All this is to say that while uninformed anti-game sensationalism may be unproductive, gamers’ reflexive defensiveness is worse. It’s prevented us from having a meaningful conversation about an industry that is emotionally and morally stunted, where per-title revenue can dwarf even the most successful films of all time but which seems immune from discussions of taste and artistic merit. A higher-up at one of the largest game publishers in the world once confided in me that when his bosses showed him early footage from a popular first-person shooter produced by another studio in the company, he couldn’t bring himself to watch to the end.