Six Days in Fallujah, is still controversy: propaganda allegations for the FPS set in Iraq

Six Days in Fallujah, is still controversy: propaganda allegations for the FPS set in Iraq

Six Days in Fallujah, is still controversy

The Second Gulf War started in 2003 and which saw the US-led coalition make its entry into Saddam Hussein's Iraq is preparing to become the protagonist of a video game. Not without controversy.

With the title Six Days in Fallujah, the tactical FPS aims - according to its authors - to stage the events that led to the fall of the City in an "apolitical" and realistic way of Mosques. Initially announced in 2009, just three years after the conflict that cost the lives of many civilians, the project was subsequently shelved. The decision was made by Konami, originally publisher of the shooter.

Years later, the Atomic Heart team decided to revive the project, to bring a war scenario to the videogame scene extremely complex. Following the release of the first Six Days in Fallujah gameplay, the already numerous allegations of bias, historical revisionism and a desire for propaganda in support of the action of the US military have increased further. Videogame community and industry journalists have expressed more than one perplexity about the advisability of following up on the creation of the game: among these, also the well-known developer Rami Ismail.

The professional in the sector expressed an extremely severe judgment on Six Days in Fallujah from his Twitter account, criticizing many aspects, both on the playful and on the content front. From what is shown in the gameplay sequences, Ismail highlights the absence of any kind of reference to the suffering of the civilian population or attempts to empathize with the emotions felt by the inhabitants of Fallujah, while the commitment on this front towards US soldiers is extremely obvious. The choice to paint Fallujah in a procedural way was also strongly criticized, especially in the face of the declarations of realism spread by Atomic Heart. Finally, concludes the developer, there is no desire to tackle thorny issues that have dominated the debate on the Second Gulf War over the years, such as the use of unconventional weapons.

To deepen the debate and the issue, on the pages of Everyeye find a rich special on Six Days in Fallujiah, propaganda and video games, by our Marco Mottura.

Six Days in Fallujah Gameplay Trailer Released

Publisher Victura Games has released a new gameplay video for Six Days in Fallujah, its upcoming tactical shooter set during the Iraq War's Second Battle of Fallujah. In the video from IGN, viewers can get a glimpse at some of the gameplay from the title, from shooter combat, to the way that the player is able to give commands to fellow soldiers. The video shows how rooms and buildings are procedurally generated, in order to reflect the way soldiers often didn't know what to expect. Several veterans were consulted for the game, such as Sgt. Jason Kyle, and they appear in the video as well.

The video can be found in the Tweet embedded below.

Six Days in Fallujah has been the subject of a significant amount of controversy since the game was first announced. While video games have frequently depicted fictionalized takes on actual military conflicts, US forces are alleged to have used white phosphorus against civilians and enemy combatants during the Second Battle of Fallujah, which constitutes a war crime. Understandably, the game will not allow players to use white phosphorous, but its use will apparently be addressed in documentary footage that appears in the game. However, its absence highlights the difficulty of making a game like this: removing it makes it seem as though its use is being glossed over, but including it would run the risk of condoning its use.

The gameplay video for Six Days in Fallujah does showcase the way that the game has been shaped by those that consulted on it, and the impact the events had on those that served. In addition to the US forces, the video concludes with commentary from civilians that remained in Fallujah during the conflict, explaining why they remained in their homes. Their presence in the video is important, and their commentary is a welcome addition. Unfortunately, we only get the briefest of glimpses of the player interacting with civilians. The majority of the video instead features traditional first-person shooter gameplay, and the genre has a poor track record of conveying the real cost and impact of conflict.

It remains to be seen whether or not Six Days in Fallujah will be able to handle the real-life conflict in a way that's accurate and respectful. For now, gamers will just have to wait and see when it releases later this year.

What do you think of Six Days in Fallujah? Do you find the game's subject matter inappropriate for a video game? Let us know in the comments or share your thoughts directly on Twitter at @Marcdachamp to talk all things gaming!

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