If you’ve been living your life out in the real world recently, you likely have not heard of the latest internet gaming craze PUBG, or PlayerUnknown Battlegrounds. The game drops the player onto an island with the aim of wiping out other players one by one, drawing comparisons online with the Hunger Games or Battle Royale.
The straightforward concept of the game has led to its success, however recent comments from the Chinese Audio-Video and Digital Publishing Association have established that the game will not likely receive a publishing license. The association states that their reasoning behind the decision is that PUBG is a “serious deviation from our socialist core values and the traditional Chinese culture and ethical norms.”
Complex beliefs surrounding the interaction of socialist politics and censorship aside, the association also interestingly added that it is also “not conducive to the physical and mental health of young consumers.”
The idea that video games collaborate with mental illness of young people in a serious way is not new. The popular esports gamer named ‘Amazing’ is quoted in an interview discussing how the very nature of video games is so attractive to young people with mental illness.
One can become a hero within a game by merely being practiced and skilled at it, and the immersing graphics and concepts of today’s best games can provide an escape from reality like never before. So is China’s ban on PUBG a reasonable protective measure for the young people of their nation, or is mental health in this situation being used as an apology for a generational crackdown on ‘inappropriate content’?
This writer believes that the grey area here lies in the age of the games users. Of course, every adult has the right to make their own bad decisions, and if a user wants to escape into a video game because of their own unhappiness with reality, they should be allowed to.
However, there are loads of things that are restricted to minors based on the idea that they aren’t developed enough to make informed decisions, like alcohol and cigarettes. And if video games are shown to have the same adverse affects on youth mental health as these other things that are restricted to them, why aren’t video games being treated as a controlled substance?
Maybe it’s because they’re just video games. They don’t give you lung cancer.
If you or a loved one you know battles with Mental Health Issues, please do get the help you need. If you need to talk to someone now, you can talk to one of the many fantastic therapists at Better Help by CLICKING HERE.
This post was created with the help of Grammarly.