The problem with guns
Zolani Stewart
31

I think a large part of why the use of guns carries no drama in many video games, and first and third person shooters in particular, comes directly from the mechanics used to pull the trigger.

Aiming a reticle and pressing a button is a series of actions not at all unique to shooting games. It’s the same “point-and-click” interface used since MacOS in 1984, and later in Windows, Word Perfect, Internet Explorer, and damn near every web browser, accounting program, and spread sheet organizer made in the last thirty years. It’s a method of computer interfacing purposely designed to be so effortless as to be unnoticeable, so that it’s performer can repeat it endlessly in the course of completing their work.

Clicking a mouse button isn’t equivalent to pulling a trigger so much as focusing your attention. It’s killing at a glance.

Taking a life in these games is mechanically identical to selecting a card in computer solitaire. That association is a hell of an obstacle for developers to overcome.

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