Hey Community !
Important note : Don't mix up the appreciating with simple enjoyment. You can enjoy a GTA game very easily, but appreciation is a "clear perception or recognition, esp. of historic importance and aesthetic quality" if we consider video games as art ; "Awareness or delicate perception, especially of aesthetic qualities or values" if more general.
I'm writing this because the subject I'm gonna talk about turns out to be almost everywhere on the net, under every single Youtube video about GTA, on TV talk shows etc.
Grand Theft Auto and kids ... Are tiresome subject, even more tiresome if you got one that connected on your vocal chat ..
I think those big red numbers on the game cover aren't just some fancy adornments, from a general point of view GTA has a lot of mature content under it's pure form, gore, sexual content, swearing, violence and also a way of exolting a criminal lifestyle in a more tacit way. I'm not going further on those arguments because you hear them all over on some cheap TV talk shows with overcaring, over protective & ignorant parents that should inform theirselves rather than starting to blame something in it's entirety. Before blaming a game which has an explicit and visible PEGI rating because it may harm their 12 year old son who somehow managed to get the game running on his console, learn to parent first ! Growing a kid is the affair of the parents, however they have to claim the responsability of possbile consequences.
It's true that those kind of games may represent a danger for kids, who may be suggestible by such stuff, but after all we know that those "pieces of software" are not training devices for terrorists, I think people should get their guns under control before blaiming video games. (Not saying with should forbid to americans to carry guns, but just regulate the whole matter).
There's another point I want to clear out, which is more important to me, the question of appreciating such a game right, which doesn't only conscern the younger players among us. A GTA game is fully-loaded with pop-culture references, allusions to Movies/Series, books, personalities, and of course, politics. This starts from the very early GTA III to the current titles. Just take Vice City for example, the game takes most of it's inspirations from Miami Vice and Scarfaces, references which are almost a must-know when you play this game. I remember always having a grin of my face when I walked through the story and heard a famous movie line here and there, some ad banners or radio spots which were an allusion to that movie or when you figure out that Ray Liotta was grateful enough to lend his voice to Tommy and the great Phillip Micheal Thomas, Ricardo Tubbs from Miami Vice was voice acting Lance Vance ! The writers and developers always rewarded you at a point by diggin' a bit and placing some cool insiders here and there.
Even bigger in GTA 5, such a big world with so much "insiders", the one I remembered like Lethal Weapons, Ghostbusters, Wayne's World, The Shining and of course how could you miss it, the legendary Kenny Loggins moderating Rock Radio himself . The ingame TV series, the social satire and everything else
Then I have to say, it's just depressing after all of this to encounter some prepub playing the game confronting you with a "I ain't give a sh*t attitude". "The deeper parody of the game is lost among all those 14 years old kids. All they care about is stealing some virtual vehicle that will advance them no further than their own f*kin living rooms". (Only adressed to this kind of public)
I think understanding and appreciating such a game requires a minimum of prime of life, general knowledge, some references and maturity, because, especially games like Grand Theft Auto which try to create an atmosphere and focus on the depth in the game-world.
Don't think I'm radical on my opinion, what I call matureness isn't acquired by archieving the age which is indicated on a game cover, of course there are some people that walk life with open eyes at almost any age and have other points of interests than the typical hyped bullsh*t we all get fed with, but I still encounter some which remain formatted individuals which don't search further in their interests than the latest diffused stuff.
When social fatalism encounters personal freedom, it doesn't always end well ..
Keen to know your opinions and reactions about this subject,
PS : Sorry for possible errors, english is not my mother tongue.