A religion board game – satire or scandal?
How much fun — really — can you make of religion? A U.S. marketer of board games may find out with “Playing Gods” which it calls “the world’s first satirical board game of religious warfare.” It had its European premier this week at the London Toy Fair and will make a U.S. debut at the New York Toy Fair in February.
Ben Radford, head of the company that put the game together, said in a news release it is designed for two to five players who act as “gods” and …
“Try try to take over the world and make everyone on Earth worship him or her. As a god, you can try to convert other gods’ followers, promising them things like Afterlife, Prosperity, and Miracles. Or you can kill them off with plagues, locusts, earthquakes, floods, and other Acts of Gods.
“Watch out, though, because bad things can happen to good gods—one of your vicars is caught with a prostitute? Too bad, you lose a sect!
“Players can pit Christians against Muslims and Hindus against Jews, or be the mascot, a machine-gun-toting Buddha. Players may choose to be any god from Jesus to Moses, from Cthulu to Zeus, from the Cult of Oprah to the Almighty Dollar. (And yes, there is a Muslim figure.) Though the theme includes religious battles, it is really a satire with an underlying message of peace, encouraging people to think about the tragedy of killing others just because they have different beliefs.”
It costs about $40, and German, French, Spanish and Portuguese versions are available in preparation for the European launch. Information is available at http://www.PlayingGods.com. Radford says the gods seem to be smiling anyway — he’s selling about 10 games a day.