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"No Russian" implications

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posted on Nov, 24 2009 @ 06:30 AM
Hello, this is my first thread and this might be a little tough for me as I first have to try to get my head straight on everything I associate with this topic...
This isn't much an effort to convey in a logical or externally well crafted or aesthetic way nevertheless I feel obligated to put this out...

There's some nice reading on the internet about the controversial "no russian" chapter of Modern Warfare 2. I hope everybody knows about it, if you don't, go check out the walkthrough on youtube, basically it's about you being an CIA operative infiltrating a russian nationalist cell which with your help carries out a massacre at a russian airport. Now, there's been a lot of crying-out-loud about the morality of videogames, about Modern Warfare 2 in particular, now it even receives scrutiny from gamers.

Some aspects: There are no achievements for this chapter because if there were, it would be thought of as an encouragement for playing through the chapter. In fact, it is skippable by default.
That said the developers designed this to give the player a choice of morality: It puts you in a situation that denies the hedonistic expirience of video-games and lets you decide for yourself wether you want to participate or leave the civilians be (I don't entirely understand why the NPC-Allies leave no survivors since actually that would seem plausible for the plot of the game).
In the end, you are executed by your teammates because they are aware of your CIA-operation and tried using you as a decoy in the first place, thus setting the plot for the remainder of the game from then on.

This is really weird, so you are burdened with immoral decisions, which aren't entirely about ethics because your actions don't have any compromising effect whatsoever which is the point of ethics- to avoid them. Yet judging the story, your purpose is different than those of your fellow terrorists, since you were assigned to infiltrating them and your character is punished in the end. Your participation isn't worthwhile in the light of your execution, your character only is a plot-device. Or rather the character whose perception you temporarily control.

A different thing is when I think about people lamenting the game it gives me two thoughts: If they lament "no russian" they would probably think of themselves as "moral" persons. If they are moral, they wouldn't play "no russian" for the sake of the executing-unarmed-civilians-bit. But if so, everything is okay yet they complain, so this leads to thought two: They have a moral shell to protect different virtues. They complain about "no russian" because the idea of making such decisions scares them. Because it scares them they are uncertain about their moral integrity and thus are aware they are not entirely moral from the bottom up.

Your thoughts please.

[edit on 24/11/09 by thricearound]

posted on Nov, 24 2009 @ 08:51 AM
reply to post by thricearound

my thoughts - as someone who has never played it - and barely understands what you're talking about - is that now I wish I understood the game better because it sounds like you are asking some very interesting questions

I'll be interested to see where this one goes

posted on Nov, 24 2009 @ 01:59 PM
I, myself being Russian, LOVED the chapter
I killed as many Russians as I could and loved it because it is a video game about killing. I don't care who I am killing in video games because it is not real...I am a Christian, yet I would have no problems (in a video game) walking into the Vatican in a chapter called "kill the christians" Who cares it is a video game

posted on Dec, 2 2009 @ 09:08 PM
reply to post by thricearound

The first time I played through this level, I was caught completely by surprise by what I saw happening. To be honest, it really made me sick to play through that part to the point I wanted to go throw up. We hear about stuff like this really going on now and then, but seeing it like that really drives it home, even if it is only in a video game.

P.S. I also enjoyed the whole thing about a false official story

posted on Dec, 3 2009 @ 04:29 PM
this is an interesting thread.

I wouldn't play the level because the whole concept of shooting unarmed civilians only to spy on my Russian opponents would scare me. Unless it has some upgrates, secret unlockables, etc.

I know a game is just a game. But if I played that level it would definitely make me end up spending days searching within myself to see whether I'd hesitate or just carry out the mission if I was in that situation. Of course, maybe I could just use any excuses later like saying I was carrying out a mission for my country, I was following orders, I was doing what I thought was best, I was having to handle a bad situation, I was doing it for the greater good of everyone else, etc. But I'd get curious & wonder what I would choose to do because even thinking of it is scary.

posted on Dec, 3 2009 @ 05:25 PM
Another thing I'd like to add, I think this level may also provide some of us with a window into some of the moral dilemmas some people who are no different than many of us may face in service to their country.

posted on Dec, 8 2009 @ 03:35 AM
reply to post by killyou

THAT is a BRILLIANT observation because you're actively observing these mechanisms which start up whenever we do stupid stuff or neglect consequences.. We start making excuses for ourselves and the fact that you not only do you struggle with the act, you struggle with your reaction and thus yourself even more because you actually struggle about your struggle and so on and so on....That's way deep!

posted on Dec, 8 2009 @ 04:09 AM
i had fun that part of the level.

i let the civilians run a lit before i shot them in the leg. and had them on the floor. then run over and shoot them in the face. why the hell not? its a game.

does that make me a bad person for torturing virtual people?

posted on Dec, 8 2009 @ 05:28 AM
I'd agree with that...It's probably better to follow your urges in such a controllable environment like videogames...If people were so addicted to video-games they think they become reality and expirience the casualties in-game to be genuine human loss, they'd probably not be capable of executing a massacre because the real-world becomes irrelevant, so they'd never be able to get their lazy asses up. Also, it's funny to point out that in germany, all the school-schootings took place in the upmost branch of education...We got three of them, if you pass through the (chronologically speaking) third branch you're cleared for joining university and although we are told we have a social problem with all the people who drop out years before when they're in the first and secondary branch and probably waste their life that way, they may cause all kinds of problems, BUT they NEVER do shootings..Sometimes people are threatened, yeah, murders even, but not indiscriminate violence with gunpower...At least the violence doesn't cause public awareness because the media will only follow stories of misery on a massive scale. It's ironic though because the manner in which the media presents the killers (who in most cases committ suicide and avoid arrest) in a fascinating manner, in a slightly gloryfying manner, pointing out the body-count, the dramatic imagery, the photographs of the late shooter...

We are addicted, maybe dependent, definately fascinated by violence, that's why the media puts it out and if the above statement is true, then it's even a self-perpetuating process. Remember Virginia Tech, when the Korean guy even submitted posed photos? I guess the newscasters went "As if he wanted us to show our viewers exactely that and serve nothing but somebody's violent course....Tom with the weather."

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