Kick Cats and Have Fun

This a dowloadable app (application or program) that is for the iPhone and iPad. It is called Hackycat. It is a computer game for handheld devices. You can play it on these devices to keep yourself amused while you’re on the bus or train or killing time. It cost $0.99 to download.

The game is described as:

Save really cute cats from exploding. By kicking them.

The way you kick the cats is by tapping the screen. These devices, as you know, have touch sensitive screens. You keep the cats in the air by continually kicking them and if a cat hits the ground the game is over. The game is also over, if you hit a “bird bomb” as it flies by.

Here is a video demo:

The graphics are good. They are by Ken Wong and the game was created by him as well.

That is what it is. Now, the question I have is this: “Is it an acceptable game for kids?” I am not going to prejudge and condemn because I’m probably acquiring a reputation as a grumpy old curmudgeon. I am not, but I do struggle to find these sorts of games and videos acceptable.

My personal view is that they might encourage cat abuse and cruelty. I am one of those people who believe that TV and film violence encourages real violence. I realise this is a hot and never ending debate and there are arguments on both sides. However, I believe that continually bombarding young people with images, both still and moving (movies) of violence of any kind, gradually alters the person’s perceptions of violence and distorts the immorality of gratuitous violence. The same can be said of magazines showing super slender girls. I believe that these images puts pressure on girls to be unnaturally slim which can lead to mental health problems (anorexia, for example).

I think in this instance Hackycat is particularly insensitive because there are specific cases of kids kicking cats and killing cats in this way. It is almost as if the idea for the game is based on real life experiences or news stories.

Ken Wong probably wanted to, somehow, incorporate the obsession with funny cat videos and cheeseburger still images into a game (cheeseburgers also feature in the game). It is a game that attempts to cash in on the funny cat video/image cult, which is fading in my opinion, thankfully.

If you have got this far, you’ll understand my ideas about this game; in summary: it should not be on sale. What do you think? I respect other people’s views completely.

Note: if the video goes dead for some reason this is a screenshot:

Hackycat screenshot. If someone objects to this image just ask me to remove it in a comment and I’ll do it within 12 hours, guaranteed.
Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

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Useful tag. Click to see the articles: Cat behavior

10 thoughts on “Kick Cats and Have Fun”

  1. I researched this a bit and it would seem even the people publicising the game admit there is animal cruelty involved and that although it’s not right they still think the game is fun. It would seem nobody takes virtual violence seriously anymore.

    Personally I hope the idiot who had the stupid idea of making this game drops dead in his sleep. What a total moron. What a cheap way to cash in on cats. I guess he will get alot of bad publicity over it and deserves every bit of it. Personally I think it’s appalling.

    1. What a cheap way to cash in on cats

      That is what I think it is too. A version of exploiting cats. It is a cheap exploitation too as it is combination of cheeseburger cats (funny pics with captions) and funny cat videos. The more I think of it the more I dislike it. Apple shouldn’t sell it. I don’t think Apple are doing themselves any good by being associated with this. Companies need to take a more moral stance.

  2. I agree with you Michael Sometimes with these games reality can become blurred. As with any violence thats available for public viewing I just think that violence begets violence (depending on the person/kid). For example I could watch a film about a murder and would give it no more thought yet another person who already had violent tendencies may look to carry out what he/her had seen on the screen.
    I think its the same with this a child with little or no parental control may watch this and think ‘hey this is fun, wonder if it would be better with a real cat?!’ sorry perhaps I’m wrong but I just think its a definite possibility.

  3. Ruth aka Kattadorra

    I think games like this encourage animal abuse!
    Kids playing it, once the idea is in their heads, might think how much more fun it would be to go out and kick real cats.
    Whoever invents things like this are thoughtless money making morons.

  4. It’s only a game, but it contains offensive ideals. I guess it depends on the kid. I think most parents wouldn’t care one way or the other, and I guess that is an issue all of itself. My nephews would be mad about the game. Their younger sister would think it’s funny. Thankfully nothing like that will be played under this roof.

    1. Thanks Dan. I think you are correct. It does depend on the kid. Perhaps some kids who don’t like cats might be tempted into doing the real thing by this game. What do your kids think? Can they leave a comment?

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