Atheists raising hell over religion in Spore

atheistÜber game creator, Will Wright, thought there would be a backlash against his game, Spore, from those who believed in God.

Why? Spore is basically about the evolution of life in the cosmos–an adventure about a single celled life form that eventually evolves into a sentient, space-hopping civilization.

But in an odd twist of irony, it isn’t the religious minded that are complaining about the game’s content; it turns out it is the hardcore atheists who are raising hell, so to speak. The reason being that Spore depicts religion in the game.

Wright said:

"I think our bigger fear was that we didn’t want to offend any religious people; but looking at the discussion that unfolded from this thing, what we had was a good, sizeable group of players that we might call militant atheists, and the rest of the players seemed very tolerant, including all of the religious players."

The reaction from the atheist crowd totally surprised Wright.

"I didn’t expect to hit hot buttons on the atheist side as much; I expected it on the religious side. But so far I’ve had no critical feedback at all from anybody who is religious feeling that we were misrepresenting religion or it was bad to represent religion in the game. It was really the atheists."

Wright said that he and his development team took great care to make sure that Spore wouldn’t be overly offensive to those of faith. However, in spite of his self-proclaimed designation as an atheist, he also left the door open that there may indeed, be a God.

"I’m open to the idea that there is some creator somewhere."

"We have a number of team members that are pretty religious. And so in design, on the team, in our small, little microcosm of players out there, we tried our best to make sure we weren’t overtly offending any religious people, but yet we wanted to include the idea, the concept of religion in the game."

The game is about evolution, per se, so who does the player, the one who directs the life organisms, represent?

"We didn’t want to go too far down that path: we leave the whole creation of the universe question open. Obviously as the player you’re coming in and playing something like a god, directing the evolution of a species, but we never really state who you the player are."

Maybe the real issue here is knowing that a game is just that–a game, and not propaganda to establish any sort of religion or for that matter, any atheistic point of view. For instance, anyone well versed in the RPG world of games understands that a good deal of "religious theory" is sprinkled throughout gameplay. It isn’t supposed to be taken serioulsy. It’s only a plot element.

Perhaps some people need to take a "timeout" and not read too much into video games.

[via eurogamer]


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Author: GamerNode Staff View all posts by

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