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Friday, December 15, 2000

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MacNN on Oni Violence
8:09 AM | IMG News | Comment on this story has written an editorial titled "The New Face of Gaming" in which they offer an opinion on the removal of blood from Bungie's third-person 3D action game, Oni, and the repercussions of the decision to do so. Here is an excerpt:

The removal of Oni's realistic violence is designed to make the game appeal to the widest possible demographic and thus increase sales. Oni is no longer a game meant solely for the Macintosh and Windows platforms, but is also Bungie's first foray into the world of console gaming with its PlayStation 2 version. The target market has changed and it makes good business sense to tone down its original vision in order to sell as many copies as possible.

While it goes without saying that a video game company needs to find a balance between what different customer groups want, there are always happy mediums. Considering the years of work put into Oni, an effort could have been made to have the game's excessive violence be something that could be parentally controlled via a password system or other available technology.
It should be noted that the article suggests that the weapons in the game have been 'toned down'; in our experience with the game (which goes back to early 1999) the weapons were always extremely weak, and were used mainly to stun your opponent -- even the rocket launcher. The point of such a weapons balance was of course to focus the action on hand-to-hand combat, which is where the game really shines. There is also no official confirmation from Bungie that the blood was removed solely for the purpose of broadening the sales base. For the rest of the article, be sure to head over to

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