Thursday, June 01, 2006

Next Time Christians Kvetch About Violence in Video Games

Remember this:

A top aide to mega-church pastor Rick Warren is advising the makers of a children's video game in which characters kill New Yorkers while shouting "Praise the Lord." When children tire of converting or killing New Yorkers, they can switch sides and command the demonic armies of the AntiChrist, and kill the conservative Christians. The real-time strategy game, slated for release in October 2006, is based on the best selling series of Left Behind novels by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. The web site of Left Behind Games states the involvement of Mark Carver on its Advisory Board. This web-based marketing tool also highlights his role as Executive Director of Mr. Warren's Purpose Driven Church. What appears to be going on here is an old-fashioned business practice called "endorsement by association."

Wonder if Christians stopped bitching about violence in movies after "The Passion of the Christ" came out. I do seem to recall some churches in Israel... um... "overlooking" copyright issues when they decided to play pirated copies in order to meet an Easter deadline. I'm sure Jesus would have done the same thing.

Update: Does the game encourage violence or conversion? See Layman's comment. Any "independents" out there have first-hand experience with the game?


Layman said...

The report is very inaccurate. The game does not have the player try to establish a theocracy or kill people who don’t convert. In fact, you are penalized for killing people, even though Christian forces are fighting against the anti-Christ’s army.

See more about the nature of the game, with quotes from secular reviewers who have actually played it:

Humbug said...

Are you saying people would exaggerate something out of proportion to reality? ;-)

Thanks for the lucid feedback Layman. Its good to see folks responding calmly and clearly in debates such as this.

I'm not much of a video-gamer myself, so I'll probably have to let time tell on this. I don't doubt that the game will probably turn out to be quite tame and reasonable.

Having to revise this post in the near future wouldn't be a bad thing.