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Wednesday, November 24, 2004

'10 worst video games'

Last week the best, this week the worst. To round out the video-game picture (see last week's "Kid-tested, parent-approved video games"), this week children's media watchdog, the Minneapolis-based National Institute on Media and the Family, released its "Ninth-Annual MediaWise Video Game Report Card" on Capitol Hill. "Doom 3" and "Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas" top the list (at the very bottom of the report). Here's ABC News on the "Report Card." The Institute also offered its Top 10 for children and teens, and only one game - "ESPN NFL 2 K5" - overlapped with's top 10, however FamilyFun only looked at games for the 6-to-12-year-old age range.

Meanwhile, a coalition of children's, women's, and church groups led by the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility also announced its picks for the worst 10, ZDNET reports. It pretty much matched the MediaWise list but included "America's Army," "a free game distributed by the U.S. Army as a recruiting tool," according to ZDNET. The highly controversial game that reenacts President Kennedy's assassination didn't make the list because it was released too late (here's a review in Slate and a report in London's Times Online). Some members of the group also criticized the nonprofit Entertainment Software Ratings Board (, which this week released its own research, finding that "more than 80% of parents considered the group's ratings appropriate and helpful." [See my 9/24 issue for more on the ESRB and its ratings.]


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