The National Rifle Association has launched a new iPhone app that teaches users how to shoot a virtual firearm at a practice range. Titled NRA: Practice Range and developed by MEDL Mobile, the app offers a “3D shooting game that instills safe and responsible ownership through fun challenges and realistic simulations.” Anyone can play it… providing you’re aged four or above.
That’s right — the app is aimed at users aged just four and above.
It doesn’t just allow you to shoot things; according to the app’s description, it’s “the NRA’s new mobile nerve center,” where you’ll find “one-touch access to the NRA network of news, laws, facts, knowledge, safety tips, educational materials and online resources.” All of these things are available via the app’s main menu, but as noted by The Next Web, all they do is link to the relevant sections of the NRA’s website.
The focus of the app is clearly the firing range, then, which offers three different game modes, including indoor range, outdoor range, and skeet shoot. There’s nothing really violent about it — apart from all the guns, of course — but you don’t shoot people or animals. It also attempts to educate users with a number of gun safety tips and facts on each loading screen.
But despite all this, it still seems strange that the app is aimed at anyone aged four and up. It comes at a time when there’s a lot of focus on the NRA and U.S. gun laws following the tragic school shooting in Connecticut last month. As The Appside puts it: “Is now the best time for a National Rifle Association (NRA) 3D shooting game? We’d suggest not.”