Thursday, September 08, 2005

Political Musings Around Deus Ex

Before I say anything, let me point out that this is just my random musing over an idea I thought up about 5 minutes ago. It isn't a well-constructed or complete argument, nor do I intend it to be - just me spitting out what I'm thinking about.

I don't know how many of my friends actually played through a significant part of Deus Ex, (most found it too slow) but I finished it last year and really enjoyed it. One thing I found interesting about it was the way it depicted the near-future of our world. The world of Deus Ex is filled with fear and terrorism. Some leaders (political and otherwise) use this fear to further thair own adgendas. Of course, being a video game, their adgendas mainly center around variants of "take over the world," but I still found it to be an interesting parallel to our own world. (Here is where all my conservative friends just opened their mouths and started shaking their heads - bear with me!) The fact that the game came out before 9/11 made it seems all the more prophetic. The fact that leaders exploiting fears over terrorism played prominently gave me the impression that this was a "liberal-friendly/sympathizing" game.

I recently found a review of the game from when it was new (2000) in which the author laments the fact that the game's designers took up "ultra-right fantasies" for much of the games plot. He said "a plot which fingers the UN as the chief agency seeking world domination is only heading one way politically", and noted "a wimpy liberal isn’t going to find much attractive about their final choices."

Wait - I'm a liberal, I loved this game, and it's plot most of all! I guess my point is that politics aren't static. What was considered a "right" game under Clinton can now be considered a "left" game under Bush. I guess that would just make it an "anti-government" game, although newspaper clippings and e-mails tend to paint a favorable picture of the fictional President Mead, who opposes the the increased powers of UNATCO.

Actually, I guess I don't really have too much of a point, just throwing my observations out there. I just found the difference between my impression of the game and this review's.

Thoughts, anyone?

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