Why Some Games Say “Don’t Try This At Home”

Many video games nowadays have some form of action. Sometimes, that action is not possible in the real world, usually because it’s restricted by law or something else. That’s why some games have a “Don’t Try This At Home” disclaimer. This is usually applied for games that feature outrageous stunts or death-defying acts. Anybody with little common sense, mostly children, will end up actually trying to do these things without the proper training or safety precautions. The consequences would be serious injury or death, and would lead to they or their family (if killed) filing a lawsuit against the original developers. Sometimes, this is played for laughs in a game. Let’s take a look at a few examples my titles where it would apply.

The Drillimation Danmaku Universe games are a prime example of advising players not to do real-life danmaku duels. In the actual DDU, it is considered a dangerous activity. If an actual disclaimer was done, it would go out like this:

Danmaku is a way to put on a fun light show. However, it is a dangerous combat sport. All danmaku fights in this game are fought by trained danmaku experts. For your safety, do not attempt to recreate any of the fights you see.

Apparently, the majority of violent games should have this disclaimer. Some of them have, but others don’t. Some visual novels have done this as well, but not Doki-Doki Literature Club, a title rated R for violent content including suicide. The above disclaimer should’ve been in the game after somebody killed themselves after playing it. If it did, it would include the following:

This game contains images that may be disturbing to some players. For the safety and protection of yourself and those around you, do not attempt to recreate or reenact any of the images you see. Attempting to do so may lead to serious injury or even death, and we cannot be held liable for any damage done.

If it were an anime that aired at around 7PM and the above happened, it would get pushed to 11PM and include the disclaimer to remind players that:

This is a horror title with disturbing images. The characters in this game are humanoids, depicted as cute anime girls. Some of the images in this game would cause you to get hurt, expelled, arrested, or possibly deported. In a nutshell, don’t try these things at home.

I know what I said was off-topic, but those are the consequences of trying to do these things in the real world.

Mad Father, another game well-known in the RPG Maker community, is controversial in many aspects regarding its content, which includes various acts that could be otherwise illegal in real life, including:

  • Murder (there are scenes which the game’s antagonist Alfred kills people for his heinous plans)
  • Child Neglect (Alfred seemingly abandons Aya (the game’s protagonist) shortly after his wife’s death)
  • Taxidermy of humans (Alfred’s heinous plot involving murder and corpses has this as the goal)

Because of all the controversial content, again, Emiko Hosokawa of the Vietnam-based Studio Emiko has been wanting to boycott and nuke the game off the shelves in the Vietnamese market, once again based on her Catholic views. You can read more about this in my previous post Why the ESRB Doesn’t Classify Thematic Material.

Please stay safe, players.


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