A charming new video game from the folks who brought you the Left Behind book series is on the shelves right now, and well…if you don’t think radical, extremists have taken over the evangelical movement and are now its voice…please keep reading.
Liberal and progressive Christian groups say a new computer game in which players must either convert or kill non-Christians is the wrong gift to give this holiday season and that Wal-Mart, a major video game retailer, should yank it off its shelves.
The Campaign to Defend the Constitution and the Christian Alliance for Progress, two online political groups, plan to demand today that Wal-Mart dump Left Behind: Eternal Forces, a PC game inspired by a series of Christian novels that are hugely popular, especially with teens.
The series by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins is based on their interpretation of the Bible’s Book of Revelation and takes place after the Rapture, when Jesus has taken his people to heaven and left nonbelievers behind to face the Antichrist.
This is probably the best/worst/saddest part of this story/game/insanity:
Left Behind Games’ president, Jeffrey Frichner, says the game actually is pacifist because players lose “spirit points” every time they gun down nonbelievers rather than convert them. They can earn spirit points again by having their character pray.
“You are fighting a defensive battle in the game,” Frichner, whose previous company produced Bible software, said of combatting the Antichrist. “You are a sort of a freedom fighter.”
And yes, the retailer who has banned albums from Sheryl Crow, Nirvana and the Goo Goo Dolls, as well as books from authors like George Carlin, is not backing down from this fight. They’re going to keep the Left Behind game on the shelf, come hell or…er…wait…
A Wal-Mart spokeswoman said the retailer has no plans to pull Left Behind: Eternal Forces from any of the 200 of Wal-Mart’s 3,800 stores that offer the game, including just seven in California. The nearest are in Chico and Redding.
“We look at the community to see where it will sell,” said Tara Raddohl. “We have customers who are buying it and really haven’t received a lot of complaints about it from our customers at this time.”
Always low standards. Always.