Trivia

Hard

Protest Over Which Video Game, Counterintuitively, Led To More Violent Games?

Mortal Kombat
Grand Theft Auto
Doom
Carmageddon
An example of a fatality in Mortal Kombat.
SEGA

Answer: Mortal Kombat

Mortal Kombat was the inaugural release in the long-running Mortal Kombat fighting game series and is both infamous and iconic thanks to its influence on the industry and on the greater culture around it.

After its release in 1992, Mortal Kombat quickly garnered attention from concerned parents, politicians, and pundits. While the game seems dated and tame by today’s standards, in the early 1990s, the level of violence and gore in the game wasn’t your standard arcade and home-gaming fare. In the game, combatants could outright dismember their opponents with “fatalities”—finishing moves that involved exterminating your opponent by ripping off their head, tearing out their spine, or otherwise bloodily ending the fight.

The game was released on the Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) platforms, but the sales on the Sega system outpaced the sales on the SNES by a margin of 5 to 1. Sega had made no effort to censor the game and Nintendo maintained a strict policy of censoring and minimizing gore and objectionable content in their games.

The protest over the violence in the game eventually reached public-outcry levels and there was a congressional hearing on video game violence from late 1992 to 1993. One of the outgrowths of this hearing was the development of the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB). Whenever you see a rating tag on the corner of a video game box, you’re seeing the work of the ESRB.

The great irony of the rating system is that it ultimately lead to more violent video games. Nintendo, one of the biggest names in gaming, decided that the advent of a rating system allowed parents to make effective decisions over the content their children were consuming and opted to relax their policies regarding censorship and violence in video games. As a result, more video games with the very violent and objectionable content that had inspired the congressional inquiry (and subsequent rating system) flooded the market.

When Mortal Kombat II was released, the uncensored SNES version easily held its own with the Sega Genesis version.

Trivia

Easy

Which Class Of Invertebrates Is Considered The Most Intelligent?

Trivia

Easy

Which Animal Carries Its Favorite Tools With It?

Trivia

Hard

Which Iconic American Food Was Originally Packaged In Cologne Bottles?

Trivia

Hard

Which Game Company Released a Game Parodying Their Eventual Demise?

Trivia

Hard

Long Before Virtual Game Achievements Were A Thing, Activision Would Mail Gamers?

Trivia

Hard

Which U.S. Coin Has A Value Equal To Its Mass?

Trivia

Easy

The Theme Song Of Which Popular TV Show Was Actually Performed By The Star Of The Show?

Trivia

Easy

What Was Once Considered Cruel And Unusual Punishment To Feed Inmates?

Trivia

Easy

What Is Believed To Be At The Center Of Nearly Every Galaxy?

Trivia

Very Hard

The Only Moon In Our Solar System That Has A Magnetic Field Is?