5 Best Video Games (Used as Propaganda by Governments)

Categories: Gaming
Russians are starting to get a tad touchy about the way they are portrayed in video games, which seems weird because as far as I know they've never said boo about Vodka Drunkenski. Anyway, last year some Russian lawmakers pitched the idea of levying fines for distributing video games that painted Russians in a negative light or that allowed you to command fascist forces within them. Oleg Mikheyev, a Duma deputy from the A Just Russia party specifically took offense at Soldiers: Heroes of WWII and Company of Heroes 2 when he proposed his fine.

Another development from the sudden interest in their game clout comes from the Russian Military History Society, who is being prompted and funded by the Culture Ministry to produce more patriotic-themed war games as official releases. The first of these is said to debut this year, unless this whole thing in Crimea turns out to be the result of Russia finding out making video games is hard and deciding to just blow people up the old-fashioned way.

I'm simplifying this quite a bit, but in the 1970s, America sort of gave Japan the Senkaku Islands, a small series of uninhabited islands within a pretty close click to China and Taiwan that the Chinese government would really like to have back. Japan, does not want to give the Chinese government anything, and so there's this festering stew pot of anger over a string of tiny pieces of land where no one lives anyway.

One of the shots fired in this battle over the islands, metaphorically, is a game called Glorious Mission, yet another title inspired America's Army and backed by the People's Liberation Army. It's intended to prepare and simulate what a forceful taking of the islands might be like, and drew much criticism from outlets like The Blaze that were offended that the enemies were American soldiers. Apparently Glenn Beck's staff is unaware that America would in fact be the ones defending the islands if an invasion were to occur.

North Korea
Finally, there's those loveable little scamps in North Korea. They have not, to my knowledge, managed to create their own FPS to show off how cool they are. In fact, creating their own anything seems to be an issue, as evidenced in this propaganda video their government put together.

In it, America is shown to be under attack, and New York City having been bombed. Sharp-eyed gamers noticed that the footage looked a lot like it was from Call of Duty. That's because it was. The North Koreans can't even bomb us correctly in a video game. We literally have to do it for them. Remember what I said about the war of ideas? North Korea's version of that war has them deciding the instructions on a claymore were written on opposite day.

Jef has a new story, a tale of headless strippers and The Rolling Stones, available now in Broken Mirrors, Fractured Minds. You can also connect with him on Facebook.

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