Gaming and the “responsible parent”

A friend has recommended I get Grand Theft Auto IV.  They pointed out the rave reviews it’s received, and how the gameplay blows away any other game out there.  I’ve heard about the other titles in the GTA series, so I was skeptical about bringing such a game into my home with a 13 year-old impressionable boy who has already started some disrespectful teen-age style behavior.

Sure enough, there are many great reviews about the game, with many saying it’s a “must-have” game.  But this is what stopped me:

ESRB Rating: Mature – Intense Violence, Strong Language, Use of Drugs, Blood, Partial Nudity, Strong Sexual Content, Use of Alcohol

Call me a prude, but I’m not going to expose my son to this just yet.  To be honest, I don’t think I could play a game with all that crap in it, no matter how good the “game play” is.  It’s one thing to blow away fellow players in games like Halo and the Quake series (which I’ve played since the first Quake), but another to be in a modern setting using drugs, visiting strip clubs, stealing cars, and blowing away civilians and police.

Yes, I have some principles.

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