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Christian Game Developers Conference Plans Gathering

simoniker posted more than 9 years ago | from the dogma dept.

Games 237

Thanks to GamerFeed for its story noting the Christian Game Developers Conference has announced its third annual gathering, to be held in Portland, Oregon on July 30th-31st. The official CGDC site has more information on the expo, which "officially expands to include card, board and paper game developers alongside interactive electronic entertainment." There's also word from conference organizer Tim Emmerich of GraceWorks Interactive: "We... plan to examine the variety of games currently on the market and successes in other media such as 'The Passion of The Christ' and the 'Left Behind' series, which proved that Bible-based products can do well in the market if they are well made."

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237 comments

Bring on the bigots! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953387)

Bring on the bigots who belong to the Atheist faith, and let the bashing begin!

Re:Bring on the bigots! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953438)

How is atheism a faith? It is by definition a lack of faith. It takes no leap of faith to deny a bunch of mumbo jumbo about supreme beings and all that trash.

Atheism is about refusing to believe all the rediculous beliefs spouted by the religious types.

Atheism a faith like any other (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953484)

"How is atheism a faith? It is by definition a lack of faith"

No, it is by definition a faith that there is no Deity. You are confusing it with agnosticism, which does lack faith.

"It takes no leap of faith to deny a bunch of mumbo jumbo about supreme beings and all that trash."

Yet it takes a leap of faith to believe that there is no God.

"Atheism is about refusing to believe all the rediculous beliefs spouted by the religious types"

Except for their own ridiculous belief. That puts the faith-based atheist like you in the same company as Falwell and Khomeini: "my religion is not faith, it is TRUE and SUPERIOR, and everyone else is idiots."

Re:Atheism a faith like any other (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953548)

What a pile of crap. Faith in a god(s) requires a suspension of logic and reason. There is absolutely no evidence to support a belief in god(s). That is why such a belief is faith. I'm not saying having such a faith is wrong. There is also no evidence to disprove the exisitence of god(s).

The key difference here is that it takes no faith not to believe in something. Not believing in something takes no effort at all.

Of course (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953584)

Of course. Very typical of the religious bigot. Everyone else's religion is a "pile of crap" except for your own. Your religion is the only one with logic and reason.

"The key difference here is that it takes no faith not to believe in something"

Yet you have it anyway.

You prove the point (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953709)

all you do is prove the point that those of your religion have a real arrogance and intolerance problem toward those who do not share your views. It's not just the Muslims and the Religious Right who have this problem.

Re:You prove the point (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953870)

What the fuck is your problem? Atheism is not a religion. Get your head out of your ass. No one said relgion was bad. It isn't my fault you want to believe in stupid fairy tales. You can do what you want, just don't try to shove it down my throat.

I am perfectly happy with all you idiots worshiping nonexisitant deities. It is your constitutionally protected right to do so (if you live in the US that is). That doesn't mean I have to think you are intellegent for doing so.

Re:Atheism a faith like any other (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954147)

Yours is the most logical post in the thread.

There is a distinct difference between a lack of faith and faith in a contradictory belief. It is the faith of many that there is one God. It is the faith of others that there are many gods. It is the faith of others still that there is no god. For an atheist to declare that "there is no god," while backed by no proof, requires faith in as much. Faith = belief.

Agnostics don't know what to believe, so they either don't think about it, or they think too much about it. While it is an open-minded standpoint, that is true, literal faithlessness.

I have heard it be said that an atheist is a closed-minded agnostic. That is not true. The distinctions between atheism and agnosticism must be understood in order to have any meaningful conversation on the issue.

But then again, this is Slashdot. Microsoft is equally evil for the faithful and the faithless.

Re:Atheism a faith like any other (2, Insightful)

StocDred (691816) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954186)

Yet it takes a leap of faith to believe that there is no God.

Does it require a leap of faith to believe that there is no flying purple people eater? Or the Tooth Fairy?

No, common sense and the sum real-life experiences of the entire world will tell you that neither exist. Same with "god", sorry to tell you.

This 'atheism is a faith too!' argument has cropped up lately as a pathetic meanns for christians to counter atheism. Doesn't work.

Not an argument. Just a fact (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954401)

"This 'atheism is a faith too!' argument has cropped up"

It is not so much argument as it is fact. Atheism is just another faith concerning deity. Nothing more, nothing less. Those who argue that it is the only true faith, the only logical one are as arrogant as the worst Christian or Muslim.

Re:Not an argument. Just a fact (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954578)

I suppose this would be on the order of the "facts" that religious folks cite in their holy scriptures? Atheism is not a faith, but an absence of faith that there is a god(s).

Mr. Webster says:

atheism
\A"the*ism\, n. [Cf. F. ath['e]isme. See Atheist.] 1. The disbelief or denial of the existence of a God, or supreme intelligent Being.

Belief takes faith.

Disbelief is a lack of faith.

Get over it. you've got the faith (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954636)

"Belief takes faith. Disbelief is a lack of faith."

If there is no evidence of what the disbelief concerns, then it is still a faith. Atheism is a faith like any other. Your quoted dictionary definition only bolsters that you are incorrect.

Re:Get over it. you've got the faith (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954715)

So do you have to have faith to say that I'm not a traveler from the future sent back in time to talk to you about religion? I would say not.

It would have to take faith to believe that, but it takes no faith not to believe it.

It can't be proven either way, so the only act of faith would be in believing the unproveable.

Re:Get over it. you've got the faith (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954758)

"So do you have to have faith to say that I'm not [obviously maee-up irrelevant example]"

Nice way to try to change the subject with invalid analogies that you are making up on the spot.

Re:Atheism a faith like any other (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954426)

Does it require a leap of faith to believe that there is no flying purple people eater? Or the Tooth Fairy?

No, common sense and the sum real-life experiences of the entire world will tell you that neither exist. Same with "god", sorry to tell you.


We know there is no tooth fairy because teeth under our pillows cease to be replaced with coins when our parents admit it was all a lie. That is to say, there is conclusive evidence that the tooth fairy does not exist.

However, you cannot assert that "common sense and the sum real-life experiences of the entire world" tell us that God does not exist. That's a subjective argument; you cannot claim to have conclusive evidence of anything when billions of people around the world, looking at the exact same evidence, draw the opposite conclusion.

The existence or otherwise of God is not a thing that can be proven by scientific evidence or logical argument. It's possible to prove that. And a lot of people round here would be rather grateful if people on both sides of the argument would just fucking well agree to differ and SHUT UP. Thank you.

Re:Atheism a faith like any other (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954504)

Another crap arguement.

You can not prove there is no tooth fairy. Mabye the tooth fairy didn't want to visit your house, because she knew that your parents didn't believe in her. There is no conclusive evidence that the tooth fairy doesn't exist, but I would think that most people would agree that there probably isn't a tooth fairy. If someone believed in the tooth fairy, they have faith that the tooth fairy exists. If someone doesn't believe in the tooth fairy it doesn't have anything to do with faith. They infact have put no faith in the belief that there is a tooth fairy.

The same goes for god(s).

Re:Atheism a faith like any other (1)

nacturation (646836) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954486)

"How is atheism a faith? It is by definition a lack of faith"

No, it is by definition a faith that there is no Deity. You are confusing it with agnosticism, which does lack faith.


The greek prefix "a-" means "non-", so an atheist is someone who is a non-theist. What is a theist [wikipedia.org]? One who has faith in God(s) and/or Goddess(es) who created the universe, etc. So an atheist or non-theist is one who doesn't fit into that category.

This is logically a contrapositive [wikipedia.org]. If A implies B then the contrapositive of that is not B implies not A. If would be false to say that not A implies not B. However, there are two meanings to atheist, the classical atheism which simply means "I don't share your beliefs" and the modern atheism which means "I believe in no God(s)/Goddess(es)". The modern atheism does require faith, as you've pointed out and doesn't exactly fit the definition of a non-theist. The classic atheism doesn't require faith as it simply means that "I don't hold those beliefs", and not "I hold beliefs opposite to yours".

The misunderstanding between atheist and agnostic is very widespread. However, read up on what a Theist believes vs. what a Gnostic believes and you'll find that there's a huge difference between the two, and saying that an agnostic is an atheist without faith would be similar to saying that a Gnostic is a Theist without faith.

Re:Atheism a faith like any other (1)

StocDred (691816) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954583)

Right on. If people want to play semantic games over the word 'faith', a discussion over the actual word origin of 'atheist' is much more valuable.

Oh, to keep on-topic... These games will blow.

Nothing semantic about it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954699)

Nothing semantic about it: those in the Atheist religion have a faith that there are no deities. Might as well say that you worship the god Athe, whose main characteristic (according to how the faith defines him) is that he does not exist. Bowing before the null God.

Atheism is a religion like any other.

Re:Bring on the bigots! (1)

superyooser (100462) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954261)

Theism and atheism both tout declarations of belief concerning something that is supernatural. A materialist scientific verdict cannot be given either way. Therefore, they are both faiths.

Theism is faith in presence; atheism is faith in absence.

Re:Bring on the bigots! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954676)

What are you talking about?

Your rediculous statment assumes there is such a thing as the supernatural, which is a religious notion.

Not beliving in the supernatural is not a leap of faith. It is a choice not to believe in something that can not be proven. Not believing in something that has not been proven is not faith, but rather a lack of faith.

The flip side of this is that Theism is a leap of faith to believe in something that can not be proven. That doesn't make it wrong, but it does make it a faith. In fact as far as I know, having this "faith" is one of the most important aspects of most religions. It is supposedly a virtue to have faith (I think it is silly, but then I'm biased).

Why is this such an issue to those who have faith? Wouldn't you want to put distance from the "unbelievers"? Why insist that we have faith too?

Your argument (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954730)

"Your rediculous statment assumes there is such a thing as the supernatural, which is a religious notion"

Your argument assumes that there is no such thing as a the supernatural, which is another religious assertion.

"Not beliving in the supernatural is not a leap of faith"

It becomes a leap of faith if you assert that that supernatural does not exist.

"It is a choice not to believe in something that can not be proven"

The non-existence of the supernatural is one of these things. Actually, it is as provable or unprovable as any religious assertion.

"It is supposedly a virtue to have faith (I think it is silly, but then I'm biased)."

You are biased because you are blinded by your own faith. You think those who do not have your religion are silly. Religious bigots of all kinds have this characteristic.

Re:Bring on the bigots! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954769)

Theism and atheism both tout declarations of belief concerning something that is supernatural. A materialist scientific verdict cannot be given either way. Therefore, they are both faiths. Theism is faith in presence; atheism is faith in absence.

Incorrect. If theism is "faith in presence" then atheism, or "non-theism" means "absence of (faith in presence)". Huge difference. You're confusing "I don't believe that" with "I believe the opposite of that".

That's right motherfucker. (-1, Flamebait)

Ayanami Rei (621112) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953487)

I couldn't give half of a rats ass about this. Why anyone would want to play a game that's centered around adherance to a religious faith is a mystery to me. Plus, I mean will Mormons play games made by Roman Catholics if they are aware of those elements? Too much stupid shit to think about there. They're not trying to make a game at all, they're trying to make a statement in what is a largely secular field.

It's like people who make "hentai" games. Rarely are they ever fun. You'd waste less time finding ripped screens on USENET.

I mean it's cool if the theme of your game is religious based. I mean, fuck, FFVII gets a lot of its story from Cabbalist mysticism.

But you won't see any bible-thumping programmer surpassing John Carmack any time soon.

Flamebait? (0, Flamebait)

Ayanami Rei (621112) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954162)

What, how many people here actually care about Christian games? I thought this was "news for NERDS", not the 7100 club.

Re:Flamebait? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954354)

What, how many people here actually care about Christian games? I thought this was "news for NERDS", not the 7100 club.

If you meant "christians AND nerds == 0", then I have some news for you - lots of nerds are Christians, and vice versa.

If you meant "Christian games are typically crap, and nerds, even Christian nerds, like good games", I suggest you go read some reviews of Christian games on SomethingAwful - crap games make for very funny reviews, and nerds like funny reviews.

Fine, fine. (1)

Ayanami Rei (621112) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954672)

a) I'm acutely aware of the religion following Slashdot readership. It's become more problematic of late when threads go down that path.

b) I'm suggesting more the latter. But also that I don't think it's a worthwhile topic of discussion unless you are simulataneously considering my argument that the "Christian Entertainment" industry hurts itself by isolating itself. I didn't see the foot (It's Funny, Laugh) icon, so...

c) You have to read all MY posts with tounge fimrly planted in cheek. Seriously. And read the whole thing, carefully.

d) Give me a fucking break.

I also think we have a double standard here. (1)

Ayanami Rei (621112) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954716)

1) I can say "M$ is dumb" and no one will mod me down flamebait.

2) I can't say "Christianity is dumb", I'll get modded into the floor.

Statements 1 and 2 are opinions. Statements 1 and 2 are opinions often held by nerdish people. So why the double standard? Does everyone assume that it's not okay to put down peoples beliefs that have nothing to do with technology?

In this case the fields intersect. I don't think I should be modded down for expressing my opinion, especially in this case.

And just cause I'm cussing. Fuck, I always cuss. It's because I'm tired of people who write: Holy S*** and FU in their posts. As if the slashdot regex matching police were going to come and get them.

Re:I also think we have a double standard here. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954766)

You could also say "niggers are fags," but that wouldn't go over too well either (except for maybe with the GNAA).

MOD UP, NOT FLAMEBAIT, READ GRANDPARENT (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954182)

You need to read the parent to this post... the subject line is a bit harsh but the post has a point.

Mormon Games (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953514)

How about Mormon Games in which you spend all your time running from angry Native Americans because, you, as a Mormon, believe that Indians were too dumb to have made their own burial mounds and Israelites did it instead?

Re:Mormon Games (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954209)

I'm convinced that Joseph Smith invented the Mormon religion just because he wanted to be able to fuck multiple women without getting killed by an angry religious mob that "momentarily" "forgot" Commandment #6.

licensing options (1)

oskillator (670034) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953389)

We... plan to examine the variety of games currently on the market and successes in other media such as 'The Passion of The Christ

I don't know about the rest of you, but I'd love to see a game based on the Passion of Christ property. Play as Christ or the Romans!

Christians? (0, Flamebait)

dasunt (249686) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953403)

Aren't they the people who crucify Santa Claus every Easter?

[ Its a joke, laugh. Or cry. Since it will probably be just as accurate as the rest of the comments in this thread. ]

Re:Christians? (1)

Monkay4Christ (773985) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953511)

We don't crucify Santa Claus every Easter. We Draw and Quarter the Easter Bunny every Thanksgiving get it right.

Re:Christians? (3, Funny)

WTFmonkey (652603) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953872)

So it's just another day in Heaven, and Jesus and Moses are sitting up in heaven, shooting the shit as usual. Out of nowhere, Jesus starts looking a little down, almost embarassed.

"Hey, Jee, what's wrong?" asks Moses, concerned.

"Well you see, it's just been so long since I 'did my thang' that I'm starting to wonder if I've still got what it takes to maintain my reputation as the Son of God."

Moses looks sympathetic. "Well, you know, Jee, there's only one way to solve this. Let's go find out!"

So Jesus and Moses cruise down to Earth, landing in the vicinity of the Red Sea.

Moses says, "Okay man, I'm older than you, I'll go first." So he bows his head for a moment, looks up, then suddenly spreads his arms. The Red Sea parts, and Moses holds it for a moment before letting it settle.

"Yeah, baby! Thousands of years, and I still got it! w00t!"
Jesus, looking encouraged, stands up and begins to walk on the surface of the water. He gets about ten yards out and sinks like a rock.

Well, Jesus doggy-paddles his way back to shore (not ever having a reason to learn to swim, y'understand), and he's spitting out saltwater, puilling seaweed out of his hair, and he says, "Wait, I'm only two thousand years old! What's going on here? What happened?"

And Moses answers, "My friend, I was afraid of this. The last time you tried that, you didn't have those two holes in the bottom of your feet!"

Does this mean... (2, Interesting)

Mr. Darl McBride (704524) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953421)

...a sequel to Super Noah's Ark 3D?

That was absolutely the best ever game to license the Wolfenstein engine. Fire apples at sheep to make them so hungry they sleep. Peace on the ark, but I'm not sure what this taught me about Jesus.

Re:Does this mean... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954152)

...a sequel to Super Noah's Ark 3D?

Oh, good god no. Did that game depict how one gets a pair of blue whales on board the ark? Or how the two koala bears survived the trip from Mt. Ararat back to Australia given that they eat only eucalyptus leaves?

Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953434)

Wouldn't a convention like that be happier in Austin or somewhere else in the Bible Belt? I'm a Portlander, and I hardly think the town is a hotbed of Christian values. Thank god for that - a big reason why I can see settling down and raising kids there one day.

Really, why Portland?

exactly! (1)

catphile (316499) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953623)

I was wondering the same thing. I'm fairly certain that Portland has a higher percentage of athiests (like 20%) than any other major American metropolitan area. That's why it's so peaceful and friendly here.

Re:exactly! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954415)

Ah yes, the Pacific Northwest.

White supremacist mecca of the United States of America.

Re:Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953993)

You're obviously not from austin. *grin*

For those paper games... (2, Funny)

Toxygen (738180) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953441)

They should base them on the AD&D system. Or maybe Magic: The Gathering.

Re:For those paper games... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953917)

How about Call of Chthulu?

Re:For those paper games... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954512)

No, no... tarot cards!

Aside from the religious implications... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953449)

...of the resurrection and the high production values of a fine filmmaker like Mel Gibson, is the Passion really any different then the violence-laden action crap that the right would be decrying if it were on a different subject or by Tarantino.

Re:Aside from the religious implications... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953474)

The big difference is that no one gives a flying fuck about Jesus. That is why the movie was crap.

Makes me think of... (4, Funny)

JasonMaggini (190142) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953485)

..."The Simpsons."
What was the game the Flanders' kids had? "Billy Graham's Bible Blasters" or something?

Re:Makes me think of... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953530)

...Just winged him... turned him into a Unitarian.

I know where to shelf the product (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953491)

In the sci-fi/fantasy section.

Well-made? (2, Interesting)

Chasuk (62477) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953505)

We... plan to examine the variety of games currently on the market and successes in other media such as 'The Passion of The Christ' and the 'Left Behind' series, which proved that Bible-based products can do well in the market if they are well made.

Well-made? Do Christians use different standards of judging craft than non-Christians? Asked another way, have you ever tried to read any of the Tim Lahaye books? If you seriously consider any of the books in the 'Left Behind' series to be well-made, that I can't wait to see some of the games that come out of this conference.

Re:Well-made? (5, Interesting)

Planesdragon (210349) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953547)

Do Christians use different standards of judging craft than non-Christians?

Nope. We use units sold or dollars grossed, just like everyone else.

And by THOSE measures, "Left Behind" is Shakesphere.

Re:Well-made? (2, Insightful)

Wylfing (144940) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953984)

I'm sky-high on karma and wearing my flameproof underwear today.

"Left Behind" is Shakesphere

Shakesphere? Sheesh. But poor spelling aside, how is this post Insightful or Informative? Are you out of your fucking mind? Left Behind doesn't measure up to a good issue of Spider-Man, let alone Shakespeare. And this comparison is utterly asinine in the first place. Star Wars Episode I made more money than all the Shakespeare productions worldwide for all time have ever made. By this poster's logic, George Lucas is the greatest author to ever live.

Re:Well-made? (1)

Planesdragon (210349) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954211)

By this poster's logic, George Lucas is the greatest author to ever live.

Filmmaker, not author.

And, really, when we get right down to it, sales ARE our only solid measure of quality. So, if _Lucas_ has sold more tickets than any other filmaker--then, yes, he is the greatest.

That said, I wasn't discussing people, I was discussing works. And, by a lot of measurements (gross sales, cultural impact, extant fanbase, number of fans), Star Wars is "the best movie series EvAR!"

Re:Well-made? (3, Insightful)

nacturation (646836) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954224)

Isn't that a bit like judging L. Ron Hubbard's material by units sold? Sure, Dianetics may be a best seller but how does it rank when you subtract sales (often multiple copies [google.com]) to Scientologists? If it's still a mega-bestseller, then the book has been fairly judged. But if the book sells very few copies outside of the choir it's preaching to, what does that say about the quality?

Re:Well-made? (1)

Chasuk (62477) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954559)

Nope. We use units sold or dollars grossed, just like everyone else.

Like everyone else? I am hoping that you are being sarcastic. No one else that I have ever met in my life would equate quality with "units sold or dollars grossed."

If you aren't joking, then I humbly submit that Hinduism is "better" than Christianity based on the same logic, and that Roman Catholics are "better" than Baptists because there are more of them.

Oh, and when the followers of Islam outnumber the follwers of Christianity (and it will happen sooner than later), then Islam will suddenly become "better" than Christianity.

Worthington's Law (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954621)

Bob: This guy sucks!

David: None of these people seem to think so.

Bob: I don't care; I'm funnier than he is.

David: Oh yeah, if you're so funny, how come you don't have your own show?

Bob: I did until you fired me! Well, I just don't think he's so great.

David: He makes more money than you do.

[Bob ponders the thought.]

V.O.: That's right, Bob. Listen to your friend, a person who makes more money than you is better than you, and therefore beyond criticism. This is called the Worthington Law [which reads "More Money = Better Than"] and it's used to gauge the value of human worth. Carl Espick, economist, and editor of Value Magazine.

Carl: Yeah, that's right. So what do you think? Wrong! Whatever you were gonna say doesn't matter because I make more money than you. That's if you're 80% of the public. So, I'm right. Each year, Value Magazine ranks the 500 best people in the history of the world. Did you know that, according to Worthington's Law, the opera singer who called himself The "Great" Caruso was nowhere near as great as Sammy Hagar, The Red Rocker? So shut up, Caruso! Hey! Who's greater than Saint Francis of Assisi? How about, uh, Darryl Strawberry? See ya later, Saint Frannie, ya schmuck. Hey, guess who's better than Van Gogh. Let's see, after adjusting for inflation...[uses calculator] almost everybody! He made nothing! [shot of John fixing car]

John: So that means that I'm better than Van Gogh and Galileo put together!

Carl: And I'm better than you, brainiac. In 1995, Steve Peaters had no money. He was a public school teacher, so his opinion wasn't worth very much. But then, in 1996, he won the lottery, and he was a great man. Greater than Einstein, who made very little. But then, guess what this genius-for-a-day does. He goes and gives his money to charity. Now he's about as dumb as Einstein. Way to go, Einstein. So, read Value Magazine [unoriginal.com], and get to know the 500 best people in the world.

Re:Well-made? (1)

Dr. GeneMachine (720233) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953564)

If you seriously consider any of the books in the 'Left Behind' series to be well-made, that I can't wait to see some of the games that come out of this conference.

Well, the two-dimensional charakters and the overall flatness of the story would lend itself to a 2D-sidescroller...

Re:Well-made? (1, Insightful)

Mr. Darl McBride (704524) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953619)

Well-made? Do Christians use different standards of judging craft than non-Christians? Asked another way, have you ever tried to read any of the Tim Lahaye books? If you seriously consider any of the books in the 'Left Behind' series to be well-made, that I can't wait to see some of the games that come out of this conference.
The books are pretty horrible. The movies are considerably better. Not top shelf stuff, but better than most TV specials.

That said, pretty much every Christian movie that does well deals with the rapture. I'm not sure how many movies and games you can make out of that...

The Passion pretty much did well because somebody finally managed to get a snuff film into the theaters. It was dead boring apart from that.

Re:Well-made? (1)

VividU (175339) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953910)

The Passion pretty much did well because somebody finally managed to get a snuff film into the theaters.

Great insight. I would mod you up if I could.

Re:Well-made? (1)

salesgeek (263995) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953849)

There is a huge difference between a best-selling book and a well-made one. Much like software.

Re:Well-made? (4, Insightful)

tolldog (1571) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954358)

Actually there is a large problem in the Christian market to produce crap, slap a Christian label on it and try to sell it because its Christian.

Too many places try to blur the lines between business and religion and use the sentiments of the buyer to out way the quality of the product. It is something I get frustrated with in all forms of Christian media.

What the real kicker is is when something starts getting popular and is being produced so that it can compete in the secular market, it is often looked at as selling out... and may get shunned until it gets picked up by the secular market as the next best thing, then, it gets pulled back in and its shown as a great example of Christians producing popular stuff.

I have never seen a group so backwards and in a bubble as Christian entertainment.

-Tim

What I wanna know... (0, Offtopic)

Mr. Darl McBride (704524) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953518)

...is how come Little Caesars didn't milk The Passion for its advertising opportunities?

*ding dong!* "We're sorry. Your second pie's on us." "Pizza pizza!"

You have GOT to be putting me on ... (2, Insightful)

ninewands (105734) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953629)

I haven't seen "The Passion of the Christ" nor do I intend to ... but to see the "Left Behind" series mentioned in a sentence stating that Bible-based products do well in the market "if they are well-made" ... GIVE ME A BREAK!

The "Left Behind" series of alleged Christian sci-fi books" is, not to put too fine a point on it, hackneyed crap. The fact that they do well in the market is more a result of tightly targeting them on the large evangelical Christian demographic group than the quality of the writing.

Re:You have GOT to be putting me on ... (1)

Dr. GeneMachine (720233) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953940)

You might be interested in this guy [typepad.com]. He is doing a page-per-page review of left behind. Started last year, has managed it to get to pg. 45 up to now. Absolutely hilarious, witty and theologically well founded. I never got past page 30 of Left Behind myself, but I'm closely following this review.

Re:You have GOT to be putting me on ... (1)

DAldredge (2353) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954228)

Or it could be that, if they are as bad as you say, that crap sells.

B. Spears.
NSync.
MageKnight.

All crap, all make lots of money.

Re:You have GOT to be putting me on ... (1)

Bishop (4500) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954467)

I had not heard of this series of books until now. All I can say is: "wow." I like Salon's take [salon.com] on the series.

How Christian is Christian? (1)

Hythlodaeus (411441) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953651)

Although extreme Bible-thumping explicitly Christian games thus far have been rare and poorly-executed, there's no shortage of mainstream games with religious over/undertones, symbolism, or commentary. Deus Ex, Xenogears, and Alpha Centauri come to mind. Can someone name more?

Re:How Christian is Christian? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953949)

No, but I can guarantee you that most of the target market for developers that will go to that conference would be appalled at the games you mentioned. Something about blasphemy. Stupid-ass religious sheep...

Re:How Christian is Christian? (2, Funny)

Haeleth (414428) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954315)

Although extreme Bible-thumping explicitly Christian games thus far have been rare and poorly-executed, there's no shortage of mainstream games with religious over/undertones, symbolism, or commentary. Deus Ex, Xenogears, and Alpha Centauri come to mind. Can someone name more?

Um... Doom?

Little do they know, or maybe they do... (2, Insightful)

a whoabot (706122) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953712)

Commodotising ideas into consumer products for the mass market does just that: initiates them into the mass. The mass purely consumes. This won't help the actual influence of any ideas they're trying to put forth, it will have a negative effect if any. It's as quicksand.

Of course, they probably do know this, and it's just an attempt to get money for something or someone(s), somwhere. One must admit, that wouldn't be out of line with the actions of "religious" groups in the past.

Good times (2, Funny)

Wylfing (144940) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953727)

Seriously, there are some great games out there. I recommend this [games-workshop.com] or this [games-workshop.com]. Burn, heretic, burn!

Some people don't get it (5, Insightful)

Quill_28 (553921) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953782)

Why Christians games?

Quite simply the more games mature the more "adult" they become.

They same has happened with books, movies, and music.

Christian music is not what it is today because it has Christian lyrics, it was started as a clean alternative to the music of the day.

If mainstream music stayed "clean", Christian music would never have become so popular it may never have even been a seperate category.

The same will happen will books, movies, and computer games over time.

Computer games have slowly "matured" where it is not uncommon to have swearing, adult topics, etc, etc.

Christians don't desire to have "Christians" games(or any other type of media) so much as games that don't go against their moral beliefs.

Sorry for the disjointed post.

Re:Some people don't get it (1)

ninewands (105734) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954004)

Quoth the poster:
Christian music is not what it is today because it has Christian lyrics, it was started as a clean alternative to the music of the day.

I beg to differ. "Christian popular music," more particularly, "Christian Rock," "Christian Metal" and "Christian Rap" were specifically invented to 1) allow Christian youth to think of themselves as "kewl," and 2) as an attempt to proselytize.
If mainstream music stayed "clean", Christian music would never have become so popular it may never have even been a seperate category.

I rather have my doubts about that ... I clearly remember hearing that "Rock and Roll is the Devil's music" back in the fifties. However, it's overbearing popularity forced the evangelicals to come up with something in a similar vein in order to retain any semblance of cultural relevance. Those who really like Rock, Metal and Rap consider the "Christian" variants to be laughable at best, pathetic at worst.

Personally, I'll stick with Classical (where all the GOOD Christian music is (Palestrina, Faure, Bach, Brahms, Handel, the Haydns, Pachelbel, etc.)) and Jazz.

Re:Some people don't get it (2, Interesting)

Quill_28 (553921) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954244)

I would disagree. I listened to both "Christian" music and pop music in the late 80's.

My main reason for listening to Christian music was not to be kewl, it was because alot of the music of the day went against my beliefs, plain and simple. A lot of other people felt the same way. I would also attribute the rise of country is the 90s for the same reason.

>Those who really like Rock, Metal and Rap consider the "Christian" variants to be laughable at best, pathetic at worst.

Yes, all "Christian" artists suck and have no talent. ::sigh::
Yes, Christian music started behind and as a whole will probably always will be behind(except for a few genres).
But there are some excellent artists that are as good as you will find.

But if you can get past the message there is some good stuff out there.

Re:Some people don't get it (1)

Wildcat J (552122) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954533)

Quoth the poster (regarding popular music):
...it was because alot of the music of the day went against my beliefs, plain and simple...
...and later (referring to Christian music):
But if you can get past the message there is some good stuff out there.
I'm not one to criticize your preference for the Christian music scene, but this strikes me as a logical inconsistency.

-J

Re:Some people don't get it (1)

aminorex (141494) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954550)

There's plenty of *good* Christian music. John Coltrane is the pinacle of Christian jazz, in my
view. Waterdeep did great alt-rock. I think they
are still around. Sufjan Stevens rocks my world
right now.

Do these people have a CLUE? (1)

ninewands (105734) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953789)

I actually clicked the link to see the CGDC official website and was treated to a Flash homepage that rendered about 1.5 inches tall and 3 inches wide on my Sun 21" Trinitron ... I hate to think what it would be like on my 17" monitor at home! The text on the page was, needless to say, completely illegible.

Re:Do these people have a CLUE? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953983)

I noticed the same on Firefox, but it works fine in IE. Sounds like it's up to the usual high quality standards of Christian alternative products.

Of course, if they were smart, they probably wouldn't be Christian...

Re:Do these people have a CLUE? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954074)

Yes, Larry Wall is a blooming idiot.

Along with C.S. Lewis and Tolkien.

My boss is a Christian and happens to be the author of a well-known protocol that is used everyday, and author of numerous rfcs.

Please making statements like that only shows how un-smart you are.

Re:Do these people have a CLUE? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954150)

Hey! I said "probably." I think you can chalk up four out of over two billion to statistical aberration.

"proved that Bible-based products can do well" (4, Insightful)

Strange Ranger (454494) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953841)

WRONG. It proves that good story based products , good music, and good film will do well regardless of whether they're Bible based or not. Good art / good media is NOT PREACHY.

"Christian Rock"
"Christian Books"
"Christian Film"
and now "Christian Games". These usually turn out awful because
A:They're more concerned with evangelizing the audience than with telling a good story or being entertaining. And
B:The people making them are Christians first and producers of art/media/content second. It usually comes out like it was produced in a church basement by people with left over bake-sale cookies and a very inflated sense of relevance.

Sure they'll tell you that "OF COURSE we're Christians first above all else." But we all have rolls to play in life. You don't see any Christian Football Players. No, you see Football players who happen to be Christian.

If you want to build "Christian Games" then first concentrate on the game, the message comes second (or forget it). If you build Christian morality into something like for instance the Sims (community, teamwork, tolerance, sharing, caring generosity, etc.) then you'll have a great Christian game that's for everyone and teaches Christian values to the masses. So much better than a preachy Christian game for Christians that re-cements their already well indoctrinated beliefs.

Feel free to replace "games" with "music", "books", etc. above.

Re:"proved that Bible-based products can do well" (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954016)

Um, both the Left Behind books and The Passion of the Christ sucked donkey balls. So, no, it hasn't proven that well-produced Christian goods do well in the marketplace. There have never been any. Sort of like how in logic, you can't prove anything if you assume something that is fundamentally false, such as 1 == 2.

Re:"proved that Bible-based products can do well" (3, Interesting)

angst_ridden_hipster (23104) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954749)

Well, yes and no. There are cases where a work is both "good art" and "religiously preachy," and some of these are quite successful in the market.

For example, I could make a strong argument that U2* was both good art *and* religiously preachy.

Similarly, C. S. Lewis' Narnia books were reasonably good art and quite religiously preachy.

* U2 was a rock'n'roll band popular before some of you were born, and after some of you were in college.

FUN (3, Funny)

Sevn (12012) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953864)

Suggestions for Titles:

The Adventures of Young God

Moses vs Hoover Dam

The Great Whale Escape

Sodom and Gommorah Sims

Santa vs The Israelites

Jesus Chainsaw Massacre (aka WWJD Smackdown)

Let's hope they're more fun than... (1)

lightspawn (155347) | more than 9 years ago | (#8953901)

Wisdom Tree [atarihq.com]'s NES games.

Did you know Sunday Funday was just a graphics hack of Menace Beach?

Also see: Bible Adventures. [seanbaby.com]

"GOOD WORK! BUT YOU FORGOT BABY MOSES!".

Yeah, I'm sure the passion of the christ will make for a great game, with the player controlling Jesus, and.. getting beat up and stuff?

Now, if you could switch to Robot Jesus, Ninja Jesus, or Hyper Jesus, then we'd have something...

Be sure to update your video card drivers... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8953965)

...So that Jesus will be properly rendered as being black.

Why? (1)

alyosha1 (581809) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954470)

As a Christian and a gamer, why do I need specifically 'Christian' games? I don't play 'Christian' soccer or 'Christian' chess now, do I? I can see the point of some Christian literature if it's actually educating me on some point of my faith , (writers like Philip Yancey [christianitytoday.com] come to mind). I can see the point of Christian music like that of delirious [delirious.co.uk] and Tim Hughes [worshipmusic.com] that serves a purpose in connecting me with God, but beyond that I'll be the first to admit that a lot of what the Christian sub-culture churns out is poor ripoffs of mainstream.
I presume that the marketdroids have realised that we're just another market segment that will dutifully lap up whichever books, films, and now even games that have the word 'christian' stamped on them.
I wish this wasn't the case, but it is.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8954629)

As a Christian and a gamer, why do I need specifically 'Christian' games? I don't play 'Christian' soccer or 'Christian' chess now, do I?

Someone should develop a Christian chess game with Christian rules. If someone takes your knight you give him a pawn as well, in keeping with Jesus' commandment "if someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic". The ultimate goal is to have a stalemate where no pieces are taken and both players pray for each other, so that you can keep Jesus' commandment to love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.

I think the biggest problem with developing a Christian chess game is in following Jesus' commandment "if you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor" -- how one plays chess after removing all the pieces from the board hasn't yet been solved.

Sympathy for the Christian Gamer (1)

OpenSourceOfAllEvil (716426) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954587)

Probably a lot of us have a typical response when we see a group that labels itself Christian going after a hot market whether it be music, games, junk food or whatever. But...

I recall receiving a letter sometime in the 1980's from a Christian youth regarding an RPG I co-wrote. His problem was he desperately wanted to play the game but since it contained demons as part of the monster list he wasn't allowed to. Apparently, in his case it was simply the label "demon" that placed it on the banned list and he pleaded that we simply change the name from "demon" to "beast". Alas, I couldn't accommodate him and ended up writing him a letter of apology.

Moral of story: There are a lot of frustrated gamers out there with choices limited by conscience or parents.

So, my sympathy goes to the gamer rather than a group trying to figure out how to get cash out of something like Davey and Goliath's Xtreme Rapture Rampage or whatever.

Re:Sympathy for the Christian Gamer (1)

StocDred (691816) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954728)

And that's exactly what's wrong with the WWJD crowd. I realize that this is a severely truncated story, but changing 'demon' to 'beast' is not going to make one bit of difference to the content. The 'beasts' won't have any less teeth, cloven hooves, or pointy tales. This kid's plan was to slip the book under the radar.

It's a classic example of christians ignoring the actual content and instead getting all hung up on the most obvious of labels. If they actually held any strong beliefs on restricting their kid's exposure to that, they'd do more than pay it lip service by banning the word 'demon.' But it's easier to wholesale ban one word than pay attention to whatever dopey RPG their kid wants to play. Hell, the kid probably wanted the RPG precisely for the demons.

The kid instinctually knows this is bullshit, so he made a valiant attempt to strike the one, single word and therefore get the game rubber stamped OK.

Similarly, Janet Jackson's tit is the Most Offensive Media Ever and America must be cleansed... while the Jesus Chainsaw Massacre racks up $300 million at the box office. The content only matters when the groupthink says it does.

Am I the only one... (1)

Corpsesarecute (713522) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954609)

supprised to learn that there is a Christian Game Developers orginization? Sometimes I think I'm the only one that got the context of the post.

Yeah, but can you paint? (2, Insightful)

Avallach (228083) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954617)

There's an old article I remember reading by a gentleman named John Fischer which talked about his efforts as a child to begin a Christian painting company. Things went very well until they knocked on the door of a lady who asked a very pertinent question: "Can you paint?"

Quite frankly, the problem with most Christian software is that it's not fun or well made. The problem with most Christian novels is that they're poorly written, and (dare I say...) the problem with most Christian music is that it's just not good music. (I say this having encountered and continuing to encounter a great deal of the material in question...)

Art and entertainment with an idealogical basis behind them (or theological) sets itself up for one of two fates. Either it accomplishes its attempts to communicate the transcendant and becomes truly great, or, more often, it fails miserably. Very rarely does it seem to be "just art" or "just entertainment." The art gains the hearing for the message, but only provided the art is of sufficient quality.

If Christians wish to use games/music/books/software/whatever as a means to share their faith, the first step in doing so *must* be to be one of the very best designer/artist/author/programmers out there. Simply being a "Christian programmer" is not enough. One must be a very good programmer who is also a Christian.

passion of the christ game (1, Funny)

austad (22163) | more than 9 years ago | (#8954667)

What would the point of this game be? To evade the romans, change history, and never allow the religion to come about? Which would probably go against their beliefs.

Or to find the romans, taunt them, let them beat you, and then die? Which, on the other hand, is usually the opposite point of playing a game.

I'm unsure what the point of this game would be.
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