Even as the world stood shocked over the gruesome terrorist attack that left Oslo and the whole of Norway benumbed, first hand reports suggest a link between video games and this horrific attack carried out by Anders Behring Breivik. Apparently, Breivik had sent a 1500-page manifesto, “2083: A European Declaration of Independence” to around 1000 people an hour before the attack. In this manifesto he referred to not knowing much about guns and shooting. He also mentioned that he lacked 'target practice' and how Modern Warfare 2 and World of Warcraft aided his training.
Oslo killer used games to train
A few of the references from his manifesto:
‘Target practice is likely going to be a problem for many people in certain countries (urban Europeans like us, ouch:). Consider taking a vacation to a country where you are able to train in marksmanship or join a gun club. Simulation by playing Call of Duty, Modern Warfare is a good alternative as well but you should try to get some practise with a real assault rifle (with red point optic) if possible.’
‘I just bought Modern Warfare 2, the game. It is probably the best military simulator out there and it’s one of the hottest games this year. I played MW1 as well but I didn’t really like it as I’m generally more the fantasy RPG kind of person – Dragon Age Origins etc .and not so much into first person shooters. I see MW2 more as a part of my training-simulation than anything else. I’ve still learned to love it though and especially the multiplayer part is amazing. You can more or less completely simulate actual operations.’
Video games have always been a source of entertainment and a bone of contention with those who believe it abets violence. On numerous ocassions video games have been cited as triggers, never before at least as far as my memory aids me, have they been used to train oneself for a heinous terrorist act, like this one. Anders Behring Breivik went on record recommending people to use Modern Warfare 2 for ‘Training’ and World of Warcraft for ‘Cover’.