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Author Topic: "Kudos for Gamestop" or "My God, Some People are Stupid"  (Read 2157 times)
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Gratch
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« on: August 19, 2008, 04:02:35 PM »

Thought I’d share what I witnessed at Gamestop yesterday.  While I was picking up my Fable Pub Games codes, a soccer mom came in with her kid, who looked like he was around 7 or 8 years old.  The ensuing conversation went something like this:

Mom:  Do you have Grand Theft Auto...(looks at the kid) what is it?...oh, San Andreas?
Clerk:  Let me look.  Is it for him?
Mom:  Yeah.  He plays it at my sister’s house all the time, and has been bugging me to get a copy he can play at home.
Clerk:  We have one, do you realize it is rated Mature?
Mom:  What does that mean?
Clerk:  It has mature content.  There’s lots of violence, foul language, drug & alcohol use, prostitution, etc., etc.  It’s basically the equivalent of an R-rated gangster movie
Mom:  Are you sure?
Clerk:  Yep, I’ve played it, and it’s certainly not for kids.
Mom:  I’ve watched him play a little bit, and it just looked like people running around, jumping off buildings, and stealing cars.  Are you sure all that other stuff is in there?
Clerk:  I’m positive.  It's intended for a very mature audience.  In fact, we can’t sell it to anyone under 17.
Mom:  Well…I don’t know…he plays it all the time…maybe I should just get it for him anyways.
Clerk:  Here’s the box (points out the ESRB rating), you can see for yourself.  It’s not at all appropriate for children.

Sad thing is, she took a few more minutes reading the box copy, then asked the kid “Do you still want this?”.  When the kid said yes, she ended up buying it anyways because “he’s going to play it anyways, so he may as well play it at home”.  I walked up to the checkout when she was done, and simply said “wow”.  The clerks response was “Yeah, I know.  That happens at least 3-4 times a week”.

As I was leaving, my thoughts were:

1.   Big kudos to the clerk for at least trying to educate the mom
2.   How clueless is a person who – after being told exactly how violent and mature the game is – still buys a GTA game for a 7 year old?   And how much do you want to bet she writes a scathing letter to the editor about how awful and violent video games are after she sees little Johnny beating up a prostitute?
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Turtle
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« Reply #1 on: August 19, 2008, 04:18:50 PM »

Well, that was a position where the clerk should have made a good alternate choice for something a bit more age appropriate.  There are some mature rated games that are better suited for younger audiences despite the mature rating.

But still, that mom was stupid.
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« Reply #2 on: August 19, 2008, 04:23:57 PM »

Quote from: Turtle on August 19, 2008, 04:18:50 PM

Well, that was a position where the clerk should have made a good alternate choice for something a bit more age appropriate.  There are some mature rated games that are better suited for younger audiences despite the mature rating.

I would have suggested Manhunt.
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« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2008, 04:33:55 PM »

Well, it reminds me a bit of a parent who will say, "Look, my high school kid is going to drink alcohol.  I would rather they did it in my home where I can at least keep an eye on them, than out somewhere, especially if they have to drive."  I actually think this is a good idea.  Better than a clueless parent who either assumes their kid doesn't drink or one who adopts a don't ask/don't tell policy.

However, it doesn't sound like this woman is going to sit down with her child and talk about what he's played or seen.  She's just an idiot.

Kids do mature differently, and there is something to be said for the allowing it in a controlled environment situation.  Still, I think you'd be hard-pressed to find an 8 year old who was ready for GTA.

My parents started letting me see R rated movies when I was twelve.  But there were some caveats.  I could only see horror films, and I had to tell them about the movies.  This was after my dad, after careful consideration, took me to see Alien .  When I made it through that fine, he realized I was ready.  

The following year, kids were sneaking out behind their parents backs to see Little Darlings (some even seemed to have permission).  I wasn't allowed to go, and, though I was jealous, I never attempted to go myself.  My parents had given me enough freedom, and I felt like they were right in their assessment of me.

If this woman had put that much thought into it, I'd have some respect for her, but it sounds like she's just taking the easy road.

Good job on the Gamestop employee, though.
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hepcat
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« Reply #4 on: August 19, 2008, 04:59:19 PM »

I think the clerk handled it quite well.  It's like R rated movies.  the cashier can't stop an adult from taking a child into the movie.  the responsibility is firmly on the parent or guardian at that point.

Quote
Well, it reminds me a bit of a parent who will say, "Look, my high school kid is going to drink alcohol.  I would rather they did it in my home where I can at least keep an eye on them, than out somewhere, especially if they have to drive."  I actually think this is a good idea.  Better than a clueless parent who either assumes their kid doesn't drink or one who adopts a don't ask/don't tell policy.

i tried to use this excuse with my parents when i was about 12.  they didn't think that at that age I should have access to firearms, liquor and prostitutes though.   icon_cry
« Last Edit: August 19, 2008, 05:01:47 PM by hepcat » Logged

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« Reply #5 on: August 19, 2008, 06:27:14 PM »

isn't there a website trying to educate people about ratings and such? You know what's funny though? If her kid stole a car or something she would be the first person to call foul on the game as well. God bless this stupid country.
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« Reply #6 on: August 19, 2008, 07:03:10 PM »

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Ralph-Wiggum
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« Reply #7 on: August 19, 2008, 07:09:54 PM »

Boy that mom is ignorant. Doesn't she know that GTA IV is out?
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Pyperkub
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« Reply #8 on: August 19, 2008, 07:12:29 PM »

Quote from: Laner on August 19, 2008, 07:03:10 PM



OK, who photoshopped out the 1?
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papasmurff
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« Reply #9 on: August 19, 2008, 07:21:30 PM »

Yeah this happens all the time.  Sometimes parents make a good decision And more often than not they don't.  All we can do is tell them why it is M and let them decide.
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« Reply #10 on: August 19, 2008, 10:02:06 PM »

Quote from: Pyperkub on August 19, 2008, 07:12:29 PM

Quote from: Laner on August 19, 2008, 07:03:10 PM


OK, who photoshopped out the 1?

Even with the 1 there, all I can say is this:  icon_eek
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« Reply #11 on: August 19, 2008, 10:17:07 PM »

I had the same experience when I worked at GameStop.  Some parents are unbelievably clueless about video game ratings, even though most places have ESRB explanations up and the games themselves do a good job of explaining why they are rated what they are.

The worst cases are when the parents react negatively to you bringing the rating up, as if you are secretly trying to make them look like a bad parent for not knowing what they are buying their kid.  Roll Eyes

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« Reply #12 on: August 19, 2008, 10:56:32 PM »

It's actually the best thing about "Bully".
You can tell them the gameplay is similar and that it is from the same company.
I call it "Grand Theft Prep School".

But yeah, that kind of thing happens daily.
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