I'm not a philosopher, so I apologize if this is a generally stupid question, but I was curious to hear what people thought.
Scenario: Consider a "Star Trek" like future, with a technological advancement like a Holodeck. (For those not familiar with the concept- it's effectively a room where artificial recreations (using light) of objects can be created and interacted with, for more see this entry). One of the features of these rooms is that the "safety threshold" can be modified by the user. While it generally includes settings that ensure the user cannot be too grievously harmed by any activities in the holodeck, these protocols can be overridden.
Suppose, as well, that an individual in this future society was reading about Earth's history and came across stories of gladiators, and thought about recreating it as a sport in the holodeck. Any individual who freely volunteered would be pitted against a "beast" holodeck facsimile of his or her choosing. The "fighter" would then be pitted against their opponent in a holodeck, but with all safety features turned off. Thus, if the "fighter" won, the only damage would be the "death" of a computer simulation (who, for the purposes of this scenario, we'll assume not to be sentient in any way- it really is just a projection of altered light). However, if the "beast" won, the individual could be mortally wounded.
Furthermore, it should be noted, that the "fighter" maintains complete control over the simulation at all times. If they choose to stop the battle, all they must do is think a command to the computer, which ends the simulation. (Which is a bit different than ST, but perhaps a necessary detail).
Finally, given that this is a Star Trek like future, resource scarcity has been eliminated. Replicators exist and are available to all citizens. Thus, if you have a physical need (or really any want for an object), it can be satisfied effortlessly.
Question: How should a just society respond to this proposed game? Should it take no position on it, given that entry is clearly completely voluntary (at least, not compelled by any physical need or want) and is at the control of the fighter at all times? Should it be allowed, but with some restrictions? (And if so, what restrictions would you favor?) Or should it be banned entirely?
Perhaps taking it a step further, perhaps there was some social status gained by "fighters," or some other social advantage to volunteering. Does that change the calculus? Where, in your opinions, should the line be drawn between social benefits that are allowable, and those that are too coercive?
If any clarification is needed, I'll try to add it. That said, I'm really interested to see where you guys go with the set up!!