. But, honestly, they are boring. What can be added to a plot if there is no real change in their behaviours? There will be no strain, or no severing events if familial ties are already cut. The entertainment value of this family, in terms of potential interest, are minimal.
Besides that cold-hearted view, I can also say that families like this are very sad things. I think that broken families should not be made into modes of entertainment. It seems cruel and heartless to be turning a family such as Cj's, however realistic it may be, into such a part of a game. There are instances, like if this was merely the background of a character far from the broken family, where it could create a nice basis for character development. But, this family interactions are placed in the lime-light, and it doesn't look likely (from the little that I have played, as well as based on the concept of the game)that there will be much 'development' (as in progression and growth) in CJ's psyche.
From CJs perspective, if your family is gone, who do you turn to? Who else can you count on? I disagree with your impression that the game is somehow using broken families for entertainment. The point of the game isn't to make fun of or ridicule CJ, right? More broadly, what do you think happens to a neighborhood when everyone's family is broken or damaged in some way?
Wednesday 30 September, 2009 by jp