The Ethics of Role-Playing Video Games

Abstract
In this project, I explore the ethics of interactive role-playing video games. After explicating a wide range of issues contained in these games, I argue that they belong in the realm of fiction. Using the theory of Response Moralism, I argue that the emotions we feel in response to fictions, which includes role-playing games, are real and morally assessable. I then present an attack on escapism, which I challenge by arguing that evincing virtues and vices is possible within a video game or virtual reality. I end my project with a discussion of the ways in which race and gender are represented in video games, alongside an applied case of response moralism. I make the conclusion that role-playing video games are morally significant works, which are worthy of philosophical attention.
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