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X-rated 'GTA: San Andreas' setting AmTaliban on fire

I’ve not played this, but who’s surprised that the programmers of the video Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas put in an Easter Egg, or undocumented extra “treat” that can be unlocked by those in the know. RockStar Games is in hot water because its “treat” is apparently pretty damn randy. The question is whether the patch (from a third party source) that enables the porn mod is actually additional programming put into the game, or the content was already there and the code just gives you access to the fun.

Graphic sexual content that appears in a popular video game is giving family advocates a new reason to be offended. In the sex-and-violence-themed game “Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas,” the main character tries to avenge the murder of his mother in the gang-ridden streets of his hometown — and picks up women along the way.

The sexual content, which fills in what publisher RockStar Games left to the imagination in the versions sold in stores — was either “unlocked” by game enthusiasts who discovered it in Rockstar’s code, or introduced by inventive third-party hackers. That content has irked The National Institute on the Media and the Family, a Minneapolis-based group that issued a nationwide parental alert Friday denouncing the game and its creator.

“While San Andreas is already full of violent behavior and sexual themes, the pornographic sex scenes push it over the edge,” David Walsh, the group’s founder, said Friday. The sex scene in GTA3, as the game is commonly known, was allegedly unleashed by a game enthusiast from the Netherlands. The author claims his game modification called “hot coffee” is merely a small download that allows the player to access sexual content that exists in off-the-shelf copies of the game from New York-based Rockstar Games.

The AP sent e-mails to the author of the mod, but there was no immediate response from him or the co-author.

Admittedly, “Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas” is already one of the more violent and lurid games on the market. It’s full of speeding cars, gangs and gunplay, and “girlfriends” who invariably met on the street wearing skimpy clothing. After downloading and installing the patch, a new world opens up, according to the author of the game modification patch, in which “the girlfriends will now be completely nude,” according to a short text document included with the patch.

…“This is about kids,” Walsh said. “Can you imagine the impact of 13, 14 and 15 year old boys literally enacting this scene?”

My question is why are kids this age playing a game rated R? Isn’t that the purpose of the ratings anyway — to let the PARENTS decide what their children should play?

Thanks to House Blender Paul for the pointer.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding