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Religion in Video Games

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the neptune-vs-noah-deathmatch dept.

Games 523

The Opposable Thumbs blog recently took a look at how religious themes are handled in video games. Most makers of mainstream games are hesitant, given the strong feelings of most consumers on the subject, but other companies are trying desperately to bring religion into the spotlight. Quoting: "Part of the problem is that the game industry is often touted as being a corrupting influence for the youth of the world. Criticism against the game industry has come from leaders as high up as the current Pope, and many of us who have been exposed to sermons bemoaning the influence that games and movies have on kids. Even when groups like the Christian Game Developers Foundation put out a video encouraging developers to create wholesome titles for kids, the attitude conveyed towards current members of the industry was contemptuous at best. Needless to say, games with heavy religious content are usually fringe projects, independently created and oftentimes sporting dodgy production values, because publishers wisely don't want to risk boycotts from legions of the faithful."

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My level 80 warlock (3, Funny)

baegucb (18706) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554068)

says religion has no say in games. And I'm on the good guys side ;)

First, make a good video game (5, Insightful)

Hawthorne01 (575586) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554070)

Then worry about the religious content. If it's not a good game (or movie, or song, or book) you can stuff it to the gills with religious messages, and no one outside of your particular religious community will ever buy it. Build a better game (or movie, or song, or book) and the world will come to you. (See: Sufjan Stevens, C.S. Lewis, VeggieTales, etc.).

Re:First, make a good video game (3, Insightful)

Akira Kogami (1566305) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554076)

Or you can make a good video game based on religious themes, mythology, and history, rather than one with religious messages. A lot of religious mythology would make pretty awesome settings for games.

Re:First, make a good video game (5, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554090)

But the whole point of these Christian "developers", like Christian "rock/pop musicians" is not to put out a quality product, it's to get the faithful to fork over money. Obviously these kinds of products are not going to be marketed at the mainstream, because the mainstream could give a shit about a bunch of whacked-out Evangelicals and snake-oil dealers.

Re:First, make a good video game (1)

Akira Kogami (1566305) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554100)

True, but that's not what I'm referring to.

Re:First, make a good video game (5, Insightful)

Monsuco (998964) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554170)

But the whole point of these Christian "developers", like Christian "rock/pop musicians" is not to put out a quality product, it's to get the faithful to fork over money.

In other words, rather then being the "snake oil" dealers you claim they are, they are just simply like every single business on the planet. They identify a market, then they look for a way to make money serving that market. There is clear demand for Christian Rock, and the customers obviously buy the music because they enjoy its message, just as one might buy a regular album (or especially a concept album) because one enjoys its message.

The only problem with video games is they are expensive to produce and to buy. A series of Christian games might work, but it is a gamble. Books and songs require relatively less staff than a video game. Of course, a game with an underlying religious message could very much stand a chance at success, but an expressly "Christian Game" might not.

Re:First, make a good video game (5, Insightful)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554276)

the only thing that you got right is that religion is a business like any other.

Re:First, make a good video game (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554478)

What did you get right?

Re:First, make a good video game (3, Interesting)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554300)

A lot of religious mythology would make pretty awesome settings for games.

"Bring me the foreskins of 100 Philistine warriors, bonus points for 200" - Quest from "A Lorena Bobbit in King Saul's court"

Re:First, make a good video game (5, Insightful)

paiute (550198) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554318)

A video game based on the Bible would be more violent than GTA and have to be rated M++ for all the sex.

Re:First, make a good video game (4, Informative)

bertoelcon (1557907) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554310)

Like Dante's Inferno? Even though it isn't "canon" it would be good bits of Christian mythology. God of War has bases in Greek mythology. Stuff like that is probably as close as many companies would dare to get today to real world religions.

Re:First, make a good video game (2, Funny)

skuzzlebutt (177224) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554324)

Does praying that I can reload my auto-shotgun before the tank punts me across the room count?

Re:First, make a good video game (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554354)

Well I know the first time I spun around a corner popping off caps at a splicer and hit a Big Daddy in the ass by mistake as I ran like a little girl I was praying MY ass off!

Grammar and spelling in the article. (1, Offtopic)

brindafella (702231) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554082)

The grammar and spelling in the article are NOT good. The author, Michael Thompson, -- or "ars technica" -- should get an editor.

Re:Grammar and spelling in the article. (1)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554194)

The grammar and spelling in the article are NOT good. The author, Michael Thompson, -- or "ars technica" -- should get an editor.

I mean, after all, it works so well for /., right?

a game that tells the truth about religion (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554084)

How about someone create a game that occurs during the inquisition when the ignorant Christians killed thousands of people who wouldn't convert to their religion?

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554134)

How about someone create a game that occurs during the inquisition when the ignorant Christians killed thousands of people who wouldn't convert to their religion?

Or perhaps create a game that occurred in the 20th century and shows how atheists persecuted millions of Christians and Jews in the Soviet Union.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554180)

Or perhaps create a game that occurred in the 20th century and shows how atheists persecuted millions of Christians and Jews in the Soviet Union.

Atheism is a religion.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554198)

How about someone create a game that occurs during the inquisition when the ignorant Christians killed thousands of people who wouldn't convert to their religion?

Or perhaps create a game that occurred in the 20th century and shows how atheists persecuted millions of Christians and Jews in the Soviet Union.

Yup, mod someone a troll for criticizing atheism. Typical Slashdot bigotry. That's one reason why I typically don't read Slashdot any longer, because I know religion will be criticized no matter what while atheism is championed.

There are already games built on such premises including classics such as Wolfenstein. Get a clue, moderator.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (0, Troll)

something_wicked_thi (918168) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554214)

There's an obvious difference here. The Christians persecute others to spread their religion. Atheists persecute others for other reasons. In this case, it was to spread political ideas rather than religious ones. Religion is a direct cause of many murders while atheism cannot be blamed for it because there's nothing in the ideology about committing murder in the name of any superstition.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554256)

There's an obvious difference here. The Christians persecute others to spread their religion. Atheists persecute others for other reasons. In this case, it was to spread political ideas rather than religious ones. Religion is a direct cause of many murders while atheism cannot be blamed for it because there's nothing in the ideology about committing murder in the name of any superstition.

Christianity, Judaism, and Islam all tend to frown upon violence committed in the name of religion. Sure, there's still violence committed in the name of religion, but that's done by extremists. Some of those extremists have gained much power, but they do not represent the religions as a whole. Generally, extremists use their religious power to spread political ideas as well, which is exactly what the neo-conservatives do in the United States.

Of course, atheists have found religion to be a threat to their political ambitions. Most of those religions, when not being abused, oppose tyranny. Religion played a big role in diminishing the communist influence in eastern Europe.

And there are clear connections between atheism and politics. There's the classic quote:

"Religion... is the opiate of the masses." -- Karl Marx

Or if you prefer a more modern version...

"Religion is a crutch for the weak." -- Jesse Ventura

There's not a big difference, despite what you say.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554284)

I can't tell if you are trolling or simply an idiot. But using your justification I can easily say that those persecuting others because they aren't Christians aren't Christian because the bible condemns killing others. Same justification.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1)

something_wicked_thi (918168) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554474)

The bible in many places says to kill others, despite the so-called ten commandments, and encourages various forms of capital punishment, too, for violation of various laws. The new testament claims to do away with these laws, but one wonders why god made a book that was so important so ambiguous on the topic.

Perhaps you should try reading the book before commenting on it. I have. If the bible didn't tell people not to kill, then why have so many people been killed, say, for being witches because of the passage about not suffering a witch to live? Again, you can say Jesus did away with it, but as part of Christian doctrine, it's very definitely the bible that is to blame for that one.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1, Informative)

ShakaUVM (157947) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554308)

>>There's an obvious difference here. The Christians persecute others to spread their religion. Atheists persecute others for other reasons. In this case, it was to spread political ideas rather than religious ones.

LOL. How many people have Christians persecuted since, say, 1800? Quite few, if any. How many Christians have atheists killed for their Christianity? Quite a bit.

But I'm sure it makes you feel better that atheists did it because they didn't want to "spread their religion". Even though I'm rather quite sure the USSR persecuted Christians in order to, you know, spread atheism.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554390)

But I'm sure it makes you feel better that atheists did it because they didn't want to "spread their religion". Even though I'm rather quite sure the USSR persecuted Christians in order to, you know, spread atheism.

"Spread atheism," my ass. They encouraged fucking pilgrimages to observe the corpsicle of Lenin! Know what they didn't encourage? Skepticism, rationality, or reason! The three cornerstones of atheism.

  They created a goddamn religion around themselves and the state, complete with holy relics and faith-based "science." That's not atheism, so stop repeating that drivel. I'm guessing you're American, since American schools are so damn terrified to teach anything related to politics, that it churns out countless poor saps who don't understand that the label a politician slaps on himself usually has nothing to do with what he is.

For example: The "Union" of "Soviet" "Socialist" "Republics" was actually an Empire(1) of Anti-soviet(2) State-capitalist(3) Dictatorships.(4)

(1) - The satellite countries were generally added by military conquest, not some polite handshake, so it was Empire, not Union.
(2) - The Bolsheviks first borrowed the anti-Bolshevik slogan "All power to the soviets!" for themselves to confuse people like you, then when they had seized power, they disbanded the soviets (which were independent democratically run worker's councils) and told everyone that they were no longer a necessary component for the workers to control the means of production, because the will of the workers was now somehow metaphysically embodied in the premier. (Another religious theme!)
(3) - A socialist economy, where the workers actually controlled the means of production, was never anything more than a vague promise to be fulfilled, maybe, someday in the USSR. A rationed "command economy" was put in place as a "temporary" measure only for wartime. It never ended, because it gave the party too much power to skim and control. The whole system operated like one huge corrupt mega-corporation, except that the middle managers had guns and the cubicles were prisons.
(4) - The last is self explanatory. With only one candidate to vote for you don't even have the choice of the lesser of two evils, and you can't honestly call it a Republic.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1)

snl2587 (1177409) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554494)

I blame the pro-Christian slant used to counter the "godless heathen Soviets" in the U.S. during the Cold War for furthering the misconception, not necessarily because the schools are "terrified to teach anything related to politics", as you say. State distortions and mistruths take a while to dissipate, especially when they propagate across generations.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (4, Insightful)

name*censored* (884880) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554460)

There's an obvious difference here. The Christians persecute others to spread their religion. Atheists persecute others for other reasons. In this case, it was to spread political ideas rather than religious ones. Religion is a direct cause of many murders while atheism cannot be blamed for it because there's nothing in the ideology about committing murder in the name of any superstition.

... Unbelievable. You come within a hair's breadth of the astonishingly-obvious-yet-no-one-sees-it fact that the problem is not religion, it is extremism, of which religion is only a subset (though when I say subset I should say intersection, since at least one religious person doesn't want to go on a killing rampage). Yet you suddenly take a 90 degree turn and start rambling about how religion encourages murdering, even though it's explicitly banned in many (perhaps most) major religion and is only justified by twisting the words and intents of said religion (which is easy if your audience are uneducated peons, as they were during the Crusades/Inquisition).

Besides which, this should have rang alarm bells:

Atheists persecute others for other reasons

Quite frankly, I don't care if they're persecuting others to spread religion, spread ideology, or to sell chocolates. I don't care what they call themselves. The whole damn problem is the persecution. The reason, by comparison, is unimportant and interchangeable - that's the whole friggin' idea behind Skub vs anti-Skub.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1, Informative)

Teancum (67324) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554476)

In the case of the Soviet Union, it was precisely to "spread their religion" as atheism was explicitly the established state policy and explicitly by law persecuted all other religious philosophies with the ultimate goal of extinction of those philosophies.

I see little difference between the kinds of persecution that happened under the Soviet Union and that which was done in the 2nd & 3rd Centuries (AD, or "common era") against the Christians in the Roman Empire. Both were done for the very same reasons: to support and sustain the state religion.

Of current modern philosophies in play, that religion which is most intolerant of other philosophies is currently Islam. Comparing the number of incidents caused by "Christian terrorists" vs. "Islamic terrorists" or "Jewish terrorists" is no contest. And yes, both Christian (Northern Ireland) and Jewish (Palestine) terrorists have existed in the past, but they don't hold a candle to the destructive nature currently being done. It is also hard to compare the Crusades by King Richard (of England) vs. the Jihad of Saladin as both were destructive.

But I'd still go with the grandparent to point out that the Soviet Union, in the name of atheism, killed more than almost all of these religious crusades/jihads combined throughout nearly the entire history of mankind. It was certainly multiple times that killed by Hitler for religious reasons under the Third Reich. I was by far and away a much larger threat to other religious philosophies than any other philosophical movement ever.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1)

pydev (1683904) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554480)

Or perhaps create a game that occurred in the 20th century and shows how atheists persecuted millions of Christians and Jews in the Soviet Union.

That's a bad analogy because Christianity is a single religion (with lots of branches), but atheism is a collection of unrelated religions and philosophies.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554156)

Right after they make Total Eclipse [reason.com] , showing the brutality of Stalin's Russia.

Thousands of people killed by Christians during the Middle Ages was a horror. Millions of people killed by atheist Soviets was worse by at least an order of magnitude.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (4, Interesting)

Artifakt (700173) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554248)

The Crusades resulted in the deaths of roughly ninety to one-hundred-eighty thousand non-combatants (nominal civilians, over a multi-century period. This was the 28th most severe invasion of the fertile crescent after all, falling behind only such other invasions as the Califate, The Hittite expansion, Assyria, Alexander the great, and 24 other wars with higher death tolls.
If you include crusades not directed at the holy land, such as the Fourth Crusade versus Constantinople, the Albigensian Crusade versus the Cathars and the Northern Crusades, a Million is not an unreasonable death toll. That's both ways of course, not just the 'Christian side' body-counts, and includes wars where both sides claimed to be Christian.

The witch burnings were really post middle ages (about 1480 to 1700) spanning the Reformation and the Thirty Years' War, resulting in a problem of figuring out which executions were witch related and which were of Cathars, political and nationalist based population obliterations and so on. Best estimates for a death toll definitely cross the line into the 100,000-110,000 range. but still taking over 200 years total to do so, and falling behind not just the rest of the thirty years war, but the hundred years war, maybe the English civil war, the Armenian atrocities, and a couple of mid 20th century events I won't bother to mention in the same areas. It's even possible that what Vlad personally did to combat the Muslim invaders of Transylvania resulted in more civilian deaths than the witch trials.

The best estimates for the Spanish Inquisition come from the church's own records, and thousands of people who wouldn't convert is quite accurate, in fact the best guess is around 32,000. I wouldn't mind seeing a game in this setting, but if it's a typical first person shooter, The Player will probably have to gibe that many personally to get a high score.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554400)

You're obviously not from the region.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_the_Soviet_Union [wikipedia.org]

While the STATE was considered Atheist, most of the country was religious, and even a lot of the state. However, it was considered a bad thing (rightly so), and so people kept quiet about it. If you talk to a vast majority of people around here and ask them what it was like, they'll tell you, people were religious, they just didn't jam it in peoples faces, else they could be killed.

The point you're trying to make, which is unjustified, is that Atheist killed people because of their religion. While these people were Atheist and did kill people because of their religion, the amount of THESE deaths was relatively small, especially compared to the inquisition. Stalin's Russia killed many people, but not for their religion, this was due to the tyranny of the state.

So, here's an idea churchy, next time you think you're really smart and recite what some priest told you, perhaps you should do some research first, before repeating it as fact, to see if the guy who makes shit up (The priest), is still making shit up.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554442)

Whenever a religious extremist murders someone, it's always blamed on religion. Of course, most of the murder in the name of religion in the world today is done to also further political goals. It's due to tyranny and not due purely to religion.

Likewise, religion posed a threat to tyrants like Stalin because the religious ideas were conflicting with the political policies and goals of said tyrants. Religious ideas respecting the dignity of human life, rejecting oppression, and supporting freedom and free will were in conflict with those states. Religion was a threat to the state because it told people they deserved better than what they were getting from their government.

Unfortunately your post is a perfect example of the bigotry against religion when you say that religion was viewed as a bad thing and then insert your opinion that it rightly viewed as a bad thing.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1)

WrongMonkey (1027334) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554414)

That's one way of looking at it. Another way is that the total population of the world changed by at least a factor of 10 between the Crusades the the Soviet Union, so expressed as a percentage, they're about equal.

Yet another way of the looking at it is that both are equally bad, but atheists are just more efficient.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (0, Flamebait)

MadMartigan2001 (766552) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554234)

Agreed. It is always amazing how "the religious" lay claim to promote and police "morality" when in fact they themselves are the least moral among us and only show compassion for "fear of gods retribution" if they do not. sickening! the good news is, contrary to what the "majority" say, they are not the majority and the sane world of people, who believe in observable, testable reality are growing in numbers every day. In a few hundred years, we can only pray that the "religion" will only be a small bloody chapter in the history of humanity. Yes, it will be replaced by something else, but hopefully we'll have religious fanatics that believe in fairy tales that at least have a chance of making sense. Unlike the current crop of religions that are all so unbelievably idiotic that it's hard to believe these people can even talk and chew gum at the same time, much less make rational observations of reality.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554274)

Calling 6,400,000,000 people ignorant and lacking in morals, that is pretty awesome dude. I thought only God had the power to judge in such a way. What else do you know?

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554306)

contrary to what the "majority" say, they are not the majority

However, what you say is contrary to these "facts and religions" you as this "high and mighty atheist" claim to "adhere" to. Just about every site I've seen estimates the number of Christians at about 2.1 billion, Islam at 1.5 billion and only about 1.1 billion as non-religious. Just right there you can see how the facts contradict with your statements. How does this make you any better of a person than a religious hypocrite?

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554312)

That should say "facts and reasons" not religions.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (1)

matria (157464) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554334)

In a few hundred years, we can only pray that the "religion" will only be a small bloody chapter in the history of humanity.

And to whom (or what) will we be praying?

In any case, since humanity has been slaughtering one another over religion (or at least using religion as the excuse) throughout its entire history, it will hardly ever be a "small" chapter. The body count of the Muslim sectarian violence going on right now with no end in sight has already approached if not exceeded that of most of history's religiously-inspired wars.

Re:a game that tells the truth about religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554380)

troll

Religion isn't needed in video games (4, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554086)

I don't really see how religion is needed in video games. Plenty of games have used religious influences heavily. Fantasy games often use elements of Norse, Egyptian, Greek/Roman, and Christianity/Judaism in their games and that hasn't been a problem. People don't like being fed propaganda from any religious group so games based on any particular religion usually will fail (the fact that they are usually done by second-rate developers and are low budget doesn't help them either). But more than anything else, there is no need. Look at some games, either A) They are done in a fantasy setting and therefore having a real-world religion as a major theme is simply unrealistic or boring B) The focus is action rather than storyline development, most gamers don't care if the Spy from Team Fortress 2 was an agnostic, Buddhist or a scientologist. C) Religion would take away key parts of character development, for example Fallout 3, choosing a religion would effectively either make your character a hypocrite, unrealistic or would make decision making too simple.

In the end, I don't think there is a need for religion in video games. While it will always and has always been referenced, theres just no good reason to put it in.

Re:Religion isn't needed in video games (1)

macraig (621737) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554178)

Actually, it is. Haven't you heard? It's the opiate of the masses.

Re:Religion isn't needed in video games (-1, Troll)

something_wicked_thi (918168) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554222)

Religion shouldn't be in video games not only because it's not needed, but because it's harmful. Religion is bad for you and those around you. The less of it in our children's education (except that taught as mythology), the better. We already have enough ignorance in the world without spreading it in video games.

Re:Religion isn't needed in video games (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554250)

We already have enough ignorance in the world without spreading it in video games.

QED

Re:Religion isn't needed in video games (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554260)

Because we all know that the total lack of religion isn't harmful at all either...

Re:Religion isn't needed in video games (1)

hierofalcon (1233282) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554404)

Mythology examines a religion (although usually just Greek or sometimes Roman of the many forms it has taken over the years). Mythology just isn't followed much anymore and never caught on particularly in the United States. It's also OK to explore Islam and Hinduism and Native American beliefs in school to name a few. It's even OK to study the persecution of the Mormons (at least out here in the West and I should say LDS, I suppose, so as not to offend them). The only time the school board or parents or atheists or agnostics get offended is when Christianity is discussed yet issues involving Christianity have been part of history just as much as these other religions and are likely to remain so for the foreseeable future.

As a Christian, I don't mind if cultures and world religions are studied in school. If it will help our kids understand and perhaps deal better with their generation of peers in other parts of the world, that's OK. It only offends most Christians that one particular religion (Christianity) is singled out as something that cannot be discussed, even though it is likely to have a greater influence on people in the United States (whether you agree with it or not) than any of the others that are required in elementary school and junior high studies - perhaps more than all of them combined. If you don't want Christianity taught, then don't give special exemptions to the rest of the world's religions in the name of cultural studies. There are a great many kids out there who are just as unaware of the culture of Christianity. As I mentioned, they're more likely to run across Christians in America than a Native American (although I do work with some Native Americans myself). Shouldn't they be familiar with what makes Christians tick?

Christianity should not be in video games however. There's that whole be separate from the world thing that Christ tried to teach and I really don't think He would want some game developer's idea of Christianity to be some aside in a mass produced game filled with mahem and destruction. It is truly unlikely to bear any semblance to His church. Note that I was careful to delineate His church and not name a particular organization or denomination. I really don't think He's particularly happy with how far down His church has fallen since He started it - our fault and not His. If the power of the early church was present in every city where a Christian church was founded, you'd probably feel a bit differently than you do.

That isn't to say that religion isn't present in games. There are many that have been mentioned here that have direct religious overtones. Just don't confuse them with Christianity even if they use that label.

Could Christianity be successfully incorporated in a video game? Absolutely. I seem to remember Indiana Jones had a very popular franchise going where several movies had direct Christian/Jewish themes. If you didn't know the Christian or Jewish culture, you ended up getting killed for your lack of cultural diversity.

Re:Religion isn't needed in video games (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554328)

Scientology is not a religion and if a character I can play in a video game were one, I wouldn't buy it. Screw them.

Religion (5, Insightful)

Renraku (518261) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554092)

Religion does exist in video games. They aren't usually the same religions as we have meatside, however. I think that's what people are complaining about. The problem is if you let, say, World of Warcraft priests worship the Christian god, then people will automatically boycott when it doesn't follow a particular sect's beliefs. In fact, they'd have no combat skills at all if they followed the word of the Bible.

Instead, religions are made up, relatively shallow, and may be based on the history that took place in the game. Sounds a lot like real religions, doesn't it?

Re:Religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554258)

You would need 2 skill trees for christians: new testament would be the panzy healers w/ tissue paper for armor. But the old testament tree would be full of badass powers followed by animal sacrifice.

Blame the game (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554094)

Great. Now when people realize how corrupt religion is, they'll blame the video games for causing it.

I'm Andrew Ryan and I'm here to ask you a question (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554098)

Is a man not entitled to the sweat of his brow? No, says the man in Washington. It belongs to the poor. No, says the man in the Vatican. It belongs to God. No, says the man in Moscow. It belongs to everyone. I rejected those answers. Instead, I chose something different. I chose the impossible. I chose... Rapture. A city where the artist would not fear the censor. Where the scientist would not be bound by petty morality. Where the great would not be constrained by the small. And with the sweat of your brow, Rapture can become your city as well.

Parent is not offtopic; Religion in Bioshock & (1)

svtdragon (917476) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554288)

Parent is not offtopic. Bioshock addresses religion in exactly the manner that the quote indicates--people, for instance, create a smuggling ring around religious artifacts from the surface. It's stated that Rapture was created to get away from its influence. This is clearly not the light that the evangelists are looking to see it in, but it's there and there's no denying that.

Assassin's Creed also involves religious elements, to the point where the devs felt a disclaimer was necessary at the beginning. The first deals with assassinations during the crusades, and the second has *SPOILER*





you assassinating the fucking pope.





*/SPOILER* So, I'd argue that religion as a plot element is reasonably common in modern games, and that the production quality of those two games/series alone is enough to offset the summary's assertion. And for that matter, I've not heard of many boycotts of the above titles. They're titles that sold quite well, so if there had been such boycotts, they can't have had much effect.

Now, if they want to talk about games that portray religion in a positive light, that's a different story.

Is Michael Thompson aware of the FF series? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554104)

While I could not find an exact sales figure for the United States alone, Final Fantasy X sold 6.6 million copies worldwide. Final Fantasy X-2 managed ~3 million worldwide, ~1 million in North America.

PARAPHRASED SPOILERS OF FINAL FANTASY X FOLLOW

In the first game, you kill what the majority of their world conceives of as a (monotheistic) deity, as it was enjoying a parasitic relationship with humanity. It still sold just fine.

Modern Warfare: The Return of Christ (5, Funny)

copponex (13876) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554112)

Christ is risen, and boy, is He pissed.

After receiving the authority to smite the tribes of Islam, Christ joins the eighty deuces and gets his revenge on vegetarians, homosexuals, eaters of shellfish, and of course, unbelievers and blasphemers. Armed with a robe and the wrath of Yahweh, step into the sandals of He Who Is Righteous as he transforms from the Prince of Peace to the Prince of Blowing Motherfuckers to Pieces. Use conventional weapons to kill the wicked or send plague upon plague to the unfortunate souls dumb enough to defy you. Raise past holy warriors from the dead to join your army of brutal goodness, and get bonus points for killing Arab leaders and sending them to Hell.

Feel the rage of the righteous! Coming Spring 2010...

Re:Modern Warfare: The Return of Christ (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554238)

So, you mean Blackwater: The Game isn't vaporware?

Ahh see they are being disingenuous (4, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554114)

They say they are interested in religion in games. Well, in fact there IS religion in quite a few games. In some cases a religious mythology forms the basis for the game's world, in other cases there are various religious characters who influence things and so on. That's not what they want. They want a game that evangelizes their religion. They want one that shoves it in your face, that tries to show it as The One True Way(tm).

Well, games like that are basically always going to suck. Evangelism isn't fun. What's more, it turns off most people so major developers won't do it. When you have an inherently shitty premise and combine that with a shitty developer you are going to get a total crap fest.

In terms of mainstream games, religion will continue to be a role in them as it always has been. Often it'll be fictional religions, since they are often set in fictional worlds. However you'll continue to see religious characters of one sort or another in games where such a thing is useful to the story. However you aren't going to see games designed around pushing a religion. Those aren't fun, and they won't sell well, so major publishers aren't going to fund them.

Re:Ahh see they are being disingenuous (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554124)

I'd think an RPG built around finding and exploiting human weaknesses to turn people, groups, and cities to the devil could make for a good game. Of course, it's probably not the religious message these folks are aiming for :)

Re:Ahh see they are being disingenuous (1)

bmgoau (801508) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554220)

While not quite as sinister as your comment implies, Black and White is an excellent example of this and the topic in general.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_&_White_(video_game) [wikipedia.org]

I agree with the parent, evangelism isn't fun in games unless it underpins a characters background or motivations. Diablo 1 and 2 are also good examples of religious mythology used well in games:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diablo_(video_game) [wikipedia.org]

Assasins Creed 1 and 2 are also good examples. I believe the non-deity of Jesus is touched very lightly at one point with a reference to Arthur C. Clarke's: "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."

These games show that religion's effect on our society can be used to produce a compelling narrative, often with a focus on its evil side. What I personally would hate is to be fed self righteous propaganda. Let us hope we never see "The Passion of Christ: The Game - only on PS3" let alone a 3D rendering of Mohammad (actually, i'd like to see a developer have the balls to go there).

Re:Ahh see they are being disingenuous (2, Insightful)

nawcom (941663) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554280)

I've read some reviews of Left Behind - Eternal Forces [wikipedia.org] from Christians themselves, and even they felt that evangelizing Jesus and the general theme of the game sort of ruined the fun of it.

TF2 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554122)

When I play Team Fortress 2, I play Demoman standing in the midst of stickies and detonate them when someone approaches me then micspam "ALLAH AKBAR"

Too Much Time On Their Hands (1, Interesting)

Evil Shabazz (937088) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554126)

These groups and these complaints are a perfect example of people who don't understand the idea of freedom. They are the people who want everyone to live like they live and believe what they believe. They don't get that people are free to make and sell whatever games they want, and that people are free to choose which games they buy and which they don't. If people wanted more religious video games, companies would recognize this demand and create more religious video games. There are no regulations encouraging or prohibiting any of this. If there are few religious video games, realize that the demand must just not be there for it.

Re:Too Much Time On Their Hands (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554174)

Since they have too much time on their hands (per your subject), you'd think they'd fit right in here on Slashdot.

Game proposal: Numbers 31 FPS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554140)

"In this game, you play as Moses as he fights the Midianites. Weapons are the usual for the period. You get points for killing adult males, adult females, and male children. But you lose points if you kill virgin girls, obviously."

Yeah, I could see that...

Re: article tag (2, Insightful)

dexmachina (1341273) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554146)

Simple solution: If you do not want- do not buy. Developers aren't idiots. Religious video games will be industry standard when hell freezes over. That's sort of the main point of the article. At the same time, there's certainly a niche market for them. I don't enjoy racing games, that doesn't mean I'm opposed to their existence. Why should this be any different? Seriously, in cases like this the whole, "leave religion out of it," line is just retarded. On that note, Happy Newton's Birthday everyone.

Bullshit (2, Insightful)

alvinrod (889928) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554150)

First of all, not everyone is being completely adverse to religion. The marketing team behind Dante's Inferno actually hired a group of people to pretend to be Christians protesting the game. Even if such a thing would be considered poor taste, it's not going to affect game sales at all. The same people who would actually protest or boycott a game over religion would never buy your game anyway. Hell, I actually heard more about the game because some religious people were offended by the fake protest and made enough noise that it was picked up by a few news outlets. Free advertising right there.

The other way to look at it is that games are trying to be a form of art. If they're not willing to tackle religion, they're just throwing away their legitimacy. Whether you're religious or not, I think you would agree that religion plays a major role in the world today and as such is an interesting topic to explore from a narrative standpoint. It's not even necessary to single out a religion by name, but exploring ideas such as polytheism, religious crusades, or corruption of religious institutions can add something interesting to a game. In fact, I think that an exploration of some philosophy is something that is sadly lacking from so many games today. If someone were to make a game exploring these themes I would be tempted to buy it, even if the gameplay weren't as good as another title in the genre.

Re:Bullshit (2, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554202)

but exploring ideas such as polytheism, religious crusades, or corruption of religious institutions can add something interesting to a game.

You mean like what Tales of Symphonia did? If you haven't played the game I strongly recommend that you do as it basically covers corruption in religion, the morality of war, etc. All while being quite possibly the best RPG for the GameCube (not that there was much competition). (look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tales_of_Symphonia#Story [wikipedia.org] if you want an overview of the plot).

SimChurch (5, Interesting)

Animats (122034) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554154)

If religion in games was done right, it would make kids too cynical. Imagine this game:

"SimChurch - start your own religion, gain adherents, build a church, advertise, and grow. You can tweak your theology - too loose, and your people lose interest; too strict, and your people backslide. You can ask your followers for financial support, but ask too hard and they'll drop out. You can train fanatics to help you expand, but they may turn against you."

"In multiplayer mode, you can try to convert people from other religions to yours. Become strong enough in an area, and you can convert your country to a theocracy. Then you can have wars with other theocracies."

"If your theology calls for miracles, they might just happen. But they won't always help you. You can also fake miracles, once you have enough assets, and gain adherents that way."

This would teach kids way too much about how religion really works.

Re:SimChurch (1)

Trebawa (1461025) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554196)

That would actually be pretty fun.

Re:SimChurch (1)

Sparx139 (1460489) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554218)

I'd buy it. Although, I'm trying to imagine how you would turn this game into the living hell that regular Sims under my control are exposed to. Civil war, anyone?
I love metagaming

Re:SimChurch (4, Informative)

ShakaUVM (157947) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554264)

>>This would teach kids way too much about how religion really works.

Sure you don't want to call it Church Tycoon?

But honestly, having worked with/on church councils, while you see a lot of the politics you see in, well, all social organizations, churches are actually filled with good people who are trying to make a difference in society. Perhaps your game could actually encompass some of that, instead of just focusing on monetary issues.

Re:SimChurch (4, Insightful)

hackel (10452) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554402)

This is probably the most brilliant "Sim" game I've heard of since SimCity! I would buy this in a second, it is really a brilliant idea! And it would be GREAT education for kids!

Re:SimChurch (1)

philipgar (595691) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554422)

obviously, you haven't played Civ 4... not to the same extreme, but much of the same stuff. They gave a very loose high level view of religion.

Personally, my views on religion are nowhere near as cynical. There are those in it for the money/power/glory, but I think there are other leaders who truly believe what they preach, and have reasons for believing it. Of course, the more they ask of their congregations, the lessI tend to believe that their motives are "pure".

Phil

Re:SimChurch (1)

Erythros (140001) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554438)

You can easily get Zynga Games to convert Mafia Wars into SimChurch!!!

1) Do deeds
2) Invest in expensive buildings
3) Collect money, tax free of course
4) Grow mafia, erm followers
5) Profit

Re:SimChurch (1)

Erythros (140001) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554502)

Lest we forget....

6) Start wars with other religions.

Darwinia (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554160)

Great game with clear message: there is no god.

Dodgy Production Values? (1)

TiMac (621390) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554162)

...you mean like http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bible_Adventures [wikipedia.org] ?

One can only imagine the modern remake of that game-play....they could always use the Quake engine for 3D awesomeness...I'd love to see the rail gun used in Biblical fights.

Re:Dodgy Production Values? (1)

Sparx139 (1460489) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554228)

Wouldn't Jack Thompson have a dilemma then?

Re:Dodgy Production Values? (1)

aevan (903814) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554456)

If the wiki entry for Eternal Forces [wikipedia.org] is correct, no he wouldn't. He might be an imbecile, but apparently is a consistent one.

Let's be honest. (1, Insightful)

flajann (658201) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554204)

Let's be flat honest here.

Are we talking about any religion, or just Christianity in video games?

Christians will stop at nothing to ram their silly messages down our throats anyway they can. If we are talking Christian Propaganda being rammed down the throats of our kids in video games, then I am flatly against that.

If Christians want to write their own video games for themselves, more power to them. I think the mainstream does wisely to avoid stuffing Christian rhetoric in their productions. It will turn off many non-Christians and non-religious people. Why do it?

If you want your kids exposed to Christian Mythology, take them to church. Write your own video games, and clearly mark them as containing Christian Propaganda. And leave the rest of us alone.

Re:Let's be honest. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554420)

Funny how many rabid non believers attack Christianity but say nothing about the rampant Satanism in many games.

Why? Many of the non believers are Satanists (even if they never profess it) and have an agenda.

Or, they're just bitter trolls looking for anything Christian or Godly in the world and attempt to remove it to satisfy their own deprived and limited scope of satisfaction.

Myopia (1)

coffeethulhu (1707690) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554206)

Assassin's Creed 1 and 2
Dragon Age on MANY counts
God of War 1-3
Too Human
Any roleplaying game with the presence of a priest/cleric/etc class
XENOGEARS!!!

This is just a miniscule sample of what's out there. There is plenty of presence of religion in video games, real and fictional, though even fictional religions are generally rooted in the belief structures of actual ones. As Sycraft-fu said, they want religion to be shoved in your face, but realistically, religion is belief. There are tons of them out there and everyone has their own take. Putting religious doctrine as a centerpiece of a game would do nothing but alienate the audience.

At the same time, the group that is complaining of the irreverence or lack of "faith" in games is assuming that not only are they right, but that their own religion is pristine, which is not true of anyone. There is everything from modern court cases over abuse, embezzling and the like,to jihad, the crusades, forceful "conversion" blood feuds between rival INTERPRETATIONS of the same beliefs, crucifixion, slavery, support of genocide....the list goes on. Games are about entertainment. The good ones don't exist to try to pigeonhole the player into thinking a certain way, and while I have nothing against religion in general, religious propaganda aims to do just that, and that isn't something that the general population will tolerate in it's escapism. A good religious themed game is most likely going to borrow from the negative connotations of a religion, not the so-called positive, and is that really what those making this outcry want? Doubtful.

best religion in a video game (1, Funny)

MrKaos (858439) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554208)

I think that Scientology would a pretty good video game. Scored in thetans you would lambast your opponents into submission so they were 'stuck in an incident' and use a variety of pyscological techniques to intimidate, cajole and threaten anyone who get's in your way.

Contact with any southpark characters or hearing music from Tool kills your character instantly with sardonic irony or an influx of conscious awareness. You can use Tom Cruise missiles and seeing a movie with John Travolta increases your health (If you really have to you can sing 'the one that I want' in the street for a slow recharge). Contact with anonymous anonymouses of anonymousland slows you down.

Once acquired, your trusty DC3 is upgraded until it is a *real* spaceship so you can move onto the ultimate of ultimate boss fights with the badest of badguys - only trouble is you have to pay real money to find out the bosses name or you find yourself dropped into a volcano and have to start again - penniless. You fail every level at least once. The game, called 'Fair Game', starts with the phrase 'This is an e-meter...'.

Re:best religion in a video game (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554326)

I think that Scientology would a pretty good video game. Scored in thetans you would lambast your opponents into submission so they were 'stuck in an incident' and use a variety of pyscological techniques to intimidate, cajole and threaten anyone who get's in your way.

I will only play if you get to buy an R2-45 audit kit. [wikipedia.org] It could be like the chaingun in Wolf3d or the BFG from Doom. Exteriorize Thetans right and left!

Dragon Quest (1)

Vyse of Arcadia (1220278) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554230)

I've always liked the way Dragon Quest handles religion. You take a cross, bend it into a trident, make god into a goddess, and leave everything else vaguely Catholic. That way you have a nicely fleshed-out religion and no one gets uppity or pissed.

There's lots of religion in games (1)

digitalhermit (113459) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554254)

As far back as I can remember, religion and gaming go hand in hand. For example, if you prayed in Nethack, you could be gifted with potions of healing. Or if you sacrificed a fresh kill at an altar, you may gain favor with your god. But don't sacrifice your puppy because someone may get upset.

In Fallout 2 I learned that Hubologists are a great source of grenades. They keep to themselves except when they're out warring with the New Reno drug lords. Oh, and they have some strange spokespeople with shiny teeth.

In Elder Scrolls 4, I learned about the Mythic Dawn and the cults of Dagon. You can count on them to have wine. Or at least potions of magicka.

So I wouldn't say it's a fringe thing.

People play video games to escape the spectrum (1)

TheRealRainFall (1464687) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554268)

, the very limited spectrum, that religion forces them to live in real life. We are supposed to be role playing something we can not be. We all could and act honestly if we tried too. What fun is that to do in a video game. We want to do something we are not capable of.

Thou shalt not kill... already done (2, Insightful)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554270)

"I wanted to create a game that had both an entertaining adventure but also hold true to the commandment of 'Thou Shalt Not Kill.'"

Done: I am unaware of any game in which you actually kill people. Plenty of games in which your fictional character kills other fictional characters, but they're videogames, not real life.

It's odd to me that religious types sometimes seem to put more emphasis on morality in fiction than they do in real life. It's not real. Why is this a thing to them? No one has ever demonstrated that violence in videogames or movies actually leads to desensitization for real-life violence, so that's not a valid reason. There's plenty of real-world violence going on, that should be higher priority.

Virtual violence is repugnant to them is what I think it comes down to. That's fine, they should not play games with violence. I think this guy is basically doing the right thing, he's making his own game to fit his tastes, which is great. There aren't enough games like that. I still have to object to the mindset he seems to have: that virtual, in-game violence is somehow morally wrong.

And most in-game violence to me seems pretty justified. Most involve shooting bad guys or bad aliens. GTA allows you to kill innocent bystanders, sure, but so far that's always been a player using free will to do so. The main story does involve murder, but nine times out of ten it's justified. Not great morality there, but pretty good considering it's not real.

Some games actually suceed in making you feel guilty. Fallout 3 had oodles of opportunities to do evil, and plenty of times I ended up feeling pretty guilty.

Having played some of those wisdom tree games, I very much doubt people who are out to make games as a vehicle to promote their own morality have NEARLY the skill it would take to make a game in which a player felt guilty for committing virtual sins, but that is a possibility.

"It was important to do so, and it is not easy. You can defend yourself by stunning Enforcers, or thugs for a very brief time. The goal is the mission, and to avoid direct contact with the enemy as much as possible."

That sounds like a watered down version of mirror's edge, a FPS/FPA* which combines parkour with bad guys with guns. You can stun an enemy to take his gun, then use it on other bad guys for a few shots, but the game really encourages you at most parts to flee and stun rather than get into a shootout. Not for morality reasons though, it's just easier that way.

*I don't want to get into a semantic argument over marketing terms here, you know what I'm talking about.

Ultima IV Quest of the Avatar (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554278)

Sure, it wasn't "Religion" based, but it was philosophically based, and promoted good values. Give me some more positive games like that where there are little sub-quests where you can make the lives of the people in the game-world better. Heck, I was just playing Ultima7 again for the bazillionth time, and just fixed Polly and Thurston up for the first time. No lasting game value, doesn't help any quest, give moeny, etc. but it's a great warm fuzzy. Then I stole Morphin's illegal drugs, tried to blackmail him with his ledger, then slaughtered Garritt and his parents with caltrops for being pricks. Next: Lord British.

pfft (0, Troll)

shentino (1139071) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554292)

Video games satisfy the lusts of the flesh.

By definition that conflicts with the goals of religion.

Religious Game Idea... (1)

bjwest (14070) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554316)

Want a good FPS or MMORPG? Look to the Crusades.

games or religion? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554320)

Wow, I read the lead as:

Part of the problem is that religion is a corrupting influence for the youth of the world.

Religion in video games? (0, Troll)

Swampash (1131503) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554332)

I think there's a need for religious content in video games like I think there's a need for schizophrenic content in video games, and bipolar content in video games, and Alzheimers-based content in video games. Why pander to just one form of mental illness?

Total war games (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554336)

The total war games have delt with religion since the beginning. You not only have to conqer the military, you have to enforce your ideologies on the people or they will rebel.

Educate people too much (build too many schools) and they rebel, slap an oppressive religion on them and spread your priests around and they are good little subjects.

Of course in the holy war campaigns you are often forced to follow the will of the pope or else you are excomunicated and the other countries will attack you.

Or howsabout.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30554384)

Boycotts from legions of the unfaithful.. .. well, the unfaithful are more like covert ops in terms of numbers, really.

Simple: Target Market (1, Insightful)

hackel (10452) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554386)

Gamers--the people who really fuel the gaming industry (as opposed to the casual gamer) are a very unique market segment. They are, for the most part, people who actually *think*. A religious game targeted at this group would make no sense, as many of the responses to this story have demonstrated. Not only would I say the majority of the "gamer" market is probably atheist, but even the ones who do believe in something are much more likely to be independent in their thinking and what they believe, and not likely to take their religion from a third party source such as a video game.

Now, certainly some religious mythology could be used to make some good games. And this is the sad part, I find. Game manufacturers are too afraid of offending the right-wing religious nutjobs who are out there monitoring everything. Even though these people in no way represent their market, they end up controlling so much and can even have a negative impact on sales. (Of course, as with GTA, it can also have the opposite effect.) I would like to see a Jesus vs .Mohammed-style deathmatch game. Of course then the Muslims would totally freak out for allowing their precious messenger to appear in a game.

I could also easily see a MMORPG set in the middle ages with a heavy religious theme, which would be great--so long as it's accurate. Using religion to control your subjects just as it was used in real life.

It's also too bad that it would be illegal to insert religion into "America's Army," because those people would be the perfect audience to receive it!

Populous (1)

Belial6 (794905) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554396)

After populous, no more religion is needed in video games.

Games corrupt youth? (2, Informative)

bocin (886008) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554486)

"Part of the problem is that the game industry is often touted as being a corrupting influence for the youth of the world." This is a statement that has no basis in fact. Kids used to play cowboys and indians and other games that involved pretend gunfights and pretend killing. Since the memory of man goeth not to the contrary children have had games that involved make believe violence. I believe it is clear who is to blame for the lack of disipline that todays youth displays: The social workers who strike fear into parents and the psychiatrists with their diagnosis of "attention deficit disorder". When a child has only self direction to steer them because their parents are to afraid to teach them the word NO then you get a child who is confused, anxious even violent. Of course this is nothing a good dose of ritlan or some such drug can't fix right up. Please note that a majority of the proponents of the theory that video games cause violence in youth are the social workers and the psychiatrists. Look at the time line. When these two groups became the last word in child rearing is when most of the problems in young people (violence in particular) started. These people are educated and totally aware of what they have wrought in the lives of our children. Teaching self disipline to children can and will improve their quality of life. Here's a link to a TED video that more than proves this point: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M0yhHKWUa0g&feature=player_embedded [youtube.com] Peace..... Oh bye the way religion has nothing to sell that I care to buy....

Grandia II (1)

Stormwatch (703920) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554490)

They should have mentioned Grandia II, it has the best religious-themed plot ever. If you can play it, don't read the summary ahead; it suffices to say that it can be serious mindfuck to religious people, especially catholics.

(( IN THE BEGINNING ))
Many ages ago, the Battle of Good and Evil took place: Valmar (the devil) was destroyed by Granas (god), and the pieces of his foul body fell to earth, leaving on it massive scars that last to this day.

(( LIGHT SPOILERS HERE ))
Ryudo, a geohound (mercenary), is hired by a local church of Granas to take a group of Songstresses (nuns) to an ancient tower, where a part of Valmar lies. They are to perform a sealing ritual, so Valmar will never be revived. But something goes tragically wrong, and all the Songstresses are killed except one, Elena, who is possessed by the Wings of Valmar. He is again hired to take her to St. Heim (Vatican), where they are to meet the Pope (can't get more obvious), who could possibly help rid her of that evil taint.

(( HEAVY SPOILERS NOW ))
Early on their journey, Ryudo runs into a mysterious and immensely powerful sorceress, Millennia -- who, he soon finds, is Elena transformed by the Wings of Valmar. Other characters join them: a beast man who wants revenge on Ryudo's long-lost evil brother, a young boy who is in fact the prince of a kingdom that once worshipped Valmar, and an ancient droid girl who has yet to learn to have any feelings.

(( MASSIVE SPOILERS INCOMING ))
On their way, they attempt to cleanse other places that have been tainted by the parts of Valmar. But they eventually find that, while they thought they were cleansing the parts, they were actually releasing them, allowing Valmar to be resurrected. And whereas Valmar was indeed turned into pieces, Granas was actually destroyed. Yes, you read it right, god is dead -- and the Pope not only knew it, he planned to use the rebirth of Valmar to bring the end of the world. So, ultimately, they have to kill the pope-turned-reincarnation-of-the-devil.

(( ULTIMATE SPOILERS ))
And it ends in a ménage à trois!

Meh? (1)

Misao-Chan (181020) | more than 4 years ago | (#30554498)

The problem isn't religion in video games, series like Final Fantasy has already addressed religious themes in their games on a regular basis.

"Christian Game Developers Foundation put out a video encouraging developers to create wholesome titles for kids", statements like that which cause issues when certain religious sects place act as the moral blanket for everyone christian or atheist, fundamentalist or moderate, they are imposing an agenda on people that do not necessarily agree with their views.

That being said, there is always the option not to purchase it... Don't like it, don't buy it. As long as there is still a choice for the public, then people can make whatever games they want. As soon as someone starts to moves stamp out that choice, resistance should be brutal and swift to maintain freedom of expression.

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