Religion in video games (maybe spoilers for those who haven't played)

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Religion in video games (maybe spoilers for those who haven't played)

It seems a lot of games nowadays have religion as main element.  I find it really interesting being an atheist, because it parellels a lot of the religions we have around today.  Here are some examples (with a few spoilers to be safe)







 One of my favorite games ever is Final Fantasy X for the PS2.  When it starts, you follow along the story of the hero Tidus.  He ends up being thrust into a new world, where religion is a main concept.  Apparently the Sins of past generations have spawned a destructive monster called "Sin."  The people of the world pray constantly in hopes it would delay the destruction of the world, but it doesn't.  Eventually, deeper into the game, you learn the dark origins of Sin, and how the religion was created.  It shows how lighthearted traditions in the past turn into religious fact in the future.  It also shows the breakdown of religion when the characters learn the truth.  It also has a lot of corruption with the priests, and religious symbols.

 Another favorite game of mine is Tales of Symphonia for the Gamecube.  It starts out rather innocently, and it seems like another "chosen hero to save the world" story.  The chosen hero must depart her home on a quest to regenerate the world and restore harmony.  She does this by praying at temples scattered around the world.  Later in the game, everything changes in a strange turn of events.  Suddenly, you learn of a conspiracy that the angels had, and how they created the religion for their own reasons (another perk of the game, you get to kill angels!).  Also, you can fight against the church and the pope, as they are a part of the conspiracy too.  It also has great moral values, and presents issues like slavery and racism in a cute little package.

 I'm sure there's a lot of other games out there with creative religious themes... of which I can't think of right now.  Anyway, what are some of your favorite games with religion in them?


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It's definately become

It's definately become something of a trend. I think FFX did the most impressive job of ridiculing religion of any game of the last 10 years or so, but that's not to say it's the only one to do so. Still, the comparisons between the Yu Yevon faith of FFX and theism as generally practiced is striking. Even when considering that their satan(Sin) is an actual physical entity that does much harm.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.

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I'm avoiding the ToS

I'm avoiding the ToS spoilers, as I'm not done it yet, but FAR and AWAY the best game that talks about religion in my eyes is Xenogears.

The Ethos("The Church" in the Japanese version) and their corrupt leader. A futuristic elite class that rules over the unknowing land dwelling "Lambs". Deus, the god who isn't a god who only created man to have components to rebuild itself, and 2 men searching for that god for their own purposes.

Nanomachines, and children created from nanomachines, and a future that feels like the middle ages, a woman created to be a counterpart to a lone survivor on a planet, reincarnation of those 2 soulmates over thousands of years, the search for self, multiple personalities based on Jungian and Freudian ideas, the 12 Apostles, Anima relics, and a scene with giant robots and a giant pink bunny crucified at "Golgoda". LOL

It's my favourite game of all time, I've beaten it at least 10 times all the way through, watched it beaten twice by someone else, and I frequently go back and play it from one of my many MANY save points. It's a good 70 hours play through, even if you're fast, and 100+ the first time I played. The character designs are amazing, the story is shocking, compelling and fun, and there's animated cutscenes that look awesome scattered throughout.

Everyone should play this game.

Best game evar.

[edit] Oh yeah, and one of playable characters is a priest who fights with 2 guns. SWEET! 

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I've always wanted to pick

I've always wanted to pick up that game.  Never got around to it though. 

Roisin Dubh
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I couldnt help but think of

I couldnt help but think of that game the Flanders' kids played in The Simpsons -- "Bible Blaster."  Convert the Heathens!

"The powerful have always created false images of the weak."

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I remember that.  Heck,

I remember that.  Heck, there were a lot of old Bible games on the old Nintendo.  You can check out a video review here:

Another game I can think of is Fable for the Xbox.  Religion isn't really deep, but it's integrated into the story, and peoples' speech.  There's a good god called Avo, and a bad one called Skorm.  Sometimes people will say "Thank Avo you're here!" or "Skorm damnit!"  It definately adds to the flavor of the game.  It kind of makes me want to make my own religion... haha. 

JESUS SAVES!!! .... and takes only half damage!

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My favourite was The Bible

My favourite was The Bible for the Commodore 64.


This game is the biggest game ever in the history of gaming. Even if you know exactly what you're doing, it will still take at least 1,438 hours to complete (on easy!). Every story, every parable, every tiny detail is included in the mammoth adventure.

Level One had you controlling either Adam or Eve, each with their own skills, talking to snakes, collecting fruit and stopping occasionally to pray to God. A little known secret: NOT taking the apple from the middle of the garden opened up a warp portal, allowing you to skip the entire Jesus and Revelations sections.

Moving on to level 268, you were then in Jesus' time. Your goals here were to keep your faith high by collecting bibles, talk with God to gain strength and perform miracles on the needy and helpless, all the while avoiding temptation.
Doing something in the game God disapproved of sent an electric shock into the controller to teach you your lesson.

I started this game in 1986, and I'm still playing it now. I'm stuck trying to defeat the boss Goliath the Giant, I've looked everywhere and I can't find a small stone to put in my sling. If anyone can help, let me know.

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Religion is great in

Religion is great in fantasy, best place for it

Best TV program on is Battlestar Galatica where the a big part of the story is the 'robots' are highly religious seeking good

If only all religion was treated as a story (and in some cases a morality play) the world would be a far better place

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xenogears is a great game


but i would definitely have to recommend xenosaga. it was a 6 part project based on alot of the story lines of xenogears but more of a prelude (due to copyright restrictions, they had to change the names of alot of things in the game.) each 'episode' is named after a book by Neitzsche and takes content from the Dead Sea Scrolls and Judeo-Christian books including the apocryphia, combines Jungian and Freudian psychology terms, Quantum Physics and combines it all together to make one truly awesome story.

You follow the main character shion as she unravels the mysteries of weird spirit-like creatures called Gnosis that suddenly appear and each episode is between 40-60hrs long for a total of about 120-180hrs of total game play. most of which is cinematics.


Xenosaga I: Der Will Zur Macht (The Will to Power)

Xenosaga II: Jenseits Gut und Bose (Beyond Good and Evil)

Xenosaga III: Also spracht Zarathustra (Also spoke Zarathustra)


i would have to say besides final fantasy vii, the best game ever made. (story line wise.) graphics are really good too.


i could go on for hours about how awesome the game is, but you just really need to go play it.