New Age for Left Behind Games
The new appointments follow months of controversy over the game, both at Talk to Action and elsewhere. Critics have charged that Eternal Forces is violent, that it promotes a paranoid and hateful worldview, and that even on a technical level the game is a failure: unentertaining and allegedly liable to install spyware.
These attacks have alarmed the Left Behind novels' authors, who have already been so disappointed by the books' movie spin-offs that they had their names removed from Peter Lalonde's flock of low-budget turkeys. In a bid to improve sales of the game among Christians, Jerry Jenkins reassured potential Christian purchasers that the game is "not more violent than the Old Testament", while LaHaye complained publicly that the groups opposing the game "don't attack other violent video games".
However, the company has also sought to disassociate itself from LaHaye's apocalyptic fundamentalism. As part of its PR drive, Left Behind Games decided to spam blogs that mention Eternal Forces with an unconvincing message from Lyndon:
"Our game does NOT teach the pre-tribulation theology of the book series, except that this worldview is utilized as a FICTIONAL backdrop of the game".
The company has also employed a PR consultant named Gordon Chiu to market the game in Asia. Chiu (better known for promoting skin products) had an even more unlikely take on the game; according to him, it promotes "non-violence" in a way that "connects very strongly with ancient Asian philosophies".
In this context, Bocskor's appointment appears less weird than it at first seems. Bocskor, although a highly-successful technology businessman, is also a rather counter-cultural figure. Based in New York, he acts as regional co-ordinator for the annual New-Agey "Burning Man" event, and he founded the "Society for Experimental Arts and Learning" for New York enthusiasts. Further, a list that he created for Amazon commends a number of New Age and esoteric titles.
Religion and business, it seems, creates some odd partnerships.
(Adapted from an entry on my blog)
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