In these trying times in video games, there’s always that one thing that tries to go all out on the current momentum and that thing now is an upcoming PC game called Hatred. Oh yes, it’s called Hatred. Even better, it will exactly play out like you think it will, but we’re going to give you as much of its announcement as we possibly can, while trying to retain our glee at just how balls to the wall this project, headed for release in 2015, really is. Here’s an excerpt:
Hatred is an isometric shooter with a disturbing atmosphere of masskilling, where player takes the role of a cold blood Antagonist, who is filled with hate against humanity. It’s a horror, but here YOU are the villain.
We were already well on board that we would play the bad guy in a thing called Hatred, but it’s nice to have that emphasized, just to be clear, right? The game is made by Polish developer Destructive Creations. That’s their name. It couldn’t be more “Edgy: The Game” if it tried, but let’s continue with announcements anyway:
Destructive Creations is an experienced, indie team that, in times where a lot of games are heading to be polite, colorful, politically correct and trying to be some kind of higher art, rather than just an entertainment, wanted to create something against trends.
Of course they are. This is social commentary. You go around shooting people for the hell of it and get rewarded with gratuitous executions of police officers, women begging for their lives and so on. Not content with just forcing someone to fellate your gun? That’s ok; you can also repeatedly thrust your big, mighty blade in and out of helpless victims. That’s pretty much the entire game, if we understand it correctly. Just to be absolutely thorough, however, here’s the transcript of the game’s gameplay announcement trailer:
My name is not important. What is important is what I’m going to do. I just fu*kin’ hate this world. And the human worms feasting on its corpus. My whole life is just cold, bitter hatred. And I always wanted to die violently. This is the time of vengeance and no life is worth saving. And I will put in the grave as many as I can. It’s time for me to kill. And it’s time for me to die. My genocide crusade begins here.
This “message” is no doubt directed to the current climate in games, which are being criticized for upholding a status quo that doesn’t benefit all but a core demographic. It’s obvious, tacky and certainly dangerous, not only in the direct sense that it glorifies mass shootings to an extensive degree. Given this is a similar “message” that killers, like recently Elliot Rodgers, have directed to the world, it’s only a matter of time before one of our collective detractors pick this up and hoist it up as an example why video games are bad. Fox News could link potentially harming material in games like SimCity, it won’t even need to blink to see the threat here.
Hatred isn’t even the first to go for this pitch, since Rockstar Games, one of the bigger companies out there, already did the ultra-violence thing in the Manhunt series. This was just as criticized back then, except now we’re smack-dab in a time stretch where people are threatening each other over games and real people are murdering real people in the same deranged manner as depicted here. To say it’s opportunistic for Hatred to climb on this combined wagon would be an understatement.
So yes, this message is filled with a fair share of ridicule, because Hatred does deserve ridicule for such a potentially dangerous amount of opportunism. And yet, it probably shouldn’t be dismissed. For one, it is indeed obvious what the real intention of the game is here, so anyone fooled by fair-sounding words is more delusional than the original pitch itself. Secondly, it, well, doesn’t look half bad? We’ve seen much worse renditions, with robotic animation rigging, barely pasted together textures and barely audible free sounds. This not only seems to connect with a certain theme with its use of grayscale colors, but gameplay also seems to run fluidly across its locations.
Are we pissed at how Hatred is using a mix of mass shootings and game uprising movements to promote a game? Not exactly, as it isn’t even the only one trying to get a leg up by using a certain trending platform. Are we offended? Not directly, as it’s way too obvious what’s going on here. Would we play it? We most definitely would. We might not “like” the pitch, but we respect the idea and that idea looks as entertaining as stated originally. So, it’s not all veils and vitriol, at least. We’ll keep our walking cane handy, just in case.