July 09, 2005

Couple O' Links

Here's a link to a discussion with video game developers about why we haven't seen any serious attempts at religious video games. Any thoughts? I've got a couple but I want you all to start commenting for Pete's sake. Here's a couple relevent bits to start you thinking:
1) Cinema has many serious mainstream treatments of religious source material.

2) Though perhaps a smaller industry by numbers of consumers, money wise the video game industry is starting to get close to, if not already having surpassed, the movie industy.

3) One of the defining characteristics of video games is player control, while movies are more a medium for presenting a single forceful perspective.

I might think of something later, but that should at least get you all started. Also, I want to point out that you don't need to be familiar with video games to talk about this in the abstract, so all you people saying, "Oh, I'm not a gamer, he doesn't want me to post." and just click that little comments link and put in your thoughts.

Next up we have an enormous audio interview with Avi Arad, Marvel big wig, about all things Marvel. It's fourty minutes broken up into six minute segments so you don't have to listen all at once. Topics covered include the future of some movie franchises already made into films (Fantastic Four, X-Men, Spiderman, etc.) and some upcoming franchises (Silver Surfer, Ghost Rider).

Here are a couple nicely shorter highlights of the above interview in printed form.

Thanks to Evil Avatar for the links.


Noumena said...

Well, there have been religious videogames. They've just been pieces of crap distributed on floppies ten years ago or free to download these days. So the real question is: why haven't major game developers made any religious games?

I'd like to give a two-part answer. First, the potential market for these sorts of videogames are mostly going to be the same sort of people who think videogames cause school shootings. You have to actually own an Xbox before you buy a religious game for it, which means not thinking it's a devil box that will poison your mind and cause you to shoot up your gym class.

Second, a lot of money moves through the videogame industry, but it really is dominated by a few companies that churn out formulaic swill pretty regularly, with a couple of notable offerings every year. A lot like the teevee/movie industry, really. Except that, in the videogame industry, religious themes haven't sold well, so they won't be made until someone makes one that does sell well.

We'll see religious games eventually, I'm sure; we just have a videogame industry that doesn't like to take chances on novel sorts of games.

MosBen said...

A problem brought up in the article is that as an interactive medium religious games would potentially allow gamers to question the decisions of the religious figures in the game. I mean, if you're controlling Moses and you get to walk around and choose who you talk to and where you walk, whether or not to jump and when, when it comes to a part where the character makes a big decision, even if the game only allows one action, the player might start questioning the legitimacy of those decisions.