« New Game Blogger in Town | Main | Emulator Vigilantes »

06/04/2003

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Liz

I would guess there would be more than thirty people there this year, but its hard to say which slant this conference could take. Are kids zapping Satan, or "sinners"(i.e. gays, lesbians, unwed mothers, abortionist, etc.)? It could get more disturbing than anything we've ever seen in the past from video game industry. It would be interesting to know who funds these projects.

Draigon

The idea of christian video games makes me want to laugh. When I was younger, I remember going to my friends house and he had a christian game (actually it may have been seventh day adventist if there's a difference) where you grabbed holy armor and swords and attacked demons. It was for the NES I believe.

If the idea behind a religious game is to teach what that religion believes I think it could be done in a pretty straight forward manner. If they're trying to persuade you to attach to their beliefs though then they need to be subtle. In that sense you wouldn't know what the best christian game was because it would blend in completely with all other games.

hmm... I wonder if Enter the Matrix could qualify as a christian game. :)

A!

is America's Army a christian game?

Nathan K.

I admit to limited exposure to "Christian" games, but what I have seen and played has brought me to the same conclusion I reached when examining Christian music. A sub-par product that is only "successful" because it appeals to a small and starving market.

Dobronahue

as a rabid christian and rabid gamer, and having some involvement in music, i'ld like to make a posit to this topic. Christian people and groups looking to use video games as a medium still have two choices left open to them:
A: to try and produce software directed specificaly at a christian market.

B to produce software carying christian themes (love, meeknes, selflesness, serving others holiness, helping those less fortunate. good VS evil, overcoming hatred, truth, spiritual awareness etc/) that are still viable to the general market.

the aformentioned christian music industry at some point in the late 70's decided on course A, which has unfortunately left the intire industry(save a small segment)anemic and unstable, and yes, producing a sub-standard product much(though not all) of the time.
there have been noteable christian artists that have chosen the mainstream channal and done well for themselves.

i recal cheesy christian NES games too **shudder** but in an age where games like ICO and THE SIMS are the halmarks there is finaly room, i think, for games and there developers to carry these themes and possibly even (gasp) the gospel itself through this emerging and complex artform. we ned to remember that spiritual themes have predominated the arts for mellenia. as THIS artform matures, i am hopefull that we can see truly challanging games, not just games that challange our hand-eye coordination, but games that challange us as people.

Sk8punkdude

this could get interesting...i've been recently saved myself and was thinking how interesting it would be to see christian video games for PCs and consoles, like a more christ oriented sk8 game, with christian groups like mxpx, ghoti hook, and philmore and jesus oriented rappers like Coleon and T-Bone on the soundtrack. this'll get good and open up a whole new window for god in people's lives.

OneEyedJack

"B to produce software carrying christian themes (love, meekness, selflessness, serving others, holiness, helping those less fortunate. good VS evil, overcoming hatred, truth, spiritual awareness, etc.) that are still viable to the general market."

I am not religious, nor am I planning to start. I have been playing games that have been targeted at my demographic (male) since I started playing. *IF* a game came down the pike that rewarded helping(not sim anything) instead of killing, I would love to play it. Oh, and it can't be aimed at children, a la Animal Crossing/Pokemon. I propose further on this idea, that it would have a GTA3-like engine in which you have the choice to do "Good" or "Evil" with proper outcomes for that decision. However, thinking about it more, doing "Evil" in the game would pretty much be like GTA3, in a way, wouldn't it? :D

travist

Growing up, my parents were influenced heavily on the topic of christian media. For quite a while my siblings and I were only allowed to watch christian shows, listen to christian music and play christian video games. If i remember correctly, the problem with christian video games wasn't anything controversial (ie, no "killing the sinners" took place in any of them) the problem was simply that they were not fun. None of the friends I had at that time enjoyed them; who could? We wanted to be ninjas, we wanted to cast spells and kill aliens. What we did not particularly care for was the sub-par graphics of the christian games mixed with the "fun" of memorizing bible verses and "bible character trivia". Possibly if a group of developers were to license the unreal engine and use it in an innovative way to create a game adhering to their idealogies (spelling?) then they would have something kids/teens wouldn't roll their eyes at.

Cyril Lachel

While I agree with some of your comments, it should be known that the first CDGC had a stronger showing than I expected. I was the only reporter who reported the story, and even then, I am completely, 100% non christian (and was worried about the very idea of Christian gaming).

But the event turned out to be memorable. You should make sure and check out the full report of the first CDGC.

http://www.defunctgames.com/cgdcview001.htm

Cyril Lachel
http://www.defunctgames.com

Tim Emmerich

The second conference is over. We missed Cyril! Justin covered us though so look for his write-up soon.

The feedback I received was that it was a success. I'll be typing in reports as soon as I can. Rough count of unique attendees was 90!

We'll definitely be having a third one next year. And hopefully some other tangible results and improvements soon (look for the press release).

May the Lord bless you.
Tim Emmerich
founder of CGDC

Joseph Ashizawa

Christian games is an area in interactive multimedia that has been severely scoffed at, but I believe it is also an area in which extraordinary growth is achievable. One of the most encouraging efforts today that I believe has subtly revolutionized views on Christian media/multimedia is the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Although many people watch this film and play the game with little knowledge of the theological emphasis behind it, it clearly has a message that is profoundly christian. Tolkien and C.S Lewis put considerable thought into biblical presentation. To imply rather then to impose, to suggest rather then preach. This is why you never hear the words "sin", "jesus" or "christian" etc. However, I would say that the Lord of the Rings has been very well recieved and has also sparked people to think about many things beyond the normal graphics, sound, action, and other redundant effects. Similarly I hope you all don't give up on the Christian gaming effort yet ^^

Cheers!
Joseph

Mark T

If you would like to see what some of the Christian developers have been up to, check out
my website, Paper Street Games. The Christian based games are growing in detail and quality, and a lot do have great themes that appeal to
both audiences in now and more in the future.

=)

Most Christian game developers realize that you
don't need to beat someone over the head with
a bible to get a message accross about just general, timeless stories, good vs evil etc, and that goes
for the games especially. The games are mainly
for fun and non-graphic violence. Some games are
meant for specificly teaching Sunday Schools, but there are a lot for just fun and adventure. The adventure Christian games and even the pencil and paper RPGS are quite more popular than you may think!

=)

Have fun!

Mark T

Neil MacQueen

Who are the REAL customers for Christian software?

Imagine a customer with an annual budget, looking for new and engaging Christian resources. You've just discovered the quarter million Sunday Schools in the USA who work with over 30 million children every year on a regular basis.

Why then are most Christian game developers targeting older male teens and men in their 20's? That's the group least likely to buy ANYTHING Christian. Ok, some call it "evangelism." But if it puts the developer out of business in two years because of poor sales, is it good evangelism?

Church software doesn't have to compete with multi-million dollar Nintendo games and the latest 3D "shooters." Those are not an option on Sunday morning or evening (thankfully). And they don't have to compete in the home either. Christian parents buy Christian software for their kids as an alternative to violent games.

And 4th graders don't need the latest game engines. They like what's fun and won't sit for 30 levels of any game.

Selling software through CHRISTIAN distribution channels requires attention to theological sensitivities, (ie, not ticking off the broad middle) and avoiding "shooting" anything. The problem with developing with "game engines" is they are all designed to SHOOT something. Their code options are not built to creatively present content, just action and reaction.

How do I know these things?
Because my company has been distributing, consulting and building Christian software since 1996.

Neil
Sunday Software Inc.

aDeus

I am a Xian animator, and its in my aspirations to get into Xian gaming (3D)... My first inspiration came from some novels - "Piercing the Darkness" and "This Present Darkness" by Frank Peretti... I believe that these novels are great in helping to explain the spiritual workings of the world... and I also believe that they provide a very good type of storyline for a Xian game...

I think that if you're going to aim a Xian game at teenage males, then you have to incorporate a strong mission play... but I also think that a good vs evil / angels vs demons game must incorporate violence... We must remember that Xianity is concerned with the spiritual first and the physical second... And the spiritual world is at war!... you just have to walk into any university and you can see it...

I hope that Xians take this medium seriously... It is the biggest entertainment industry after all... we cannot afford to hand it over to the darkness...

God bless

aDeus

I am a Xian animator, and its in my aspirations to get into Xian gaming (3D)... My first inspiration came from some novels - "Piercing the Darkness" and "This Present Darkness" by Frank Peretti... I believe that these novels are great in helping to explain the spiritual workings of the world... and I also believe that they provide a very good type of storyline for a Xian game...

I think that if you're going to aim a Xian game at teenage males, then you have to incorporate a strong mission play... but I also think that a good vs evil / angels vs demons game must incorporate violence... We must remember that Xianity is concerned with the spiritual first and the physical second... And the spiritual world is at war!... you just have to walk into any university and you can see it...

I hope that Xians take this medium seriously... It is the biggest entertainment industry after all... we cannot afford to hand it over to the darkness...

God bless

aDeus

I am a Xian animator, and its in my aspirations to get into Xian gaming (3D)... My first inspiration came from some novels - "Piercing the Darkness" and "This Present Darkness" by Frank Peretti... I believe that these novels are great in helping to explain the spiritual workings of the world... and I also believe that they provide a very good type of storyline for a Xian game...

I think that if you're going to aim a Xian game at teenage males, then you have to incorporate a strong mission play... but I also think that a good vs evil / angels vs demons game must incorporate violence... We must remember that Xianity is concerned with the spiritual first and the physical second... And the spiritual world is at war!... you just have to walk into any university and you can see it...

I hope that Xians take this medium seriously... It is the biggest entertainment industry after all... we cannot afford to hand it over to the darkness...

God bless

mulac28

Here is a great site for Christian video game reviews http://www.gamepraise.net

mulac28

Here is a great site for Christian video game reviews http://www.gamepraise.net

The comments to this entry are closed.

Subscribe to the mailing list!

* indicates required