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Fri Dec 27, 2019, 01:13 PM

Grand Theft Auto V becomes latest battleground of Hong Kong protests

The online duel began after Hong Kong players discovered that their in-game avatars could dress like protesters, wearing black clothing, gas masks and yellow safety helmets. They shared the discovery last week on LIHKG, a social media platform and discussion forum similar to Reddit that is popular in Hong Kong.

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While most video games keep the player busy on a predetermined course of action, open-world games allow greater freedom to explore. And it didn't take long for Hong Kong gamers to begin mimicking the real-life actions of hardcore protesters by throwing petrol bombs, vandalizing train stations and attacking police within the open world of GTA V.

Mainland Chinese gamers were quick to notice, and several of them subsequently took to the Twitter-like social media platform Weibo to call on other players to defeat their Hong Kong rivals.
Using a derogatory term adopted by some police officers to refer to protesters, one Weibo user posted: "Cockroaches expressed their desire to kill GTA and beat us, the war in this game may become more fierce and fierce. Are you ready?"

Other Weibo users responded by posting screenshots of their characters dressed as riot police and wielding guns, with the posts captioned: "Ready!"

https://www.cnn.com/2019/12/27/tech/grand-theft-auto-hong-kong-intl-hnk/index.html

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