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Hello, my name is Eric Rogers from parentinggamers.com and this is Parenting Gamers Review of Grand Theft Auto 5. In this video, I am going to give you a quick overview of the game, go over the rating and content, and let you know if I think it is good for your gamer.
So the first question is, what is Grand Theft Auto 5?
Grand Theft Auto (or GTA) is a third-person, open-world action game. What do I mean by that?
First of all, a third-person game is a game where the character the player controls is visible on the screen. This view is popular is story driven games because it helps the player connect more with the main character of the story. You can see what I mean in this clip here.
Next, is the term “open-world”. An open-world game is a game that allows the player a measure of freedom to determine where to go and what to do. There is normally a main story-line but the player is free to ignore it and just explore the world if they choose.
This is a big part of the appeal of GTA 5. The world has a ton of things the player can do. There are side missions like working a tow truck and mini games like golf or tennis. The shear amount of content in the game allows the player to explore the world for hours just to see what there is to do.
Of course, that brings us to the next question, what about the content?
A quick warning. I am about to show you some clips explaining the rating GTA 5 received. These clips are graphic and contain a lot of strong language and sexual content.
GTA 5 is rated M, which is the equivalent of an R movie rating. The rating includes these 7 descriptors:
“Strong Language”, “Intense Violence” and “Blood and Gore”
“Use of Drugs and Alcohol”
and “Nudity” and “Strong Sexual Content” As you can see here, there is a strip club the player can enter to watch girls dance. The player can then go up to one of the girls and ask for a private dance. The girl will give him a lap dance in which she is topless. I am not going to show you want the player sees because of the nature of it but you can probably imagine.
The player also has the ability to pick up a prostitute. If they do this and drive to a secluded spot, they will be able to pay the girl to perform a variety of sexual acts. While there is no nudity in this scene, it does include a lot of moaning and vibrates the controller.
So what’s the verdict? Is Grand Theft Auto 5 a game you should allow your gamer to play?
In a word, no. My recommendation is that you avoid GTA 5 completely.
Now, this may be a hard stance for you to take. GTA 5 is one of the biggest games out there. It made over $1 billion within 3 days of its initial release. The PC version was released last week and all the video game sites were talking about it. Gamers love being part of the conversation and GTA 5 is a large part of that conversation.
The argument your gamer may make is that they just want to play it for the open-world aspect and will avoid all the junk. It is true that they could play the entire game and never go into the strip club or pick up a prostitute. But I recommend you stand firm against this argument for a couple reasons.
First, while it is true they can avoid the strip club and prostitutes, they cannot play through the game and avoid all the sexual content or any of the other content that led to GTA’s M rating. There are several sex scenes throughout the missions and the language is terrible throughout.
The second reason is more important than the first. The likelihood that your gamer will be exposed to pornography is extremely high. The rise of the Internet has done amazing this for society but it also brings problems. People have more access to porn than they have ever had before.
To be completely frank, if you bring GTA 5 into your home, you are bringing pornography in, allowing your gamer to literally play right next to it, and expecting them to have the strength of character to always avoid it. I don’t know about you but when I was in middle school or high school, that would have been a recipe for disaster. I probably would have started out well, avoiding the places I wasn’t supposed to go. But then after a while I would have rationalized it with, “I’ll just go in to the strip club but won’t get a lap dance.” And the eventually my defenses would have broken down completely to the point where I was watching something I should not.
As hard as it may be, this is an area where we as parents must take a firm stand. GTA 5 should be given no place in our homes.
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