Game Over – Faith Fighter Off the Web

29 04 2009

 

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This is another mess, really. Italian game developer, Molleindustria has taken its one-year-old Faith Fighter game off the internet after complaints by religious leaders and the Islamic Conference that it offends many people, Muslims, Christians, Jews, Hindus and Buddhists. It has deities from different religions, and even God himself fighting against each other.

The game isn’t really the most violent out there. From what I see, it’s almost caricature-like. If we are to talk about game-incited hatred, the list is really long and Faith Fighter is probably far down this list. 

 

Provoking Intolerance

Here’s the game’s pitch on the company’s website:

“Faith Fighter is the ultimate fighting game for these dark times. Choose your belief and kick the shit out of your enemies. Give vent to your intolerance! Religious hate has never been so much fun.”

It’s quite funny, really. The complaint that this provokes intolerance is probably valid to some extent. But remember also that players can choose their faith. Not all users will follow their real-life faith. It’s a game and the point is to have fun and go wild. People don’t play video games to imitate reality, but rather quite the opposite, to get away from reality.

Molleindustria already has a new game called Fight Fighter 2, a sequel, more modified version of the first one. And here’s part of the pitch:

“We regretted the use of irony and violence and this time we want to offer a positive, nonviolence educational game that teaches the universal values of tolerance and respect.”

 

From the Bloggers

Some bloggers pointed out that most complaints came from Muslims. This, again, reflects badly on all of us Muslims out there who don’t really care for religious insensitivity. I’m secular so my views are clearly different. What the Islamic Conference should have figured is that this would be another free speech fiasco; another stab at Islam and another proof that our religion is intolerant and backwards.

Jonathan Simeone wrote this on his American Reality blog:

“By giving into the demands of the Muslims that company was contributing to the world-wide program of allowing Muslims to determine what is and what is not protected speech…. If Muslims want to settle in the West they must understand that the West is under no obligation to go out of its way to accommodate the aspects of Islamic culture and law that limit the liberties and freedoms that define Western society.”

Profreedan wrote this on Mediasnoops:

“How about the religious lobby groups who are calling for this game to be banned get their own houses in order and sort out the nutjobs in their ranks who are creating fear of their religions before they start pointing the fingre at computer games?”

 

My Brother

My brother loves video games and internet games and now Xbox. He’s played them ever since he was in the one-digit age. He’s pretty experienced now, up-to-date with latest games. If you’re in my house, you would hear him screaming through his microphone, attached to his head with an ear piece. He would be yelling at my cousins at the other end of the line, or people from across the world, depending on whom they’re shooting at on Call of Duty or some other game.

Granted he gets rattled up easily. He faces accusations from my mother that these games are making him violent. But he’s no idiot. He knows that when he shuts off the game he’s in a difference world. It doesn’t carry on to his relationships with other people.

Really, people are much smarter than what these religious leaders think.

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