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Old 06-04-2011, 10:15 AM   #1
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Default Goodbye Fun Adventure Games, Hello Indoctrination.

As one who was raised on adventure games, I remember when they were made strictly for fun; exploring new places, humorous dialog, solving puzzles and compelling stories. Now it seems they are made to promote the latest political message, to brainwash young people into believing lies. I'm not naming names, but certain games coming from a certain place in the world that all contain a hidden agenda are becoming mainstream, like certain films that are less entertainment than propagainment.

Why is it necessary to force this on us? I thought we played games for entertainment purposes, not social and/or political reasons. That kind of message should remain on an internet blog or radio commentary, not in a adventure game.

Must politics dominate every medium? Why can't we have some that are apolitical, an escape from reality instead of heavy-handed preaching? That's the reason I started playing games, because they were fantasy, and I thought that was the point.
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Old 06-04-2011, 10:32 AM   #2
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Oh no...

For all these years, these forums have managed to remain free from politics in general and from the utter loopiness of the US political debate in particular. Can't it stay that way? Pretty please with sugar on top?
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Old 06-04-2011, 10:45 AM   #3
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Perhaps the OP can cite some examples, his strange theory isn't much good without some concrete examples.
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Old 06-04-2011, 02:50 PM   #4
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I don't really know what the OP is talking about. There are very few political games that I can think of. There was Moment of Silence which was a 1984-style story against totalitarianism. Alternativa from 2009 had a similar story. We had Beneath a Steel Sky, which featured a lot of government ideals and corruption. Further back was Infocom's A Mind Forever Voyaging which glimpsed of the future of 80s U.S. policies ending up with a barbaric police state. That last game would probably be the most political adventure game I can think of. None of them, however, involved brainwashing as they are all freely discussed political ideas explored within the context of a game.
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Old 06-04-2011, 03:30 PM   #5
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He is obviously talking about A new beginning. And the debate about politics vs arts/entertainment is so old and your position is so reactionary that I think I'll pass on this one for now, thank you very much.
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Old 06-04-2011, 04:14 PM   #6
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Recently there was also the free, but Channel 4 funded casual FMV sci-fi adventure game Curfew. An edutainment sort of thing meaning to teach younger people about the value of citizen rights.

Anyway, any strong, serious statement is bound to offend someone, risks being exaggerated in comparison to reality, and maybe even can affect people's actions negatively to some extent. But can you really brainwash people through a video game in the modern (Western) world of Internet and free speech? Hell no!
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Last edited by Ascovel; 06-05-2011 at 02:15 AM.
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Old 06-05-2011, 12:31 AM   #7
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This was extremely interesting.

@ghettodoghammer: Please name these games and movies (I haven't got the slightest idea of what you're talking about).
NP: Botanicula, Catherine, Dear Esther, Okami
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Old 06-05-2011, 01:36 AM   #8
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Default What about the sense of criticism?

I also find difficult to understand what OP means without clear examples. Besides, I think that in a large part of games, particularly shooting and such, it is possible to interpret the plot as respondent to political agendas of some sort.

There is a huge different though between freedom of expression in art and specific use of that form to 'brainwash" people.

As we are on the subject, I must say that I expect people, and young people in particular, to grow their sense of criticism towards the world, to develop that precious rational capability which protects and preserve their own independent thinking and understanding of the difference between what is real and what is a campaigned so that to enjoy their games discerning the crap from the fun in it.

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Old 06-05-2011, 01:38 AM   #9
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sounds like you are gettingg angry just for the fun of getting angry.

reactionary, over the top, exaggeration, pointless frustration.

many many reasons why the OP should not really be entertained with legitimate responses. (but i cant help myself )

the new beginning is a great game with a story the games designers cared about. if you don't like the message of the content of the story, don't play it.

to say gaming is forcing these things on you, is like complaining that McDonalds is forcing everyone to become fat and unhealthy. Make your choice and let others make theirs.

Mountain out of a mole-hill is an understatement for this topic.
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Old 06-05-2011, 05:19 AM   #10
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I thought we played games for entertainment purposes, not social and/or political reasons.

Who is "we"?
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Old 06-05-2011, 06:00 AM   #11
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Well, maybe he means games where the writing is manipulative, but I trust you're adult enough to either ignore those games if they don't appeal to you, or just put on your blinkers and enjoy the journey. No one is forcing anything on you.

Note, this is just my opinion.:
For instance, I personally didn't really like the writing in Heavy Rain. It's a game that tries to take itself too seriously. Let's face it, serious dramas are really difficult to make without them feeling somewhere artificial, hamfisted and unelegant.And Heavy Rain doesn't exactly excel in the voice talent department to pull off the drama with conviction.

That said, I enjoyed the game for what it was and even played it twice.

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Old 06-05-2011, 09:53 AM   #12
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First of all, no one young enough to be brainwashed is going to be playing a game like A New Beginning or any other adventure game that might seem manipulative so we don't have to worry about that. If you're trying to promote or recruit young followers to your beliefs, you literally could not pick a worse genre to do it in.

Secondly, I don't think we've ever seen an adventure game that comes even remotely close to being something that could be called "propagainment". The most shocking statements adventure games have made are "global warming is bad" and "Big Brother-type governments are evil!" If anything, it's gotten less heavy handed over the years. Lest we forget about this evil piece of brainwashing propaganda aimed SPECIFICALLY at kids:


There's no need to worry because there's nothing to worry about. I used to play KGB all the time when I was younger and other than giving me an unexplainable urge to crush Capitalism, it didn't have any effect on me.
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Old 06-05-2011, 01:31 PM   #13
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If you think poisoning and destroying the environment will not have repercussions, then you are certainly foolish. Whether from global warming, destroying our food supply, poisoning our water supply, etc... it is bound to have an effect.

Additionally, since well over 90% of actual scientists believe in global warming, I think it is safe to say that it is as much science as evolution. If you can't handle entertainment with social commentaries, feel free to watch reality tv(which is actually inadvertently a form of social commentary too).

Last edited by darthmaul; 06-05-2011 at 02:08 PM.
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Old 06-05-2011, 02:03 PM   #14
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Hey thats art. All art forms always have and always will include beliefs inherited from the artist. If you disagree that strongly with the message, then you can choose not to play that game? simple as that.
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Old 06-05-2011, 02:20 PM   #15
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Eco Quest, brainwashing? Wow. Just wow. I applaud Sierra for investing on a very relevant game that no company could care to produce these days.

I think it's true that games are becoming more serious and in general have more political commentaries than before, or attempt to convey some kind of message. This is fine to some extent. A good creative work is one that provides something more than mere entertainment. That said, a great creative work is one that, instead of conveying the message, poses a question and leaves us to ponder the answers.

I agree that the message alone is pure propaganda. Still, some propaganda (as in the case of EcoQuest) can be good. Another example of positive propaganda would be 1984, a most excellent book that accurately describes our modern society. Things could have turned out differently if we had listened to the warning...
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Old 06-05-2011, 02:28 PM   #16
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Any author who writes with no point of view whatsoever is generally an author not worth reading.
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Old 06-05-2011, 03:34 PM   #17
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Someone lock this stupid thread. It's an amateur troll attempt.

You don't like a game's content? Don't f***ing play it. You have a choice.
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Old 06-05-2011, 05:11 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Agustin View Post
Eco Quest, brainwashing?
The reference to Eco Quest was sarcasm. This thread is a protest of A New Beginning (the same one originally posted in our ANB review comments).

No reason to lock this thread. It's one person's genuine opinion. But it's certainly a bafflingly absurd stance. Even if one were to agree that climate change is a fear-mongering farce; even if one were to agree that developers shouldn't use source material that's important to them (two "agreements" of rather preposterous proportions), why shouldn't it be the subject of a video game? Let's see... a topical, relevant, (perceived) life-and-death issue that pits mankind's competing interests against each other. If a developer's job is to entertain, sounds like a no-brainer for an emotionally-charged thriller.

Not suprisingly, A New Beginning IS a fun game, and it most certainly does not repeatedly beat players over the head with its "message". If you're going to accuse a developer of propaganda, at least do them the courtesy of knowing what you're talking about by playing the game.
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Old 06-05-2011, 06:21 PM   #19
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It's an absurd overreaction; unmerited and unwarranted.

The fact that some people still deny climate change just blows my mind. It's just another issue for loopy conspiracy theorists to latch onto.
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Old 06-05-2011, 08:43 PM   #20
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I still can't see what the political issue is. Scientific yes, but where's the politics? Are there people playing Ecoquest or New Beginning who actually think that polluting our world won't have harmful effects? I would be surprised if those people were intelligent enough to figure out how to turn their computers on
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