For those that haven't turned on a television or viewed any other website in the past 48 hours, the highly anticipated Grand Theft Auto IV was released to the masses. Like previous GTA's, driving is a huge part of the gameplay, but this version even includes drunk driving, which makes the folks at MADD a touch unhappy.
In the game you can visit a bar. Upon exiting the bar you stumble around like crazy and the antics get even crazier when you get into a car. The car swerves around everywhere and is quite hard to control.
In a statement, MADD said:
Each year nearly 13,500 people die in drunk driving crashes and another half a million are injured in alcohol-related traffic crashes. This is why MADD is extremely disappointed by the decision of the manufacturers of the game Grand Theft Auto IV to include a game module where players have to drive drunk. Drunk driving is not a game and it is not a joke. Drunk driving is a choice, a violent crime and it is also 100 percent preventable. MADD is calling on the Entertainment Software Ratings Board to reclassify Grand Theft Auto IV as an Adults Only game, a step up from the current rating of Mature and for the manufacturer to consider a stop in distribution - if not out of responsibility to society then out of respect for the millions of victims/survivors of drunk driving.
MADD has its point, but then again, this game already pushes every other boundary. If you take out the drunk driving then you have to take out the hookers, relentless killing and thievery, which would make the game socially responsible and therefore unappealing to the vast majority of Americans. [CG]