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Bleszinski: Violent game critics 'flatter' industry

We're the new rock'n'roll - but they're still scary, says Epic man

Epic design chief Cliff Bleszinski has told CVG that, in their own way, critics of video game violence pay the industry a compliment - as they inadvertently suggest interactive entertainment is "the new rock and roll".

Epic has just put the finishing touches to FPS Bulletstorm with Polish studio People Can Fly.

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The game doesn't pull any punches with its violent content or adult content, but has a humorous over-the-top edge.

Its Skillshot kill system reward players are for the inventive brutalising of foes. Little wonder then, that it's been given an '18' BBFC and PEGI rating, and an 'M' for Mature in the US.

When asked about the prospect of Bulletstorm being an obvious target for the anti-violence league, Bleszinski told CVG:

"You know the violence in games, the language and all those issues are issues... on one hand I've always found [that] very scary, that people are attacking the industry.

"But on the other hand, I have found it somewhat flattering because it's one of those situations where the fact that people think 'ooh, big scary video games are ruining the world', I guess, means that we're the new rock and roll, the new Elvis, the new Dungeons and Dragons, the new moving pictures.

"It means we're clearly hitting a nerve somewhere. I could talk all day about the tone of the violence in [Bulletstorm]. It's very tongue in cheek."

Bleszinski was at pains to express that although Bulletstorm's violence is certainly over the top, it never loses its comedic edge.

He added: "There wasn't any sort of process [during the game's creation] where we considered ripping off someone's head and shitting down the neck or something like that. It was all in the name of fun."

Bulletstorm is released for 360, PS3 and PC on February 22 in the US, and three days later in Europe.

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