October 31, 2002
Often, it seems that we continue to discuss the topic of violence
in the media and in games and in popular entertainment, yet we neglect
to analyze its roots. One of the most interesting factors to this
equation of violence being, of course, the fact that violence is
so violent. It probably wouldnt raise so many eyebrows were
it not the very definition of violence.
Yet the odd thing about our fixation upon this matter is the manner
in which we choose to promote violence. For instance, war is very
violent and traumatic to the minds of our young. Nevertheless, they
can be sent off to war while we continually attempt to bar them
from playing violent video games or watching violent movies because
we think it will promote violent tendencies in them. So, supplying
them with heavy artillery is permissible as long as theyre
real weapons and not make-believe weapons.
In this sense, perhaps war itself is a useful thing, completely
wiping away a persons desire toward any violence whatsoever
by dropping actual bombs on them, scaring the shit out of them,
and killing them.
Nevertheless, even more than easily accessible weaponry, one game
has gone quite overlooked as the cause of centuries of violence.
One game of unsurpassed brutality and deviousness. One game played
by conquerors and villains, promoting and glorifying violence, megalomania,
and evil. Of course I refer to that vile game of chess. The very
game that coined the term pawn and thus desensitized
us to the realities of conflict.
That being said, chess is the fundamental blueprint for all violent
games, and thus the coolest, most suave game ever. For instance,
you can pretend that the bishop is a postal worker and then go around
killing pawns with it. Or, you can pretend that the queen is a prostitute
and have the knight execute her. Or you can just take
your rook and stab someone in the eye with it.
|Chess Fun Corner: Black will be at checkmate in 17
Hint: Use your pawns.
But, considering how old the game itself is, Im surprised
no one has realized it could stand a few updated versions and add-ons.
As an example, how much more intense would the game be if the board
was simply filled with 16 white knights poised to fight against
16 black knights? And then there can be a special rule that allows
you to challenge another knight that has offended you
and have those two knights go off onto a separate board for a duel
against each other, hopping around in L shapes, avoiding each other
ad infinitum. And you can even challenge your own knights to duels
when they sufficiently piss you off, to demonstrate how you will
not tolerate failure.
|Chess Fun Corner: Kill your opponents knight
in a duel.
Hint: Use your horsies.
Maybe special missions can be constructed in which
a rook is sent to assassinate the king, except he ends up befriending
the king and must then choose between loyalties; color or friendship.
Wouldnt it also be more realistic if certain pawns run away
when the game begins to go badly? Perhaps after a certain amount
of pieces are cleared from the board, a coin can be flipped after
every other piece removed to determine who stays and who doesnt.
And perhaps pawns might be debilitated for a round or so if theyre
crying, or they might simply go insane and start killing pieces
on their own side. Or perhaps a knight can start thinking about
all of the pieces its killed, get drunk, and fall off the
board. Maybe torture can even be incorporated into this melange
of notions somehow.
And even better, we can insert new pieces into the game, like the
ghost, who can move off the board (so that the other player
doesnt know what happened to it and where it is) and then
reappear at other locations, draining the color from its victims.
Or perhaps the ghost is the only piece that can actually
kill a player.
If were going to promote violence, lets do it right.
wipe your ass on your opponents self esteem
Now thats what I call a game.