First-person shooter games have been popular for years, but have you seen anything like this before? Developers work tirelessly to create a more immersive experience with each new release.
However, a trailer for the new game Unrecorded has been met with extreme emotions ranging from wonder to disgust. Wonder because of how realistic it is and disgust and concern for the same reason.
Rarely do games get criticized for their graphics being too realistic, but this is precisely what is happening here. If you look at the video below, you should see why this game has become such a controversial topic.
The first-person shooter (developed by French company Drama) successfully imitates a body-mounted camera’s perspective and unsteady nature, creating a visual aesthetic that has confused people since it doesn’t look like any computer game we have seen before.
One of the creators, Alexandre Spindler, has turned to Twitter to say that the footage seen in the teaser was not pre-rendered but captured from real-time gameplay, so rest assured that Unrecorded is an actual first-person shooter game.
It’s understandable why many people think Unrecorded will be a virtual reality game, given the game’s intricate physical reload animations. Yet, a Frequently Asked Questions section on the Steam page claims that the standard keyboard and mouse have been used to handle all of the demonstrated gameplay. Although the developers have not announced any supported systems, it can be played with a controller.
Criticizing how realistic the thriller appears, many people have called for the monitoring of underage users when the game becomes mainstream. Some have even compared the released clip to footage from a military operation which is very disturbing. Some have even compared it to the footage sometimes shared on the darkest side of the web, such as school shootings.
No doubt, shooting human targets in a game with such visuals could cause a lot of mental stress for specific players. People also suggest that if the human targets were to be replaced by monsters, the game would be easier to play and wouldn’t promote violence against real people.
The developers are yet to notify the public whether or not they are looking to address these concerns. However, more criticism may arise should the game be released mainstream without any adjustments to make it less lifelike.
AI is, without doubt, the topic of 2023 so far, and the quality of the graphics on display here are causing a lot of people to worry about what the future of games might look like. This could be taken even further, as many wonder what our society will look like as technology advances.
Making such assumptions about a computer game might be a big jump. Still, it could be argued that games of this nature will desensitize people, especially vulnerable or young people, to actual real-life violence.
Not too dissimilar to a Black Mirror episode, could these games, instead of solely intended for fun one day, lead to something much more sinister?