Grand Theft Auto has nothing on these games 

Innocence Lost

As any parent can attest, few things are more difficult these days than raising a kid. There are simply too many forces out there trying to corrupt the wee ones.

There's Miley Cyrus in a fluorescent green bra. There's Miley Cyrus and her bare back in a Vanity Fair photo shoot. There's Miley Cyrus in the most horrible blond wig this side of Rip Taylor's closet. What's a parent to do?

Of course, the horrors of Hannah Montana pale in comparison to the evils that can be inflicted by Niko Bellic, star of Grand Theft Auto IV. In the game, Niko engages in all sorts of dastardly deeds — the kind of things that would send a person in the real world to the pen, but in the make-believe gangsta-land of GTA IV, these are the very things that players are encouraged to do. Which is why it's no surprise that concerned parents and psychologists get their boy shorts in a bunch whenever a new Grand Theft Auto title hits the streets.

But Grand Theft Auto isn't the only game out there tempting teens and tweens. Nope. We here at the City Paper have recently been alerted to a new batch of titles from Dog Gone Games, which are far worse than anything currently out there.

The first title in Dog Gone's lineup is Runway of the Damned. In this game, you play the role of an up-and-coming Lowcountry fashion designer. The game is fairly simple — you try to make it from one end of the runway to the next. But there's a hitch: The runway is alive, and it has a taste for human flesh. One false step on the catwalk, and you fall into the belly of the beast. What makes this game particularly despicable is that the scene of your demise is shown again and again and again on the screen. And apparently, there's no stopping it. You can reset the game. You can unplug the console. You can turn the TV on and off. But like John Graham Altman, it won't go away.

The next game is a racer titled Scott Free, in which you star as a Dorchester County lawmaker running for reelection. Your goal: to check up on your campaign signs around town. Players score points by driving over the signs. The only problem is that the signs aren't exactly on the side of the road. Some are in flower beds. Some are hiding behind yard gnomes. Some are in dining rooms. As a result, you have to swerve all over the place. But watch out — drive a little too erratically and you'll get pulled over by a sheriff's deputy.

In the first-person shooter The Breeders, players assume the role of a Charleston County School Board member. Armed with only a gun — a fearsome and ferocious firearm called The Sterilizer — the board member hunts down negligent parents and zaps their reproductive organs, all the while battling hordes of angry members of the NAACP. Only the most skilled players will make it to the final boss — the Welfare Queen.

Last but not least, there's the game which is sure to get a five-star review in The Charleston Mercury — It's called The Neighbors: South of Broad. In this sim-style game, players take on the identity of a child born to a family living along the Battery. As that character ages, you have important choices to make that will affect your future — Porter-Gaud or Bishop England? To tap the trust fund or get a job? A navy blue blazer and khakis or khakis and a navy blue blazer? But while the early stages of the game are tame enough, in the later levels the game takes a decidedly kid un-friendly turn. Cocaine use. Key parties. Republican fund-raisers. Grade-A degenerate stuff. If you do everything the right way, you might get elected to state office, but make a wrong move and you could be face down in the pluff mud.

So parents, take heed, and do whatever you can to protect your children. When it comes to the seduction of the innocent, Niko Bellic is the least of your worries.


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