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Grand Theft Auto: A parent's predicament

Rochester, N.Y. -- The fastest selling game in history, Grand Theft Auto V, racked in more than $1 billion in sales in less than a week. While the video game is popular in stores, some local families do not want it in their homes or anywhere around their children.

Thats a no in my family, Becky Corcimiglia said her 15-year-old son showed her the games trailer and that was all she needed to see. I dont want to see it in its entirety, said Corcimiglia, it just looks so violent and sexually explicit.

Corcimiglia said Grand Theft Auto V encompasses all that is evil and wrong in the world. It's just utter violence, she said, it's unnecessary.

Gamers said the latest installment of the storied video game is more violent than franchises previous releases. Yeah, its definitely taken it up a level, said Best Buy employee, Jared Joy.

An avid gamer and a big fan of GTA, Joy bought the video game when it was released at midnight Tuesday. The best game hes ever seen, Joy said, They made it like real life; they have hobbies in there like golfing, bowling, yoga. That virtual reality, Joy said, also includes violent carjackings, trips to strip clubs and an interactive torture scene.

They have their whole lives to be introduced to such things, Corcimiglia said, why start when theyre children?

Joy said its not just GTA; many video games contain mature material. Youve definitely seen a rise adult content in games; obviously thats why they have the ratings system in there.

Rated M for Mature, Grand Theft Auto V buyers must be at least 17-years-old or accompanied by an adult. Joy said, We make sure we ID everyone who buys a mature game. But thats usually not necessary, sales associates at a variety of local video game stores said its often parents who purchase the game.

Corcimiglia said shes witnessed it happen on multiple occasions, I see parents willingly going ahead and buying it by their side. Its their choice, but as a mother, Corcimiglia said its one she strongly disagrees with. Theres so much else out there in the world that will introduce them to violence, why would I hand it to him on a platter?

Joy was 13-years-old when he got the first GTA game but with better graphics and more mature content, he said he would not recommend the game to anyone under 17.

Corcimiglia said Grand Theft Auto V is an adult game that is meant for adults. In the hands of a child, she said, the game could be dangerous. Ive seen children play the game, when theyre all done they stand up and try to interact what they just saw.

Rachel Glaser, 13WHAM-TV
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