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MW3 Deemed Ultra-Violent Based on London Clip

There's nothing like a good gaming scandal to heat up interest for an upcoming title, whether it's positive or negative. We saw plenty of drama stirred up over EA's Medal of Honor and the controversial-yet-then-playable Taliban forces, provoking the government into threats of banning the game from GameStop stores and Post Exchanges located on military bases nationwide. EA eventually buckled under pressure and removed the "Taliban" tag.

Then just weeks ago, Activision's Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (MW3) assets were "leaked" early, forcing the publisher into PR recovery mode. Just days ago a letter from Activision's CEO indicated that the company plans to root out the mole even though the early leak created some heavy-duty-yet-positive buzz.

Unfortunately, the drama isn't over. Now MW3 has taken a "Medal of Honor" turn by drumming up controversy based on the London teaser trailer, branding it as an "ultra-violent" game. Here's the problem though: on July 7, 2005 (7/7), a series of coordinated suicide attacks struck London by targeting the city's public transportation links during the morning rush hour. The London Underground service took the brunt of the attack, with 56 people killed – including four bombers – and 700 others injured.

Supporters of those affected by the attacks on London are now wanting the game banned from the UK. "I have concerns as these games are hyper-real and take place in a landscape we are familiar with," said Vivienne Pattison, spokesperson for campaign group Mediawatch UK. "In light of the fact we have just had the 7/7 inquests, it is in incredibly poor taste."

An unnamed person at Activision fired back, saying that MW3 "is a fictional action game aimed at mature adults and set in World War Three. The scenes in the game are entirely fictional and are not intended to recreate any historical events."

Still, British newspaper The Daily Mail is seemingly trying to fan the flames, pointing out that in one specific shot in the trailer, an armed soldier on a truck cuts in front of a Tube carriage, derailing and causing it to explode. "Call Of Duty 3 has not yet received an age certification and shows soldiers running through the streets of London with machine guns while bombs explode and buildings tumble to the ground," the paper writes. "Big Ben is also clearly visible as are police cars and a London bus amid the violent scenes."

Still, the British paper and those who support the 7/7 victims are understandably sensitive to anything that may resemble that horrible day might like Americans would protest "violent" scenes that resemble the 9/11 attacks. This also won't be the last time someone strikes out against publishers and developers because their games are no longer mere means of entertainment, but seemingly out to recreate reality while stepping on a few sensitive nerves in the process.

Still, don't expect to see this scenario removed from MW3 – it's not as simple as removing a name from a multiplayer faction. Activision also left the controversial "No Russian" level in the previous installment despite prior complaints. If anything, MW3 will simply be banned from specific markets who take offense to the content... if it gets to that point.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is scheduled to invade the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Windows PC on November 8, 2011.

  • sacre
    Whine whine whine whine whine. If you don't want to see that "horrifying" shit than don't buy and play the game. To not allow thousands the fun of the game simply because a few families are pissy is wrong. Let them sulk in their own corner, let the other thousands do what they wish.
  • Ultra-violent?

    Modern Warfare 3: Clockwork Orange Edition.
  • Trialsking
    I am more horrified by the graphics. Now your feeling consolized...
  • j3ff86
    You needn't take it any further, sir. You've proved to me that all this ultraviolence and killing is wrong, wrong, and terribly wrong. I've learned me lesson, sir. I've seen now what I've never seen before. I'm cured! Praise god!
  • bin1127
    You would've thought that the families of victims would want to buy the game and shoot some terrorists. We have also exhausted whatever impact of violence in media that nothing can really be called "ultra-violent" by modern standards. The movie Saw might've made Jesus faint, but now it's what I use to lull babies to sleep.
  • RogueKitsune
    All issues i have with the COD franchise aside. These people are morons, and just want attention. If you don't like it then don't play it. Yes it is really that simple. Let the majority decide wither or not the games offends them before you start trying to wave a ban hammer around. Then again the majority is usually a bunch of morons that jump on any bandwagon they see :\
  • mr_koombs
    Games are games thats it!!! It doesn't help that the Daily Mail is a populist politics paper than chases one story to another try to stir up crap rather than finding a real story!! It's just another case of a knee jerk reaction.
  • stalker7d7
    hyper-real? Really? The graphics we've seen so far are crap. The previous games have inhuman regeneration abilities. You respawn when you die. 12 year olds teabag others corpses. That's hyper-real alright...
  • Zingam
    Oh, yeah? When it was shooting Russians in the airport it was OK?

    Funny people! Although I think this type of violence in games is just tasteless and pointless.

    But banning the game... that doesn't solve any problems at all. That would be even worse than making it.

    Why don't they make such scene in the USA? :D Oh, yeah crap the freedom of speech and the right to free expression.
  • Zingam
    dimamu15You are wrong. At this stage this is pure propaganda (maybe not intentional), not just a fictional game. I am glad MW2 was banned in Russia. I am Russian and I played that mission. It is horrifying. A guy crying on the dead bodies of his wife and children. What kind of sick fuck would come up with this? Why would you feel need to put it into the game? Provoking aggression and terrorism in first person shooter game. How is it fun, or, adds to the story? I don't understand it. It was totally pointless. If similar content will go out it must be banned. It provokes aggression. Not to me or you, for me it is just sad and scary, but for others stupid ass people. Not all of us are clearheaded.
    Dude, now if the game was set in Chechnya or the victims were Nazis it wouldn't have been so bad, would it?

    While I think that it was a stupid idea to make this into a game, this doesn't provoke terrorism. It rather shows the inadequacy of the government and it's inability to solve terrorism. And that's the main reason to ban such a game, it makes to government look bad indirectly.

    Even though this scene sucks I think it has some educational purposes. It actually shows that violence in any kind is bad for the ordinary people. You see, terrorism never affects the guilty, the politicians and their families and it doesn't solve any problems. It shows what you might expect to happen to you while your politicians have some more fun stealing some more gas money and stuffing their pockets full of riches.