Drakengard 3, this week's most unusual release, attempts to mitigate violence-born cognitive dissonance. "[When] we were working on the original Drakengard that I thought about the meaning of 'killing,'" explains director Yoko Taro in a new interview, "I was looking at a lot of games back then, and I saw these messages like 'You've defeated 100 enemies!' or 'Eradicated 100 enemy soldiers!' in an almost gloating manner. But when I thought about it in an extremely calm state of mind, it hit me that gloating about killing a hundred people is strange. I mean, you're a serial killer if you killed a hundred people. It just struck me as insane. That's why I decided to have the army of the protagonist in Drakengard be one where everyone's insane, to create this twisted organization where everyone's wrong and unjust. I wanted to weave a tale about these twisted people."
That's just one solution, though. Another approach is to ignore it entirely. Wolfenstein: The New Order is full of great characters, but none of them ever bat an eye at B.J. Blazkowicz killing literally thousands of people. The question then is this: Do you want violent games to justify your actions? Do you want a shooter or hack-and-slash to make you question the morality of killing? Or do those moral stakes not matter, at least not in every game? Take the poll, discuss in the comments.