Let’s get the news out of the way first: According to an SEC filing discovered by Stock Market Quarterly, Left Behind Games “will be featured in a limited number of Walmart stores covering a broad area of states. This new market test is a follow-up to the marketing trial conducted in approximately 100 Walmart stores in Texas during the 2009 Christmas sales season.”
Walmart is very interested in distributing the Christian games around the country, but before it invests heavily, the retailer would like to see how the games perform in broader regions first.
Troy Lyndon, CEO of Left Behind Games believes this opportunity will allow his company to “further test our sales model regionally will provide us with ongoing market insight and a chance to enhance sales. Our Walmart strategy continues to be validated as we focus on placement, promotions and sales for the 2010 holiday gift giving season, when a majority of games are sold.”
That’s the news, now here’s the reality: When video games first came on the scene, they were family friendly interactions that everyone could enjoy, but as time passed, and great progress was made in technology, things began to change and games were inching ever closer (still are today) to realism. With that progress came more violence, strong language, blood and Gore, and the last to hit the scene was nudity.
So things have changed, but people remained the same…… especially Christians, our values never change. But we love games.
My name is Ernice Gilbert and yes I’m a born again Christian and Founder/Editor-In-Chief of www.GamesThirst.com. It’s no secret that I love, and appreciate the art form that is video games. But something is definitely wrong with the direction we’re carelessly racing in without anyone stopping to ponder the consequences. With Every year that passes, developers seem to push the boundary ever closer to numbing the minds of teenagers and adults alike who play games by disturbingly and foolishly inserting vulgar behaviors in games even when those behaviors are totally uncalled for. Let’s start with the language – this one really pisses me off.
Killzone 2 is the prime example of a game made stupid by inserting F-Bombs and other dirty language in situations totally uncalled for. And for what, to say the game is mature? That’s crap and bad writing skills if you ask me. I have many Christian friends, and you know what we did? We tried playing the game but realized from the inception that we couldn’t so we threw the thing away.
Same with Call of Duty: Wolrd At War – we opened the game (pumped to play) and the first word to come out of the title’s narration was a F-Bomb. Why in the freaking world would they do that is beyond me. It was not called for.
The first Modern Warfare was cool, but the second, in the Afghanistan scene, a F-Bomb was let loose.
I commended Battlefield: Bad Company for giving an option to eliminate the vile language, but the second does not give said option. Why not? Really, the first did so why not the second? It was a great step in the direction of respecting people….. But EA and DICE lapsed.
I am not trying to change the industry here, but if we’re going to trod certain paths, why not do it with precaution? There’s a huge Christian market in almost every form of entertainment. Look at what The Passion Of The Christ did in Hollywood. It’s still one of the biggest grossing films of all time. The music industry is no different: Christian artists sell millions of records every month – the gaming industry can do even better if the leaders decide to take steps to lure them in. They’re not. They’re driving Christians further away and in the process loosing hundreds of millions of dollars.
And why in the world a good action-packed Christian game hasn’t been created? I’m not talking about the low budget Left Behind series; I’m eluding to God of War type action games, especially stories from the old testament. Think of a game based around David and Goliath, or Samson, Elijah, Joshua and countless others who were constantly placed in the daunting position to defend their city, their people and values of their God with the sword. I reckon, a game like what I just explained would sell millions and millions without the vulgar language and uncalled for sex scenes that go into these new games.
They can do it, but they don’t. I’m talking about publishers and developers. It’s a risk yes, but definitely one worth taking. But who am I kidding? These people don’t give a crap about me and my Christian values – to their own loss.
Again, this is not an attempt to “change the industry”, neither is it an attempt to rile up religious wars. But it’s definitely a call to developers to create the option in games that would allow gamers to disable certain aspects of it if they chose to.
Blood And Gore
Are the three main reasons why the Christian community haven’t delved full throttle into the industry. Also, developing a great Christian game would do very well. I have some ideas, so if you devs are lacking, call on me.
God bless you all and long live the industry.