Last week, we learned via the ESRB that upcoming shooter Battlefield 3 will feature cop-killing. Not as a main mission or anything, but as ancillary content. Here's how the ESRB describes it:
"In one sequence, a restrained character's throat is slit (off-screen); in another, players shoot police officers to complete a mission objective. The words 'f***' and 's***' can be heard frequently in the dialogue."
When asked for clarification by Eurogamer, Electronic Arts issued a statement saying:
"I don't think you understand the gravity of the situation. For God's sake, there is a nuke in Paris! Millions of lives are at stake."
If you read between the lines, it seems that EA is saying: "Within the context of the story, violence against law officers is necessary, though regrettable."
Controversy over, right? I guess we'll see when the actual game launches on October 25 and the cop-killing either causes a "No Russians" style media flare-up, or everyone ignores it because there are real problems in the real world that need to be solved, and solving cartoon problems that happen in video games isn't taken seriously by the media, politicians and the public. I'm hoping for the former, but expecting the latter, to be honest.
If you're interested in further descriptions of violence in Battlefield 3, here's the rest of the ESRB's description of the game's content:
"The frequent combat is highlighted by realistic gunfire and large explosions; characters sometimes scream and emit large splashes of blood when shot. Players can also engage in hand-to-hand combat: repeatedly punching enemies in the face; stabbing soldiers to death with knives.
Punching and stabbing: CONFIRMED!