#1 Edited by SpaceInsomniac (3885 posts) -

There will probably be end-game spoilers in this thread, and there are mid-game spoilers in this first post. You have been warned.

Anyhow, there was a thread four or five days ago from a conservative forum member who was worried that this game might beat him over the head with an anti-conservative / republican / religious message, so when I heard about this story, I thought it might make for an interesting read.

It turned out to be much more objective and well-written than what I expected it to be, which was a throwback to the Mass Effect sex simulator story that Fox News pulled out of their ass several years ago. Although it did manage to confuse some early BioShock Infinite footage that didn't end up in the game for actual game content, I'd have to say that's a fairly forgivable mistake. There are a couple of other small issues that I had with the article, but nothing too big.

Here are some excerpts:

http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2013/03/29/bioshock-infinite-the-video-game-that-lets-you-shoot-robo-george-washington-should-you-be-worried/

Moreover, while Columbia is rabidly anti-worker and institutionally racist, there’s not much concern with capitalism or freedom evinced by its residents or leaders, which sets them entirely apart from the Tea Party movement. In fact, Columbia’s economic system is portrayed as more feudal than capitalist. Propaganda videos inside a gun manufacturers’ factory liken company owners to lions, and workers to oxen, while completely discouraging the idea of upward mobility which forms the basis of capitalism.

So is Bioshock Infinite anti-Tea Party? No. If anything, given that it takes place in 1912, it’s much more an attack on the sort of jingoistic sentiments that motivated Americans at the turn of the 20th century, and that caused writers such as Sinclair Lewis to openly fret about America itself going fascist. Its Christian and Founders-oriented iconography is not meant to reflect the evils of Christianity or the founders, but rather how easily the concepts advanced by Christianity and the Founders can be perverted in the service of authoritarianism.

There is no evidence to suggest that the people involved in making Bioshock Infinite held Marxist ideas. In fact, it would be out of character for the series if Marxists worked on this franchise at all, given its overwhelming concern with criticizing political extremism. Moreover, the Vox Populi are depicted using quasi-Marxist iconography, and given that they are portrayed as antagonists in the game, any Marxists who worked on the project would have had to bite their tongues.

Similarly, while it’s quite possible that atheists worked on the game, Ken Levine, the game’s creator, has been relatively quiet about his religious affiliation, and doesn’t appear to consider it a major ax to grind. Levine’s willingness to tone down elements of the game that offended his Christian employees also suggests that he had no explicit agenda to attack religion.

So worry not, conservative and religious members of Giant Bomb. BioShock Infinite has earned at least one conservative guy's seal of approval.

#2 Edited by The_Laughing_Man (13629 posts) -

I stopped reading after I saw in big letters.

IS THE VIDEO GAME BEING CALLED THE ‘BEST GAME OF THE YEAR’ ANTI-AMERICAN AND ANTI-CONSERVATIVE?

#3 Posted by joshthebear (2700 posts) -

Ugh, just ugh.

#4 Posted by SlashDance (1841 posts) -

"it’s quite possible that atheists worked on the game"

HAHA. Yeah... quite possible indeed.

#5 Posted by mrfluke (5317 posts) -

I stopped reading after I saw in big letters.

IS THE VIDEO GAME BEING CALLED THE ‘BEST GAME OF THE YEAR’ ANTI-AMERICAN AND ANTI-CONSERVATIVE?

#6 Posted by RoyaleWifCheese (559 posts) -

Unusually thoughtful interpretation of the game for a conservative website.

#7 Edited by JasonR86 (9763 posts) -

Well, Hell's frozen over. I agree with something that was written on Glen Beck's site.

EDIT: I should say, I agree with the overall conclusion that Bioshock Infinite isn't anti-conservative or anti-religion.

#8 Edited by SpaceInsomniac (3885 posts) -

I stopped reading after I saw in big letters.

IS THE VIDEO GAME BEING CALLED THE ‘BEST GAME OF THE YEAR’ ANTI-AMERICAN AND ANTI-CONSERVATIVE?

The URL title is much more fun:

/bioshock-infinite-the-video-game-that-lets-you-shoot-robo-george-washington-should-you-be-worried

"it’s quite possible that atheists worked on the game"

HAHA. Yeah... quite possible indeed.

One might even say probable.

#9 Posted by golguin (4012 posts) -

I read it and it isn't really bad.

#10 Posted by TheManWithNoPlan (5903 posts) -

I went in wincing and came out rather satisfied. I thought I was going to read an article where the writer played the game for 15 minutes and rage quit. I always get an uneasy feeling when the mainstream starts talking about video games. They usually don't have any context for the game they're currently talking about and just go on a rant about how games are evil. Remember Sexbox, ughh. I loved the game and I'm glad that the writer took time to play it all the way through before talking about the game's content. That headline isn't doing anyone any favors though.....Sigh.

#11 Edited by Milkman (17201 posts) -

I, for one, am much more interested in the comments.

"This game is openly asserting against whites, the founders and america. If you idiots put aside your values for a game, what good are you?"

"Im supr9ised how many conservatives here are for this, if you actually played the game you would be horrified. THIS IS NOTHING LIKE THE OTHER TWO BIOSHOCKS"

"I played this game yesterday and I thought the exact samew thing. It completeley mocks thre founders and the American core. The game starts with having to smash police officers skulls. Then you find all of them are quasi religious fanatics who worship the founders and demonize Lincoln. Obvious propaganda for communism. If you let this slide your kids are lost"

"I’m a huge game ethusiast and try to pride myself on playing the hardest games out there and beat them."

"It is that kind of thinking that allows our kids to be brain washed, Send your kid to Harvard to finish him off. If my 14 year old son wants to play it, I will talk to him first so he knows to notice the crap. He will be better off in life if he learns to keep an eye out for crap like this."

"The leftist media can hype Bio-shock 3 all they want but it’s a non-starter with the true game community. I can’t wait not to buy it personally."

"Fact is you can truely tell how bad a game is by the amount of commericals they use to hype it. Really greta games get little hype from the media and rely on gamers to advertise on game blogger sites. Judging by the shear volume of advertisements for BS INFINITE(FITTING TITLE) IT MUST BE AWFUL."

#12 Posted by JasonR86 (9763 posts) -

@milkman said:

I, for one, am much more interested in the comments.

"This game is openly asserting against whites, the founders and america. If you idiots put aside your values for a game, what good are you?"

"Im supr9ised how many conservatives here are for this, if you actually played the game you would be horrified. THIS IS NOTHING LIKE THE OTHER TWO BIOSHOCKS"

"I played this game yesterday and I thought the exact samew thing. It completeley mocks thre founders and the American core. The game starts with having to smash police officers skulls. Then you find all of them are quasi religious fanatics who worship the founders and demonize Lincoln. Obvious propaganda for communism. If you let this slide your kids are lost"

"I’m a huge game ethusiast and try to pride myself on playing the hardest games out there and beat them."

"It is that kind of thinking that allows our kids to be brain washed, Send your kid to Harvard to finish him off. If my 14 year old son wants to play it, I will talk to him first so he knows to notice the crap. He will be better off in life if he learns to keep an eye out for crap like this."

"The leftist media can hype Bio-shock 3 all they want but it’s a non-starter with the true game community. I can’t wait not to buy it personally."

"Fact is you can truely tell how bad a game is by the amount of commericals they use to hype it. Really greta games get little hype from the media and rely on gamers to advertise on game blogger sites. Judging by the shear volume of advertisements for BS INFINITE(FITTING TITLE) IT MUST BE AWFUL."

God. They're making Glen Beck look like the sane one. Fucking shit.

#13 Posted by Aurelito (721 posts) -

I'm not even American but I hate American neo-cons more than the fucking lunatics who rule my own country.

#14 Edited by SpaceInsomniac (3885 posts) -

@milkman said:

I, for one, am much more interested in the comments.

But only one particular type of comment. The majority of the comments seemed quite rational, which I found even more surprising than the article itself.

Then again, I'm not denying that you occasionally do get a gem like this:

Next they will make a Be gay Game showing how to suck a penis this is what Liberals and progressives are occupied with

#15 Posted by Milkman (17201 posts) -
#16 Edited by Intro (1211 posts) -

"Fact is you can truely tell how bad a game is by the amount of commericals they use to hype it. Really greta games get little hype from the media and rely on gamers to advertise on game blogger sites. Judging by the shear volume of advertisements for BS INFINITE(FITTING TITLE) IT MUST BE AWFUL."

This person is what you call stupid. No excuses. Yeah, all the best games don't use marketing, that technique is used just to waste money. If I had a business I would never advertise for it, that's just silly, only bad companies advertise...

"It is that kind of thinking that allows our kids to be brain washed, Send your kid to Harvard to finish him off. If my 14 year old son wants to play it, I will talk to him first so he knows to notice the crap. He will be better off in life if he learns to keep an eye out for crap like this."

I could go on for hours but im sure everyone here sees the stupidity in that comment as well, so there's no need. Also, I love how that person didn't mention about talking to their 14 year old about shooting thousands of people and cutting heads off. Let's worry about brainwashing them with religion and politics.

EDIT: Saw this guy also wrote something in another story saying how god doesn't like gay marriage. I'm sorry but I can't take those people seriously.

#17 Posted by JasonR86 (9763 posts) -

Next they will make a Be gay Game showing how to suck a penis this is what Liberals and progressives are occupied with

I think he's just writing his own erotic literature and hiding it behind feigned rage. I bet he wrote that with his pants and shirt off rubbing his nipples.

#18 Edited by MariachiMacabre (7099 posts) -

@jasonr86 said:

@spaceinsomniac said:

Next they will make a Be gay Game showing how to suck a penis this is what Liberals and progressives are occupied with

I think he's just writing his own erotic literature and hiding it behind feigned rage. I bet he wrote that with his pants and shirt off rubbing his nipples.

That was probably Glenn Beck himself. Dude's crazy enough that I wouldn't put it past him to have a bunch of dummy accounts on his own site.

#19 Edited by BabyChooChoo (4743 posts) -

The person who wrote that article seems pretty intelligent, rational, and well-spoken. The people in the comments section do not.

#20 Edited by Subjugation (4734 posts) -

@golguin said:

I read it and it isn't really bad.

I bet 90% of the people posting in here didn't. Just time for another annoying "lul Faux News!" train. Reminder: Every organization has idiots. Ed Schultz anyone?

#21 Edited by SpaceInsomniac (3885 posts) -

@jasonr86 said:

@spaceinsomniac said:

Next they will make a Be gay Game showing how to suck a penis this is what Liberals and progressives are occupied with

I think he's just writing his own erotic literature and hiding it behind feigned rage. I bet he wrote that with his pants and shirt off rubbing his nipples.

It's really creepy looking how you unintentionally cut off the part where I say that was a crazy-ass comment on the article that I linked to.

No, fellow Giant Bomb members who might see this trimmed quote tree and think otherwise, I do not believe liberals and progressives are secretly plotting to develop a gay instructional penis sucking game.

#22 Posted by MariachiMacabre (7099 posts) -

@golguin said:

I read it and it isn't really bad.

I bet 90% of the people posting in here didn't. Just time for another annoying "lul Faux News!" train. Reminder: Every organization has idiots. Ed Schultz anyone?

Glenn Beck no longer works for Fox News. Also, Ed Schultz may be a blowhard but at least he never said the ocean tide is an unexplainable mystery. And Fox News continues to allow bigots like Ann Coulter to promote their bigotry on the air. I'm not gonna turn this into a thread bashing on Fox but let's get real here. Fox has more than it's fair share of idiots. And especially more than the other news organizations.

#23 Edited by JasonR86 (9763 posts) -

@jasonr86 said:

@spaceinsomniac said:

Next they will make a Be gay Game showing how to suck a penis this is what Liberals and progressives are occupied with

I think he's just writing his own erotic literature and hiding it behind feigned rage. I bet he wrote that with his pants and shirt off rubbing his nipples.

It's really creepy looking how you unintentionally cut off the part where I say that was a crazy-ass comment on the article that I linked to.

No, fellow Giant Bomb members who might see this trimmed quote tree and think otherwise, I do not believe liberals and progressives are secretly plotting to develop a gay instructional penis sucking game.

Oh. Oops. Sorry dude, I didn't even think about how that looked.

#24 Edited by Subjugation (4734 posts) -

@subjugation said:

@golguin said:

I read it and it isn't really bad.

I bet 90% of the people posting in here didn't. Just time for another annoying "lul Faux News!" train. Reminder: Every organization has idiots. Ed Schultz anyone?

Glenn Beck no longer works for Fox News. Also, Ed Schultz may be a blowhard but at least he never said the ocean tide is an unexplainable mystery. And Fox News continues to allow bigots like Ann Coulter to promote their bigotry on the air. I'm not gonna turn this into a thread bashing on Fox but let's get real here. Fox has more than it's fair share of idiots. And especially more than the other news organizations.

I know he doesn't work for them anymore, but that doesn't stop people from making the association. My entire point is that I'm able to acknowledge that every side, every organization has extreme personalities. I distinctly remember Lawrence O'Donnell making some pretty disgusting remarks about Mormons a while ago that caused a stir. For whatever reason the majority of people on here prefer to live in a vacuum and pretend that isn't the case, probably because most people on here of a liberal disposition (Before anyone gets defensive, it's just an observation). It's just really annoying and childish and the reason I normally avoid threads like these.

Anyway, I agree, let's not turn this into that thread.

#25 Edited by doosmacleod (189 posts) -
@jasonr86 said:

@spaceinsomniac said:

@jasonr86 said:

@spaceinsomniac said:

Next they will make a Be gay Game showing how to suck a penis this is what Liberals and progressives are occupied with

I think he's just writing his own erotic literature and hiding it behind feigned rage. I bet he wrote that with his pants and shirt off rubbing his nipples.

It's really creepy looking how you unintentionally cut off the part where I say that was a crazy-ass comment on the article that I linked to.

No, fellow Giant Bomb members who might see this trimmed quote tree and think otherwise, I do not believe liberals and progressives are secretly plotting to develop a gay instructional penis sucking game.

Oh. Oops. Sorry dude, I didn't even think about how that looked.

All that aside, Dong Hero seems like it would be an easy S-Rank.

Of course, then you'd get all of the professionals telling you to GET A REAL PENIS!

The cycle continues.

#26 Posted by Chaser324 (6716 posts) -

I certainly don't agree with every point made in the article, but it's definitely a more well reasoned response than I would've anticipated. Although, I will say that I'm not a huge fan of the tinge of McCarthyism and anti-atheism that did make it in there.

Moderator
#27 Posted by TheManWithNoPlan (5903 posts) -

For a lot of people, games aren't something they think should deal with these kinds of matters. A lot of people think games are still for kids.When a game start becoming about a social commentary or asks us to think about an aspect of our humanity, some just see that as an attack. There were definitely some reasonable people in those comments and I was surprised by how many actual gamers were there.

#28 Posted by ArbitraryWater (12005 posts) -

Bioshock Infinite: Even crazy neo-cons too crazy for Fox News think that it's ok!

#29 Posted by BaneFireLord (2967 posts) -

Well, whaddya know...I agree with something associated with Glenn Beck. The backdrops of Bioshock games seem to me to be criticisms of zealotry and what the consequences can be if beliefs are taken to their extremes, rather than actual attacks on the ideologies themselves, which I can wholeheartedly get behind.

Oh, and @doosmacleod: http://5secondfilms.com/watch/rock_band_groupie_edition

#30 Edited by EXTomar (4922 posts) -

Meh, no group would claim they cling to idolatry and fanaticism while still using idolatry and fanaticism. I'm not saying that Bioshock Infinite is a shot at neo-cons but it is not about whether or not the game pokes at them but they fail to realize how easy it was for the major antagonists to assume control by wrapping themselves in "high authority" to justify doing horrific things. That is something they should keep in mind when their leaders are whipping them into a frenzy over this or that.

#31 Edited by Snail (8648 posts) -

The Tea Party and the Republican Party are still fueled in several ways by a spirit of American exceptionalism, which is heavily criticized in the game. If one doesn't see that, it's probably by deliberately trying not to.

#32 Posted by LackingSaint (1849 posts) -

Not to say Bioshock: Infinite is free of political criticism; I responded to some asshole on twitter who messaged Levine saying he should kill himself, citing his "reactionary bias" based on the fact that the violent revolution of the Vox Populi is portrayed as ultimately negative. Their argument mostly consisted of calling me an idiot and a fanboy, but it saddens me that people act and think in that way.

#33 Posted by laserbolts (5352 posts) -

Dont care best game to come out in years.

#34 Posted by SpaceInsomniac (3885 posts) -

@snail said:

The Tea Party and the Republican Party are still fueled in several ways by a spirit of American exceptionalism, which is heavily criticized in the game. If one doesn't see that, it's probably by deliberately trying not to.

I think you can easily make the argument that the game isn't criticizing American exceptionalism, so much as extremism in any form, be it coming from a place of patriotism, religion, or even rebellion. Aside from that, I agree with this statement as well:

If anything, given that it takes place in 1912, it’s much more an attack on the sort of jingoistic sentiments that motivated Americans at the turn of the 20th century, and that caused writers such as Sinclair Lewis to openly fret about America itself going fascist.

Jingoism seems much more fitting as the true subject of the game. Your own wikipedia link suggests that American exceptionalism "is not a notion that the United States is quantitatively better than other countries" while jingoism is exactly that.

#35 Posted by ArtisanBreads (3972 posts) -

Ugh, just ugh.

It's a pretty well thought out argument, regardless of if you want to read it.

I agree as far as what the game is tackling politically.

Not to say Bioshock: Infinite is free of political criticism; I responded to some asshole on twitter who messaged Levine saying he should kill himself, citing his "reactionary bias" based on the fact that the violent revolution of the Vox Populi is portrayed as ultimately negative. Their argument mostly consisted of calling me an idiot and a fanboy, but it saddens me that people act and think in that way.

To me, the Vox rebellion just showed that revolutions are really ugly, in a realistic way (which is often ignored in media). Just look at the French Revolution for an easy example of how much ugliness can come from the overthrow of a poor system.

#36 Posted by notdavid (841 posts) -

Dude. Read the comments if you think The Blaze is some kind of bastion for moderate conservatism.

#37 Edited by jakob187 (21732 posts) -

The article is well-written and thoughtfully handled in the majority of its aspects. It's nice to see that something on Glenn Beck's website isn't completely trash and that someone actually has a brain and knows how to use it over there.

With that said, the only issue that I had was the tone they used when talking about gaming press. Not only did they basically look unfavorably upon gaming press, but they also decided that they are generally more liberal? Really? A form of press that covers shit involving a ton of guns and who constantly speak out about how there is no direct correlation between violence in games and violence in real life...is liberal? If anything, I think the gaming press has usually shown themselves falling somewhere in the middle. Yeah, there are some members that proudly fly their flag (Gary Whitta is a die-hard Democrat), but nonetheless, that just felt like a lot of discrediting and slights to people that genuinely care about the medium they work in.

#38 Posted by President_Barackbar (3472 posts) -

@jakob187: Yeah, there's still a weird sentiment within a lot of conservative camps that anything that doesn't come out of a conservative outlet is immediately biased to the left. It gets a little ridiculous sometimes.

#39 Edited by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

Well, whaddya know...I agree with something associated with Glenn Beck. The backdrops of Bioshock games seem to me to be criticisms of zealotry and what the consequences can be if beliefs are taken to their extremes, rather than actual attacks on the ideologies themselves, which I can wholeheartedly get behind.

Oh, and @doosmacleod: http://5secondfilms.com/watch/rock_band_groupie_edition

O_o

I think that interpretation is missing something.

The game is very clearly making commentary on ACTUAL conservative ideology in place RIGHT NOW. Not just fantasy land conservatism that "could be if they were zealots."

The part at the very beginning, where the founders are praying to the statues of the founding fathers is a total dig at the way the tea party and associated groups talk about how holy the founding fathers of the country were and how we need to reclaim that history.

#40 Posted by coakroach (2492 posts) -

no explicit agenda to attack religion.

I dont know... getting baptised causes him to want to build a flying city he can use to wipe out the rest of humanity

#41 Edited by ripelivejam (4621 posts) -

MAN FUCK THIS GAME

#42 Posted by Pudge (911 posts) -

"it’s quite possible that atheists worked on the game"

HAHA. Yeah... quite possible indeed.

HA. That made my night.

#43 Edited by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

no explicit agenda to attack religion.

I dont know... getting baptised causes him to want to build a flying city he can use to wipe out the rest of humanity

I don't think that's a correct interpretation.

I think the general idea is that booker is a bad person in any event. Getting baptised just changed his flavor, but not his underlaying makeup.

#44 Posted by Bourbon_Warrior (4523 posts) -

Glenn Beck is the worst, fabricated the tea party movement pretty much him self, with his fake tears and all.

#45 Posted by musclerider (591 posts) -

Those comments are really something else. I think I'll just convince myself that Reddit got to it and made up all of them.

Online
#46 Posted by Dan_CiTi (3456 posts) -

I thought this would have been a lot worse. Not bad.

#47 Posted by ShaggE (6636 posts) -

Oh MAN, those comments. It takes a monumental level of stupidity to be unable to separate the racism and political views of the characters with the views of the developers. It's like the concept of storytelling is completely alien to these people.

I can't imagine living like that: everything's an agenda, everyone is out to corrupt "the children", anyone with opposing political affiliation (or anybody who doesn't fit a very specific lifestyle) is a cartoonish caricature of a real person, all media is evil unless you agree with it...

I kinda feel for those folks, because it's gotta be hell spending every waking moment hating things.