Games and religion

So it’s Sunday and I decided to completely ignore all obligations and tasks I should be doing and just lean back and let myself be inspired. Sometimes life needs a little receiving instead of always doing. And what do you know? I was so inspired that I have to share it here!

I took the time to see the Game Design challenge at GDC 2011 – and boy was it worth it. It’s an hour long and totally worth your time. The design challenge this year was to create a game that was also a religion or could become a religion. The designers were Jason Rohrer, John Romero and Jenova Chen – who are all amazing and definitely great thinkers about the expression of games.

What an interesting challenge and what insight these designers have. Jason and Jenova both took a more personal approach about what religion was to them, whilst Romero made a sort of interesting satire of religion or Christianity in itself by using Twitter. I enjoyed all three presentations and I definitely valued all of their definitions of religion and how they created them with game – dare I say narrative? – or game perception, maybe? They all thought about religion creatively and managed to extract the mechanics of religion into game mechanics – and that’s very genious!

They all certainly reaffirmed by love for the expressive and adventurous nature of games. And I adore GDC for making this challenge every year. It’s lovely to see great minds rise to “impossible” challenges.


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