Forums - Gaming Discussion - Bioshock Infinite Violates Religious Beliefs, Valve offers Refunds

BioShock Infinite

If you haven't already played BioShock: Infinite and have managed to avoid spoilers, you're either some kind of self-controlled super hero, or you don't know how to read. Either way, it's probably safe to assume that you're aware of the game's religious underpinnings.

In the world of BioShock, religion and politics have been unmistakably intertwined, and the game's Christian symbolism often becomes downright disturbing. Baptism, in particular, is utilized throughout the campaign to underline the weight of Booker's decisions. Just after Dewitt is transported to the floating city of Columbia, there's a creepy sequence where players are forced to accept a preacher's offer of baptism in order to enter the city. This scene is probably less than 20 minutes into the campaign, and has compelled several devout Christians to ask for a refund.

In a recent interview with Kotaku, Breen Malmberg, a gamer and a Christian, explained his convictions:

"As baptism of the Holy spirit is at the center of Christianity - of which I am a devout believer - I am basically being forced to make a choice between committing extreme blasphemy by my actions in choosing to accept this 'choice' or forced to quit playing the game before it even really starts.

Of course I cannot hold true to my beliefs and also commit this act, so I am therefor[e] forced to not play the game."

Far be it from me to quibble with Malmberg's conscience, but it seems a little strange to draw the line at baptism. Video games are chock-full of actions that are specifically forbid in most religious texts and, for some reason, are easily ignored. Murder is probably the most salient example, but premarital sex, taking the lord's name in vain, and wizardry are also on the docket.

BioShock Infinite

Let's not forget one thing: video games are fictional. Just because we're asked to make a decision that might compete with our ethical standards doesn't mean that we’re responsible for that action. If this were true, we would responsible for every sinful action in every piece of fiction we've ever read simply because we didn't put book down.

Luckily, Malmberg purchased his copy of BioShock on Steam and the good people at Valve were willing to offer a refund. However, I kind of doubt that Wal-Mart or Best Buy would have a similarly forgiving policy. Most retailers aren't concerned about your ethical convictions, which probably makes them evil.






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What a bunch of scammers and crybabies.

"Of course I cannot hold true to my beliefs and also commit this act, so I am therefor[e] forced to not play the game."

I'd punch this guy in the face, seriously.

not to forget that this game kills people. seriously, killing people in a game is fine but religious stuff is soo wrong or what?



It a game. GTF over it. YOU are not actually making and choice about your beliefs. You're just following the narrative of a game. Do they also not watch movies about other religions or with those twisting Christianity beliefs?

No, you are forced to choose between having your character violate a pretty minor belief of your religion and whining about imagined persecution, thereby missing out on one of the best and most thought-provoking games of recent years.

It amazes me that people can actually think like this guy.



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Flawless logic in the works...probably better for all of us that he stopped playing at this point since HE clearly can't distinguish fiction and reality. Who knows what he would do after shooting several hundred "people" in the game...

*Sigh*

Kantor said:
No, you are forced to choose between having your character violate a pretty minor belief of your religion and whining about imagined persecution, thereby missing out on one of the best and most thought-provoking games of recent years.

It amazes me that people can actually think like this guy.

I'm not sure i'd call baptism a minor belief of Baptists.  Since said belief is what their entire branch of Christianity is based around... there branch splitting off because the whole core tennent of Batpists is that baptisms should only be performed among believers and not on infants.


So having baptists force everybody to be baptised before they enter the city is more or less literally against the very core of their religion as it's specifically why they split off.

 

Now why they should care... I don't know it's a videogame... but there it is.



Kasz216 said:
Kantor said:
No, you are forced to choose between having your character violate a pretty minor belief of your religion and whining about imagined persecution, thereby missing out on one of the best and most thought-provoking games of recent years.

It amazes me that people can actually think like this guy.

I'm not sure i'd call baptism a minor belief of Baptists.  Since said belief is what their entire branch of Christianity is based around... there branch splitting off because the whole core tennent of Batpists is that baptisms should only be performed among believers and not on infants.


So having baptists force everybody to be baptised before they enter the city is more or less literally against the very core of their religion as it's specifically why they split off.

 

Now why they should care... I don't know it's a videogame... but there it is.

Surely Christianity is based around the ten commandments and later the teachings of Jesus? Shouldn't those supercede something like Baptist teaching?

You violate the sixth commandment literally thousands of times during the game, so if you don't care about that, I see no reason to care about baptism.



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Kantor said:
No, you are forced to choose between having your character violate a pretty minor belief of your religion and whining about imagined persecution, thereby missing out on one of the best and most thought-provoking games of recent years.

It amazes me that people can actually think like this guy.

I'm a christian like him, but none of this bothered me like it did him.  He's the kind of person who makes other christians look bad.  I know of some people that go to my church that would act like him.  I just don't understand because it's entertainment and people can't cater to everybody's beliefs.