Last night I started playing Mafia Wars, even though I swore I never would. If I make it to level 10 then I get a huge bonus–worth $10 real money–in FarmVille.
Wait–I’m going somewhere.
Mafia Wars is one of the most popular games on Facebook. It’s basically an MMORPG where you are given a mathematical allotment of points and choose how to spend those points interacting with other players. Fine. I’ve played games like this before and enjoyed them. But this MOST POPULAR GAME offers choices like “Warehouse Robbery”, “Perform a Hit” and my least favourite “Take Out a Rogue Cop”.
Many of the other popular games on Facebook involve having neighbours–other Facebook friends who also play the game–and then stealing from those neighbours. Actively taking game points they’ve earned, fish they’ve raised or rewards they display.
I realise I’m just a few months shy of 40, and this is one of those “kids these days” things….but why is all this wretchedness so popular? Doesn’t it make you sad to think that these things, things like robbery and murder, are considered fun and funny casual pastimes?