201: See No Evil

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I read this and all I can say is Well said

closertorickman:
Also, I'd like to add that I think it's harsh to just all out call Germans in games Nazis. Yeah, sure, some were proud to have Swastikas on their helmets, and were happy to oppress the Jews, but to systemactially call ALL Germans Nazis wouldn't be fair. I've studied Nazi Germany for the past three years, and it's fair to say the amount of opposition was tremendous and that alot of the Germans were only 'Nazis' because it meant survival. At first, if you disagreed, you lost your job. Then you lost your home. Eventually, you'd lose your family and wind up in a concentration camp if you opposed the State. Kaiser Wilhelm said that Germany needed 'her place in the sun' and yeah, many Germans shared this nationaistic view, ESPECIALLY after the harsh terms of the Treay of Versailles was placed upon her, but to say that they were all Nazis and therefore racist is quite unfair in my opinion.
Of course, none of you have to agree, but that's just what I think :)

Yeah some germans tried to assasinate hitler to save their country from oppression all failed and the allies were just as bad they kept millions of germans in concentration camps for awhile afer the war not many made it back home.

ManiacRaccoon:

Flytch:

A pomgrom is a term used to describe the massacres of Jews that occured frequently in the middle ages.

Thank you. I've learned something for today. You see my point though right? How many people do you think know that when they pick up a copy of Assassin's Creed?

Very few of them, at least when people play WW2 games they know about the holocaust and other atrocities of the war.

Now why isn't there a video game where you play as a Native American fighting those evil pale-face Europeans?

The Author makes a good point, but governments and the ESRB would never allow a game depicting the events of a haulocaust, it's not the youth enjoying the slaughter of a race, it's the government deciding what should and shouldn't be remembered or seen.

darfvader:
don't worry israel will always remember the holocaust. its like passover we have the drinks and maza bread but wee all know its about escaping from tyranny. same thing bout purim or hanuka. We make a point of remembering each time we escaped oblivion. the problem isn't remembring the problem is EXISTING. if anyone thinks that antisemitisem is over well: you are either from the states and from a rich area at that and B never been an israeli abroad. I got stuff thrown at me and later beat up in spain, chased in germany and had to walk with effing armed escort while visitng the camps in poland. thats THE WESTERN COUNTRIES,the main problem are certain oil rich countries that use the blight of a people the pissed on and were stuck with (and ill admit that israel is not effective at solving the palestinian problem) as a an excuse to again try and wipe us out.

so no in every generation we face this the holocaust won't be forgotten. LETS JUST HOPE IT WON"T BE REPEATED.

Before I make any further point I would like to say as someone of Jewish origin but has no religious views that I think your argument is misinformed although I appreciate your honesty over the Palestinian situation. Yes anti-Semitism is still a problem for Jews, as anti-Islamic behaviour is for Muslims and anti-Creationism is for those people who believe in evolution. But in many cases Israelis who are attacked are attacked over being Israeli as opposed to being Jewish. I remember on my visit to the death-camps (my grandfather was among the British soldiers who discovered such places and so it's important to the family that we go and see it)I saw barbaric things: the collections of shoes, glasses, hair, lampshades. It was sick. But I also saw large groups on Israelis touring, waving their flags and banners. That is also not on as the image of the Israeli flag have negative connotations for many people, given the behaviour of their government and armed forces towards Palestinians who are experiencing a less industrialised and smaller-scale but very similar system of oppression that was visited on the European Jews. I think that is the key issue here.

Moving on to the game topic (sorry to blacken the mood but it's something I need to get off my chest as I feel strongly about it) I support this article as it mirrors my own feelings at a certain point when I was reviewing my shelf and noting how many WWII games there were. It's a complicated problem. In these days where discriminatory behaviour is a minefield issue for everyone, a concrete form of bad guy is necessary and seeing as no one can protest against the portrayal of Nazis without removing the front lobes of their brain or being an ignorant troll, they make ideal enemies. WWII was a war that was universally supported by the populaces of the triumphant nations which cannot be said for any war since. Wars are never simple bad and good which is why I think more sci-fi shooters need to be made because at least then when you're dealing with aliens their moral scale is removed from ours. Some subjects are too touchy, Vietnam shooters never made it the same way as WWII ones.

But the whole repeated set-pieces for WWII games is relentlessly biased. I remember the first level in CoD2 where after the tutorial you are present as a Wehrmacht soldier is 'persuaded' into talking and you are dispatched to rain down some hot lead in the name of Mother Russia; if you wait around the Commissar shoots the captured soldier in the head. The indications made there ignore some key facts about the suffering in Russia while the Allies (represented by Americans in most games, yes everyone says this all the time because it is sodding TRUE!) were deliberating on if it made tactical sense to open up the Western Front before the Nazis had been beaten in the East. That was a colossal dick move that is always hushed up because history is always written by the winners because they can hide their nasties by showing the loser's nasties.

Representing the Holocaust in game format would be tricky, in an action-soaked adrenaline-pumping shooter, developers want to gloss over the bits that would get sticky, like ALL MEDIA FORMS. But in a game following the lines of say ArmA or OpFlash where realism is praised, such a level might work.

In the end, we must do our best to learn about and honour those who died in one of the most horrendous struggles that has ever been dramatised by game media, and we must try not to let the ignorant "them and us" situations that ever politician, power-broker and fool try to put us into.
Tolerate, Understand, and Compromise my friends, Wolfshrimp out

I don't believe that any game can address these issues without coming across as preachy. People play games to have fun, not to be lectured about the nature of good and evil, especially a historical good and evil. That's just painfully awkward.

Imagine a game where a person participates in the Babi Yar Massacre, or executes Polish officers in the Katyn forest, or rounds up 'Comfort Women' for the pleasure of Japanese soldiers. The notion is grotesque, but without such involvement, how do you give the full impact of these terrible events?

Lord_Gremlin:
"Russia's role was questionable but necessary"
Russia WON that war, you retard! Without Russia UK would have been doomed. And United States actually played no role at all in this war.

Yeah, I suppose you shouldn't look towards things like Tarawa, Iwo Jima, Midway, Coral Sea, or any other battles fought after the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941.

I would definitively welcome a historical correct game that shows that msot americans ahven't shot once in ww2 or that the nazis were a minority...but i still enjoy the usal ww2 games.
Only the german versions of those games offend me.

CantFaketheFunk:

It sure did. This is our Best Of issue :)

How many times have you "had" to say that this week? I mean, you said that to another one who hadn't noticed the "Best Of" issue on another thread, and doesn't it get tiresome to explain that to people?

On topic, I think it would be a very "nice" idea for a level in a WWII game if you would storm a concentration camp and would have to hurry to stop the last gassing before it's too late, or something similar. It would have quite an effect if it was done "right"...

Veylon:
I don't believe that any game can address these issues without coming across as preachy. People play games to have fun, not to be lectured about the nature of good and evil, especially a historical good and evil. That's just painfully awkward.

Imagine a game where a person participates in the Babi Yar Massacre, or executes Polish officers in the Katyn forest.

My good friend's grandfather is a Pole and quieted up knowing that they made a game glorifying the Soviets.

I don't think nazi zombies was put in world at war to demonize the germans...it was there because the nazis were on of the enemies in the game and they wanted a zombie mode.

And saying U.S took little part in the war is disrespecting the thousands of U.S soldiers who died.

Lord_Gremlin:
"Russia's role was questionable but necessary"
Russia WON that war, you retard! Without Russia UK would have been doomed. And United States actually played no role at all in this war.

I wouldn't say completaly correct there. Russia was invaded by the Germans during WW2 but one of the main things that prevented Germany from winning was how unprepered they were, most dying from the cold and cold related illnesses. If The whole of the German force was sent To russia they may have of taken over. Infact the main reason why everything went tits up was because the forces where split with half sent to france the other half sent to Russia. Russia beat them back like a fly on a window. Russia did push the german forces back, but in no way did russia directly help the UK, maby indirectly but not Directly. The US did take part in WW2 but only in the last few mounths of the war and, just as we know it took all the credit for winning the war dispite not being effected at all by it in any way shape or form. Infact most of the army was still in america and a only a few squads of paratroopers where sent but never the less America still took part. End correction rant.

Yes i agree with the artical in question here grately although I do beleive that either they start making games from both perspectives/ historicaly correct or stop making them. Overall I would go for the third option becuase the only knew thing in WW2 simulator games is how many chuncks you can blow the nazi into. and

GoldenRaz:

CantFaketheFunk:

It sure did. This is our Best Of issue :)

How many times have you "had" to say that this week? I mean, you said that to another one who hadn't noticed the "Best Of" issue on another thread, and doesn't it get tiresome to explain that to people?

On topic, I think it would be a very "nice" idea for a level in a WWII game if you would storm a concentration camp and would have to hurry to stop the last gassing before it's too late, or something similar. It would have quite an effect if it was done "right"...

Too true, maby they could be secretaly educational as well -.-

I don't think that any developer will be able to make a mission that takes you into a concentration camp. It'd either be shot down by the ratings boards, or seen as obscene by a huge number of people, myself included. I don't think that videogames have evolved to the point where they can comment on such unimaginable, incomprehensible events like the Shoah.

This is a pretty fantastic article. I wonder, though, about one thing. From what I've always heard and read, Allied soldiers had no idea the concentration camps existed until the war had been won, right? Then the tanks rolled into the camps, and the soldiers were generally shocked to discover the prisoners and their condition.

I wonder if it wouldn't be a little dishonest to portray the holocaust any differently, at least where the battles are concerned.

This isn't to say that the subject couldn't be brought up, or anything, though. Rather, I'm talking about how I can understand why, for instance, the Call of Duty Games don't have you fighting nazis at Auschwitz.

Lord_Gremlin:
"Russia's role was questionable but necessary"
Russia WON that war, you retard! Without Russia UK would have been doomed. And United States actually played no role at all in this war.

the problem with that statement is that until the US got in the war Germany was expanding

that is a hard fact and nothing you can say changes it while i admit without U.S.S.R. Germany would have won but they got much support and supplys from other places and yes they did kill most nazis however England and America did help more than what people give them credit for however the same can be sayed about russia to

and by the way nazi zombies was put in to battle left 4 dead not to demonize them

Russia won the war? Which war? Up until mid '41, they were practically an Axis power, supplying oil and food to prop up the Nazi regime. That was Stalin's thought on how to "win the war."

When Hitler invaded the Soviet Union, millions of Soviet soldiers and tens of millions of citizens perished under Nazi rule. The landscape was devastated by scorched earth policies, military requisitions, genocide, and random destruction. Tens of thousands of villages were wiped off the map, Russian industry destroyed or relocated, total deaths were ~20 million. That's what winning looks like?

The only major power to come out of World War II in something like decent shape was the USA. The U.K. was smashed up and lost it's empire. Germany and Japan were burned to the ground, and the Soviet Union was crippled for a generation. No question that the Soviets did the majority of the fighting against the Nazis (by something like 4:1), but they didn't "win" anything but a bunch of puppets to prop up.

As for talking about a war without it, consider that Hitler invaded the Soviet Union precisely to bring Britain to it's knees. Without that invasion, World War II might have dragged on for quite a long time, especially if Pearl Harbor still happened and the US joined the fight. Without the Eastern Front, it's difficult to see how the Nazis could've been outright defeated, aside from Atom Bombs. Some sort of compromise might've had to be hammered out. Maybe a lot of human suffering would've been avoided.

On the flipside, had Hitler actually taken Moscow and Stalingrad, killed Stalin, and won that war, well, then what? No one, maybe not even Hitler, has any idea what would've happened then. Iran through the Caucasus? To India across Afghanistan? Try to shake hands with Japan in China? Add in the USA to this picture and World War II is even longer and uglier than it was in real life.

Interesting article... but I don't fully agree with it. Games are primarily entertainment (with the possible exception of educational games) and you shouldn't rely on entertainment to educate people. That's what school is for. Education is definitely a secondary objective in a game, if that, no matter how "realistic" a game is supposed to be. Secondly, a World War II FPS is not in a good position to educate about non combat issues. They are tactical in nature, presenting you with an objective and letting you fight through to achieve it. You're enemies are defined, no choices involved and then it's just "kill" or be "killed". In any event, there was little to no combat around concentration camps (even in liberating them, which my father participated in (he's a WWII combat vet). You could include a "walk through" level of a camp but it won't bring the horror across any more than a FPS can bring across the emotional impact of combat (unless you've been there already). Other game perspectives (RTS etc.) would simpy reduce the mass murder of the Holocaust to statistics. Statistics don't have the impact needed.

An educational FP perspective adventure type game of the Holocaust experience might be useful... just don't expect anyone to buy it or enjoy the experience. Sounds like a school assignment to me (I'm a teacher).

As for who won the war -- it took more than one nation. Anyone saying either the US or USSR wasn't necessary is, well, uneducated (to be polite). Yes, the Soviets took the bulk of the casualties -- 16 million military dead (the rest were civilians) and tied up 2/3 of the German army. On the other hand the US outproduced the rest of the participants combined (both sides) in war goods, shipping vast quantities of military equipment to all the Allies (including the Soviet Union). The US was also the primary combatant in the Pacific war (I'm not forgetting the Australians, New Zealanders, British, Indians, Chinese, etc.) against the Japanese. US (and western military) casualties were lower than the Soviets, but German losses on the Western front and Japanese losses in the Pacific pretty much matched up to German casualties on the Eastern front. In short the Soviets tied up the bulk of German forces and ground their way to Germany suffering horribly in the process for 4 years while the US (and the Western Allies) were fortunate enough to strike hammer blows at the enemy without playing target for as sustained a time as the Soviets. The Germans killed 16 Soviets for every man they lost on the Eastern front IIRC, the kill ration in the West ran in the Allied favor. That has to do with situation, training, equipment, tactics and a host of issues. The sacrifices made by all the Allied nations were necessary to victory.

die4769:
The Author makes a good point, but governments and the ESRB would never allow a game depicting the events of a haulocaust, it's not the youth enjoying the slaughter of a race, it's the government deciding what should and shouldn't be remembered or seen.

So very true. Besides I, and I guess most people, play games for entertainment, visiting prison camps and generally drama generating things of such a magnitude have no place in video-games.

My solution to the WW2 FPS is simple: STOP making them. As I said before what we do through these videogames depicting WW2 is celebrating one of the worst moments of human kind. Why would we do that ?!

The trap I see most people these days fall into is that the idealized images of the US, UK and Russia are taken as fact. Well boys and girls the soldiers of these countries did abominable acts too and lots of.

Very good article by the way.

This is quite true but I hardly think of Call of Duty 4 as a good example of a thought-provoking game.

it's cos if they so much as mention it, mothers every where will be complaining that 8 year old timmy asked her about the holocaust.

A proper, cutting holocaust game would be something else...
If it were allowed to be published, it would be a must have - totally unique...

This is I think the appeal of WW2 game have dulled for me, as well as it always is the same missions against the same enemy with the same freaking guns. WW2 was such more complicated then "NAZIS ARE BAD! WE KILL NAZIS!" but rarely have I ever seen it betrayed otherwise in games. Why can't we have Shinler's Lists in our medium? Why must we endlessly kill Nazi's without exploring why we were killing them? Why can't games give us the sickening feeling of walking into a death camp only to find corpses and people that look like them? I was truely wondering this to only find that games that try to do this are blocked and banned.

Have you ever heard of "Immagination is the Only Escape"? It is an upcoming game that is about a young Jewish boy caught up in the holocaust as he adventures (in what I believe, again this game has yet to see shelves) through the world of his mind and the real world trying to get back to his mother after she got him smuggled away to save his life. It looked to be some of the deepest and most complex story telling about WW2 in gaming. Unfortonatly, Nintendo of America won't publish it. They are blocking it from appearing in America and the only people that will be getting it will be those gamers in Europe. Yet they let Call of duty: WaW onto their wii without question (even if it was censored quite a bit).

I truelly hope that game sees the light of day and I get to play it just to see a game set in WW2 that doesn't involve me basted through more waves of Nazi's.

There are many factors of World War II that need to be in video games. History for one, if games truly are to be good deep and meaningful they need to have reason. Many WWII games have you mow down National Socialist Germans by the truck load, yet how many Russians or Chinese do you fight(In WWII games)...none. We are leaving out key parts in history. We need to have different perspectives of the War. Hell get a Wehrmacht soldier's perspective in Stalingrad to get a better understanding of the people you kill by the truckloads. Or another horrifying yet needs to be done perspective of a Minority in a Concentration Camp.

Not G. Ivingname:
I truelly hope that game sees the light of day andI get to play it just to see a game set in WW2 that doesn't involve me basted through more waves of Nazi's.

As do I my friend then we can learn

I have some issues with this article...

First of all, it throws nazism in with racial and cultural groups such as black and japanese. Nazism is first and foremost a political movement, and while Hitler may have had a soft spot for aryans, anyone should be able to figure out that his armies were not composed solely of blue-eyed blondes. The image for the article only underlines this (wrong) point.

Secondly, I should think this was obvious, but it's mentioned nowhere in the article: 99% of all WW2 games are produced, developed and tested by Americans. Americans have a very different relation to WWII than Europeans. While they fought against the germans, their main enemy was the Japanese, and Pearl Harbor will always be more important to most Americans than any other event in that war (Kurt Vonnegut is a notable exception). Nazis are just another stereotype evil to Americans, because they don't know (or care) about the events that lead up to the war.

Actually, a game that represents some of the horrors of the Holocaust already exists, well, technically. It was a point and click adventure game based off of Harlan Ellison's short story "I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream". In it, 5 people are forced through traumatic psychodramas invented by a maniacal AI as a way to torture them.
One of the 5 playable characters is an ex Nazi scientist named Nimdok who is greatly sorry for what he has done, so the AI forces him into a concentration camp where he must relive the horrors he committed. The player can either do exactly as the AI wishes and continue the experiments on innocent lives, or take a redemptive path instead, in an attempt to atone for the sins he committed.
OT: Interesting article, although I don't think the Holocaust will ever be forgotten. The Crusades happenned hundreds and hundreds of years ago, and we haven't forgotten about that.
At this point in time, video games aren't a good way to expose the horrors of WWII. They already get a bad enough reputation, and if people assumed that Bulletstorm would turn people into rapists, only God knows what would happen if the Holocaust was featured in a big AAA title. When games get more respect from the non-gamer masses, then we can put stuff like that in games.
The only part of your article that I disagreed on was the last part. Fighting Mecha-Hitler will always be fun.

Bigsmith:

Lord_Gremlin:
"Russia's role was questionable but necessary"
Russia WON that war, you retard! Without Russia UK would have been doomed. And United States actually played no role at all in this war.

I wouldn't say completaly correct there. Russia was invaded by the Germans during WW2 but one of the main things that prevented Germany from winning was how unprepered they were, most dying from the cold and cold related illnesses. If The whole of the German force was sent To russia they may have of taken over. Infact the main reason why everything went tits up was because the forces where split with half sent to france the other half sent to Russia. Russia beat them back like a fly on a window. Russia did push the german forces back, but in no way did russia directly help the UK, maby indirectly but not Directly. The US did take part in WW2 but only in the last few mounths of the war and, just as we know it took all the credit for winning the war dispite not being effected at all by it in any way shape or form. Infact most of the army was still in america and a only a few squads of paratroopers where sent but never the less America still took part. End correction rant.

Yes i agree with the artical in question here grately although I do beleive that either they start making games from both perspectives/ historicaly correct or stop making them. Overall I would go for the third option becuase the only knew thing in WW2 simulator games is how many chuncks you can blow the nazi into. and

183,588 American soldiers died in the European front during WWII. This is significantly more than "only a few squads of paratroopers". This is only deaths too not total involved. Please have facts straight before commenting, although you were correcting a even more inaccurate claim.

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