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Sniper Games

During the 2002 "Beltway Sniper" attacks, Florida Attorney Jack Thompson suggested that the beltway sniper could be a teenager who had trained on sniping video games, and could possibly be as young as fifteen. He based this hypothesis on information he had learned working on the Paducah school shooting case. In that case, the shooter had trained on sniper games to get himself ready for the actual shooting. When they caught the beltway snipers, it was revealed that one of them, John Lee Malvo was only seventeen. Not only that, but he had trained on the Xbox video game "Halo" in sniper mode to get desensitized and break down his inhibition to kill.

The United States Army has it's own video game, designed to recruit teenagers into the Army. In the video game "America's Army" children assume the roles of soldiers, and do operations as such. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court of the United States is questioning whether Microsoft, the company that makes the video game "Halo" Should be held liable for the deaths in the beltway sniper episode and the Paducah school shootings, as the sniper game was used by the shooters to practice. Some opponents of video violence, and especially first person shooting simulators, have said that this is all the evidence the government should need to ban, or atleast regulate more strongly, the levels of video violence present in sniper games.

There are many sniper games on the market that center around precision shooting. "Sniper elite" by Namco, "sniper 2" by midway, "Sniper Path of Vengeance" "counterstrike" and "Silent Scope" to name a few. At present, there has been no attempt to ban these games. All have a rating of "adult" and a warning of strong violent themes.