Catholic Video Games

Hello, I am Chris. I grew up as a cradle Catholic, and went to Catholic school all the way through and including High School.

I took a hiatus from the church for a few years, and rediscovered my roots a few years back. I don’t want to bore everyone with the details, but I am now a 4th Degree Knight of Columbus, and am searching for some help with a ministry that I feel I am being called towards.

I am one of the people who like to play computer games; specifically quest, story and puzzle games (Zelda and Final Fantasy). I have noticed that there is a major lack of games that have any Christian morals or themes to them, very specifically Catholic. I am bouncing some ideas around on how to put one together, but am at a loss.

I am looking for a website, book, or otherwise where I can locate some conversion stories. I know that I can always tune in the “Journey Home,” but am without cable TV. I have watched what I can from the EWTN website, but am wanting more.

Does anyone have any ideas?


***Catherine S. ***
Pointed out that these websites do have some games.

[catholicgames.com/](http://www.catholicgames.com/)
[cool2bcatholic.com/games.html](http://www.cool2bcatholic.com/games.html)

I did find Catacumen and another which is similar to Doom in the way that they are played.  However, it isn't quite what I am trying to make.

Christ - welcome back home.

There’s at least 2 possibly 3 now books entitled Surprised By Truth. I’d bet anything you can get them through www.catholic.com or your local Catholic bookstore. If those fail, try amazon.

Well the Castlevania games had a lot of Catholic imagery and themes, especially “Symphony of the night” for the playstation. I might also add Hitman 2 and the Silent Hill games.

You might be able to catch EWTN radio and hear the Journey Home show??

I don’t get reception here in Los Angeles believe it or not – wish I did, but then again I am only in my car for 10 or 15 minutes at a time.

I too have thought much about a Christian video game. I am currently working on one idea actually.

Good luck!

Hey all, have you ever played any video games that leaned toward Catholic/Christian teachings? I can think of some examples. I just bought Bioshock, and I’m loving the story. Reminds me a lot of Brave New World, if anyone’s read that. (I should mention that Bioshock is not something you give your 10 year old son to play, it’s rated M for Mature, 18+) The underwater dystopia of Rapture is a society founded on the principle of “No gods or kings, only Man.” It didn’t take long for them to destroy themselves. I haven’t played through the whole game yet, but the most striking detail so far is that the most smuggled item into Rapture is the Bible itself, along with crucifixes. All over this level I see boxes and boxes of Bibles and crucifixes. Also, I kept getting that feeling going through the city that what these people believe are not unlike what some Atheists believe today.

From Andrew Ryan, the villain and creator of Rapture:

Is a man not entitled to the sweat of his brow?
‘No,’ says the man in Washington, ‘it belongs to the poor.’
‘No,’ says the man in the Vatican, ‘it belongs to God.’
‘No,’ says the man in Moscow, 'it belongs to everyone.'
I rejected those answers. Instead, I chose something different. I chose the impossible. I chose…
Rapture.
A city where the artist would not fear the censor,
where the scientist would not be bound by petty morality,
where the great would not be constrained by the small.

I like how he specifically mentioned the Vatican as saying that the sweat of your brow belongs to God. :slight_smile:

Another example: Chrono Trigger was a great game that had some good subtle Christianity in it. (It’s rated E for everyone, and there’s a DS version that came out recently) This blog post explains it best: catholicvideogamers.blogspot.com/2010/04/chrono-trigger-christian-allegory.html (The bloggers are Catholic seminarian gamers :D)

Thoughts? Ideas? Games to suggest?

PS: also, forgive my low number of posts, I hope to increase that number soon. :slight_smile:

Welcome.

I’m a bit older now and getting out of the demographic for most console games, so I won’t have much to say here on BioShock itself.

While religious concepts and themes are good, how they are presented often in modern fiction gives me pause. I see good fiction (including video story lines) to depict the faithful not as dejected, cynical men who divorce themselves from faith out of some dystopic event or life, but people who cling to their faith despite the signs that they should not.

There are many other themes to explore, of course. I haven’t played as many games as I used to make additional comments.

I think I see what you mean. The norm I see nowadays for a hero (in a video game) is an individualistic, cynical person who goes against the beliefs of his time, or one that simply asserts his own will with no defined beliefs surrounding it. I definitely want to see more characters that actually cling to their faith, despite multiple challenges.

I guess Dragon Age kind of offers what you are looking for. The mythology of the game uses a lot of Christian symbolism in its world building. At first I thought it was just another straw-man argument to criticise the church, but it ended surprising me with the opposite. It’s also an awesome game, even if you don’t like RPGs.

I didn’t see that much Christianity in DAO- I personally despised the Chantry and whatever that former ‘nun’ team was named. Plus most of the game’s people believe that theire world has been abandoned by the game’s god.

Ummm… Fall Out 3 used a quote from revelation as a major plot point sort of. That’s really all I got.

Halo

The Chantry was an obvious surrogate for the Catholic Church and Andraste was a surrogate for Jesus. Heck even the quest to get Andraste’s ashes was a direct reference to the quest for the Holy Grail. Faith was a big theme of the game. What game were you playing? :rolleyes:

Don’t forget that the elves are supposed to be the Jews – they maintain their traditional religion even after Andraste saved them, and are forced to live in a ghetto and what not. :stuck_out_tongue:

Andraste seemed alot more like Joan of Arc- but in any event, yes they were similar to the Catholic Church but the Chantry was portrayed highly negatively IMO. And again, everyone was of the view that they had been abandoned by their god.
I suppose I desecrated the Holy Grail ><.

Xenosaga borrowed a lot from Dead Sea Scrolls and Gnostic writings. i know, not exactly Catholic. it was revealed that two of the characters was Yeshua and Mary Magdalene. although the weird part was there was a flashback to the 1st centure and Yeshua was shown among the crowd where Jesus is teaching. so it got me confused, i thought Yeshua was how Jesus was pronounced (or somewhat) in Aramaic. but the flashback showed he wasn’t Jesus, wasn’t even clear if he was an apostle or disciple, or just among the crowd

anyway, there may not be a connection at all. but a lot of symbols in the game borrows from Jewish Kabbalah, Gnosticism, and a little bit of Christianity

As was the normalization of homosexuality. The mimicry of Catholicism and Christianity served as an easy and obvious platform for criticizing absolute truths.

If you’re looking for a solid old school game, try Castlevania III (NES). Belmont starts out praying before a cross before setting out to tackle Death, Frankenstein, Dracula, and the gang.

Even better, enter the password “Help Me” before starting and you’ll begin with ten extra lives.

You don’t think the fact that Belmont has a vampire and a sorcerer helping him sort of dilutes the religious imagery of the game?

Don’t get me wrong, I love most of the Castlevania series. Had a great soundtrack, too.

Nope. Remember what Christ said about others attacking evil and how Satan’s house cannot stand against itself. And how do we know she wasn’t blessed? As for Alucard, well, the house divided thing and all that.

You know that’s pretty much an interesting argument to use in favor of having monsters (and even demons) as protagonists with (generally) virtuous morals that seem unlike them. :slight_smile:

Though *Portal *isn’t exactly a Catholic video game, I’ve come to like it’s suggestion that reckless scientific research and experimentation (especially with a reckless approach to artificial intelligence) without a firm moral compass inevitably leads to dehumanization and disaster.

Besides, who doesn’t like cake?

This thread got me interested in Castlevania again, so I re-beat the original NES one and I’m currently replaying Dracula’s Curse.

I find it interesting that Alucard, a half-vampire, sleeps in a coffin underneath a cross. Which makes him a Christian undead out to fight the forces of evil. What does he pray before he goes to sleep? “Jesus, Mary and Joseph, May I die again in peace with Thee?”

http://img638.imageshack.us/img638/6123/alucardk.png

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