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Forums: Index > Temple of Gaia > How come there's been no Christian controversy despite the obvious themes of the game?


I thought that the American and UK releases of Shin Megami Tensei games (and spin-offs) would attract controversy in America and Britain. How come it hasn't? I expected it to what with the use a pentagram in the game, obvious summoning of demons, siding with them, opposing God and all that. GalaxiaWild 11:59, September 4, 2010 (UTC)

Probably because the most controversial of the Shin Megami Tensei games haven't been released outside Japan. The later installments in the series have also downplayed the darker and more sinsiter interpretations of the judeo-christian god and it's followers. YHVH has become more tame and less evil and violent as well. Personally I think that if this is to make the games seem more appealing to western players then I would have to say "thanks but no thanks" YHVH, the god of the bible is a f-ing tyrant and if you read the book without any apologetics preprogrammed in, you'll realize that truth. But in truth this is all a red herring.
The most important part of this of course is that these games aren't nearly popular enough to generate any controversy. That's the hypocrisy of the moral guardians, they only care as soon as something's popular and taking attention away from whatever value system they happen to have. There is also the key factor that these are JAPANESE games. The moral guardians don't claim to understand the Japanese culture and value systems that are in place. So unless Shin Megami Tensei reaches Pokemon levels of popularity, I doubt we'll ever hear any major outcry. DrakeDarkHunter 9:08, September 17, 2010 (UTC)
While I disagree with the previous poster above me about God, I've got to agree with them about a lot of the other stuff. A lot of more controversial stuff isn't well known outside Japan (which I consider a mixed blessing of sorts) and there isn't a lot of popularity to the series to begin with. The only game with more controversial elements in it was Nocturne, and aside from the gaming world, I never heard much of a fuss over it. The spin-offs pretty much also pretty much avoid this because quite a few of the games don't have the elements you mentioned above, or if they do have them, they keep it vague and use stand ins.
Thinking about it now, the Shin Megami Tensei games really have some kind of controversy barrier, don't they? You'd think at least the headshot-suicide-summoning in Persona 3, something you couldn't really explain with cultural or value difference, would garner something, but there was practically nothing. There wasn't even any letters from angry parents. I can't complain, but it's strange, isn't it?
Also, visiting a couple of Christan gaming sites, the series in general doesn't seem to even make a spark. Most posters don't seem to care about any of the aspects you mentioned, or seem to take what they did with the series more as artistic liberties than any sort of attack. Quite a few posters said they would be against any stirring of controversy amonst the media. I even saw a few fans and one person say Nocturne was their favorite game of all time (although quite a few thought the True Demon ending was a bit "much") Overall, the series doesn't seem to generate any friction from Christian gamers or Christians in general. Maybe it's just the sublties of the series and the handling of the subject, treating God and his most fanatical fallowers as villainous, but many of the religious folk as generally decent people. Maybe it's because the moral grayness in the games that put Law and Chaos as two neutral forces rather than "Good and Evil with the serial numbers scraped off". Maybe it's because Atlus doesn't hold fake-Christan protests about their games in order gain pubplicity, mocking people's faith, insulting their reasoning and making them feel as ashamed of their spiritual beliefs. Well, be it obscurity, understanding or some kind of luck, Shin Megami Tensei seems to fly under the controversy radar, and with the great games they've made, I can't complain. -- Otogi 2, September 18, 2010
Of course, secretly it's because we're just biding our time till we can immolate you with the meggido ark. Don't tell anyone, though. -- Bunker Man , September 22, 2010
Truthfully almost everyone interprets these games wrong. YHVH is not trying to control them for no reason, And Chaos followers are only using you in the games as a means to an end. YHVH lost faith in humanity because he gave us free will and we squander it on sin. Chaos wants to keep the freedom to do what we want. the only true evil in this franchise is you. The human's are the ones that piss off god and make him want to kill us off. The humans are also the ones that follow ether or blindly. In the end if you want free will you need to stop hurting others, its abuse of a gift. That is what they are trying to convey, but just like real life people don't see this most of the time. -- Nutural Dec 16, 2010
From what I've seen, Nutural, that hasn't been the case. People usually know that both Law and Chaos have reasons for what they're doing. Its just that 1) What either side wants is an uncomfortable extreme for humanity and eliminates most progress we've made throughout all civilization, 2) What they want ensures that many people and demons will die regardless of who takes control, 3) They want absolute elimination of either side, 4) People who do survive can't choose their fate after they gain control, its already decided by those who gain control and 5) Both side's motives are (and have proven to be) rather questionable. You also say that humanity should stop abusing its gift of free will by hurting others, but that's precisely what every single side does to get what it wants (in fact, Chaos ultimate goal of freedom seems to have a society where that will be the rule). Speaking of humanity, I have to disagree about them being the evil ones this time and point out SMT's biggest flaw in its morality system: when Lawful or Chaotic, you serve under a powerful being and take all of their (and the faction's) flaws and immoral acts with you. When neutral, you never need to do that. You serve under yourself and in trying to make the world neutral, you are never forced to take such flaws or commit such acts, and since the future is left ambiguous, there are no flaws forseen in the future that isn't the fault of either (you guessed it) Law or Chaos. You always become a flawed Knight Templar with Law and Chaos, but its a choice with Neutral. Also, The Great Will always seems to do the same with every universe it creates, and unless it specifically made each one so that they would be corrupt, wouldn't there at least be a few that it just takes over out of what seems like greed? And if it does make every universe so that it does become corrupt, what does that say about Law? And about humans fallowing each side blindly? Demons do the same, and neither probably would if each side was trying to strong arm the other one. -- Otogi, Dec 20, 2010
Because despite what most people like to believe, vast majority of Christians don't give a damn. It's a video game. They're smart enough to understand that just because something is in a piece of work that might be otherwise objectionable to them, doesn't mean they have to make a big deal about it. Like if a movie has a serial killer in it, it's not saying serial killers are cool. It's just a story. This isn't Saudi Arabia. 99.72.53.109 10:06, March 2, 2011 (UTC)
Also, the law side is totally badass. Just sayin. -Bunker Man



Reply: Well, that isn't the really odd thing, honestly..
Despite the fact that this game is about demons the game is sold in Saudi Arabia, yes, Saudi Fucking Arabia..
I live there and i love my SMT IV.. (Remember that what ever happens it's a game, people shouldn't take games nor movies seriously, they're merely medias for entertainment and nothing more)
EDIT: Why do you have to be so ignorant and judgemental, "Bunker Man"?

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