In the spirit of full disclosure, I must state that I
- Am an American
- Never equated using French phrases in conversation as a sign of sophistication and culture
- Do not regard France as the shining center around which all the civilized world revolves
- See France as a country with a long and proud history, which is struggling with the idea that it, and Europe, are no longer the undisputed hub of the world
"New York Defender" is an internet video game based loosely on the 9/11 attack on New York City. It reminds me of the old "Defender" video game: except this time a digitized New York City skyline is at the bottom of the screen, and instead of shooting incoming missiles, the player shoots incoming airliners.
As an action video game, it's got possibilities.
As a themed video game, it's as tasteless as the Paris fashions American designers aped in my early years. That's not just my opinion.
Matt Scheiner was on the 81st floor of Tower 1 on September 1, 2001. He made it down the stairway and out of the tower before if collapsed. "So, when the 27-year-old from Graniteville was told of an Internet videogame allowing players to shoot down airplanes as they fly toward the Twin Towers, he was disgusted and the old hurt surfaced again." ("Staten Island Real-Time News," "Staten Island 9/11 survivor disgusted by 'tasteless' Internet video game" (January 1, 2008))
"Tasteless" may not be the best way to describe "New York Defender." The game's French designer says "There are no ways to actually win. The winner becomes the last one to lose." (Tom Landrigan's "Video Games and Terrorism" for Professor Blackmon's English 304C class (Original document in Microsoft Word format.))
"New York Defender" has been around since at least 2002. A Denver Post article that year said that the French game designer gave no way to win the game. The game's reason d'etre is "to illustrate the ultimate impossibility of fighting terrorism -- a fight the Unites States is still waging in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere throughout the world." ("Staten Island Advance," "Web game inflames the pain of Sept. 11" (January 2, 2008)) ("Unites States" exists in original.)
Ah, mais oui! Such relevance!
Maybe it's because I'm a rude, crude American, utterly incapable of comprehending the multifarious aspects of the contemporary world's socio-political community, but I don't think that the war on terror is hopeless. At least, not as long as there is an alternative to French wisdom and sophistication.
I'm assuming that, based on
- America's attraction for bright, innovative, and determined people from around the world
- America's ability to form global coalitions without French approval