Religion & Beliefs
Six Insane Online Games With Political Agendas
"Religious hate has never been so much fun,” promises the tagline of the online video game Faith Fighter. A prominent release by Molleindustria—an Italian game development studio that specializes in bizarre, arthouse Flash web games—Faith Fighter is one of a … Read More
"Religious hate has never been so much fun,” promises the tagline of the online video game Faith Fighter. A prominent release by Molleindustria—an Italian game development studio that specializes in bizarre, arthouse Flash web games—Faith Fighter is one of a handful of religiously motivated games on the Internet. Are these games effective? What are they even trying to do? We asked Craig, Jewcy's Technology Officer and resident gamer, to weigh in.
To answer this question, Craig experienced everything from Faith Fighter's non-denominational, one-on-one, beat 'em up appeal to Eternal Forces' Christian evangelism to the hysterically fanatical Jihadi simulator Night of Bush Capturing. Generally speaking, he was unimpressed.
"Is game development for holy rollers just too hard," he wondered, "or are they just not trying hard enough?"
Here are his reviews:
I was totally excited about this game when I first saw it. "Choose your belief and kick the shit out of your enemies," the game advertises. Finally, pacifist Buddhism gets a chance to go toe-to-toe with the heavy-hitters. And with two representatives, how can they lose?
Easy: in this game, no one wins. I don't mean that literally, of course—I don't doubt that any of the Jewcy staffers could sail through this on the "Normal" difficulty setting—but for a game that purports to help players consider how religious representations can be used to fuel conflict, there is little opportunity for actual reflection. No parallels are ever drawn between what's happening in the game's battles and the real world, and, in the end, even the characters' special powers have precious little to do with actual religious lore. Why does God immolate himself in a pillar of flame? Why can Mohammed turn invisible?
I like the quirky, hand-drawn graphics, but aside from that, there's not much going for this game aside from shock appeal.
|Jewcy's Final Word is: SUCKS.|
This game looks and plays almost exactly like Faith Fighter, except it's much more polished. While I respect that, unfortunately…
|Jewcy's Final Word is: STILL SUCKS.|
Ethnic Cleansing may be the greatest thing working against the modern white nationalist movement. A small, personal project by two, let's say, independent game developers (the critically acclaimed "D. Bryan Ringer" and "Bob Hawthorne"). This game couldn't suck more if the developers were wearing bags over their heads (as opposed to sheets, I guess). In a thread on neo-Nazi organization Stormfront's website, users rank the game "1.5 out of 5", described it as "not the greatest quality in the world," and said, simply: "The game sucks." (The thread peters off a few posts in when one user admits that he'll never buy the game because he'd have to pay with credit cards and, personally, he "objects the use of credit cards and therefor [sic] don't own one."
There are only a few enemy models in this game, and they mostly consist of black guys with Afros wearing basketball jerseys with the word "NIGZ" or pictures of cannabis plants on the front. There are Mexicans dressed in ponchos and sombreros, and strange, AK-47 wielding Hasidim that live in the subway. Ho-hum.
The only thing remotely clever about this game is that it promises "Real Negro sounds," which wind up being the sounds of screeching monkeys. Very crafty, Bob Hawthorne.
|Jewcy's Final Word is: SUCKS.|
What do you get when you cross a working knowledge of a single bible story, a handful of stock 3D animal graphics and a sixth-grade education? I dunno, but who gives a shit? We're playing The Zoo Race Game! I really gotta hand it to developer Cougar Interactive. They're (He is?) legitimately the most batshit crazy game makers out there. And I just finished playing a game where you must fight wave after wave of black people on city streets in order to assassinate Ariel Sharon.
Like so many other purportedly "religious" games, Zoo Race simply slaps a coat of Jesus-paint on a secular-themed game (in this case, "racing") and hopes that that's enough to make the sales. It's not. Although the craftsmanship in The Zoo Race Game is noticeably higher than, say, Ethnic Cleansing, the animation remains abysmal, the execution and control are shoddy and lack finesse, and the premise is mind-bogglingly ridiculous.
In order to truly appreciate The Zoo Race Game, you need to watch its promotional movie. Trust me on this and watch, okay?
|Jewcy's Final Word is: MINDBOGGLINGLY SUCKY.|
It's a relief to get back into the realm of hate-based games, but I really don't feel that much hate here.
Aside from the neat chanting that blares throughout this game, there's really very little reason to play. Every weapon at your disposal is exactly like every other weapon (except the grenade launcher, which is unique in that it doesn't do anything at all). Your avatar has a Super Mario-esque ability to jump three times his own height. The story claims you're a Mujahid traveling around a U.S. Special Forces' camp (that Bush is inexplicably hanging around in), but it seems more like you're at some bizarre Coalition-themed Disney World in Tikrit.
We've seen this all before and it sucks now just as much as it sucked then. What's really disturbing is the amount of outrage that has been directed at this game since its release. It's not a threat to anybody, and it's not even that fun to play.
|Jewcy's Final Word is: ??? (SUCKS).|
Unfortunately, this game is one of the most disturbingly creepy, "Praise Jesus" experiences I've ever been forced to endure.
Your task is to lead the good holy people of New York in banding together, buying up all the Duane Reades and abandoned factories, and converting or murdering all the non-believers. Well, you're really only supposed to murder the guys who are hostile to you. But God understands, right?
I gotta give the developers credit, though. The game has a full (albeit derivative) 3D New York City, with tons of random people in the streets. It's neat that the game lets you click on any individual character and hear about his life's history (and, if applicable, how he or she found Jesus), but some of the stories started to disturb me. One "bad guy," the game claims, used to work as a TV News Producer during the time that the Moon Landing was staged. How enlightening!
In all seriousness, though, this game is really not that bad. It does what every other one of these games could've done: created an engaging storyline that is centered around religion (but not entirely beholden to it), with production values that don't distract from the gameplay.
Now if only it wasn't so creepy…
|Jewcy's Final Word is: DOESN'T SUCK THAT MUCH.|