Empathy for pixels

Intriguing quote in recent Escapist review of Multiwinia:

In some crucial ways, Multiwinia’s sound design establishes a stronger emotional connection with the on-screen carnage than some gory AAA first-person shooters. Perhaps simplicity breeds empathy, but in any case I felt more guilty sending mobs of rudimentary sprites into the teeth of rapid-fire gun turrets than I ever have realistically gibbing an opponent’s face with a flak cannon.

Are we supposed to feel empathy for casualties in FPS’s? And is sound design effective in Multiwinia because of novelty or because of something more primal than visuals?