Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

October 6, 2010 -

In a weirdly specific press release, religious game developer and publisher Left Behind Games stated that it’s received initial holiday orders for 37,174 copies of its PC games.

The orders were from the U.S.’s “top four leading Christian store chains,” covering 503 locations. Titles ordered included Praise Champion, Charlie Church Mouse: Superpack, Keys of the Kingdom and Left Behind 2: Tribulation Forces, but the real stalwart of the bunch was Left Behind 3: Rise of the Antichrist, which averaged 24.8 copies ordered per store.

CEO Troy Lyndon added, “The depth of these new orders increases our projected fiscal year revenue by $401,095.”

Last month, Left Behind reported revenue of $210,000 for the two previous quarters of 2010, so it appears that Christian games are no different than mass-market games in relying on holiday sales to boost full year profits.

Left Behind Games recently revealed that its games would be carried in Wal-Mart stores around the U.S., following a pilot program in Texas. The company added that it is currently seeking distributors in Australia, South Africa, Brazil, the United Kingdom and Europe.


Comments

Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

I am a Christian, not part of the "Left Behind" Evangelical (with a big "E") crowd but sitll a Christian and I know how Christian media in general tends to get reviewed, which is negatively regardless of quality. (Example: VeggieTales sucks, but we love Annoying Orange which is the same thing only less socially redeeming and more annoying. But we're going to ignore that because we hate VeggieTales cause its Christian. That kind of thinking, where Christians can't make anything of any real value, or if they do and you can't ignore it then the Christian aspects of it are deemphasized) But I also know how Christian video game companies have often cut corners, releasing mediocre games that make gamers who are personaly Christian ashamed to be put in the same category with these companies who market directly to their grandmothers and don't seem to even be aware that gamers do exist and they're supposed to be producing some kind of end product for them that isn't supposed to suck. I also know there were some genuinely fun Christian (or "Christian-themed" at least) video games on the PC in the 1990s like Onesimus A Quest For Freedom, Captain Bible in Dome of Darkness and Conflict in Jerusalem. Those titles were by people who didn't cut corners, who made full scale Christian video games for the technology of the time. I haven't played any of the Left Behind titles but I hope they are continuing that kind of thing and not just putting out crap that your grandmother will buy you and you might put in the disc once just for laughs.

Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

Metacritic rates the Left Behind series of games around 35%.  Translation: The company doesn't know how to make good video games and should give up.  Metacritic is the best source I've found to determine whether or not a game is worth playing in the first place.

Today's game developers should scour game content and offer a "clean game" option potentially to reduce their "M"-rated game content to "T" or even "E10+".  Reduced ESRB rating = more sales.  A clean game option would completely remove all foul language and innuendo, use an alternate storyline for various sections (if necessary), clean up the gore on various textures and levels, and reduce death gore.

By the way, 99% of all foul language is unnecessary in single-player games.  When I hear foul language in a single-player game, I ask the game character, "What?  Are you 12 years old?  Because if I want to hear foul language, I'll play Counter-Strike or MW2 with 12 year olds.  Adults keep their mouths shut like Gordon Freeman.  There are over 300,000 words in the English dictionary.  Pick another word to use."

I get annoyed when Christians think that they can only play games with so-called "Christian" themes like Left Behind.  There are a LOT of great games out there that, if they had a "clean game" option, would be fantastic games for both Christians and non-Christians alike as well as reach more age groups (i.e. more sales to parents of a younger audience) and offer replay value for younger audiences as they get older and more mature.

- Left4Dead

Why are zombies always eating brains? I want to see zombies that eat toes for a living. Undead-related pun intended.

- Left4Dead Why are zombies always eating brains? I want to see zombies that eat toes for a living. Undead-related pun intended.

Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

yeah lolz, "I only read/listen/play Christian stuff" is a stupid thing to say.

 

I use my "Guitar Praise" controller to play Frets on Fire (FoFiX) instead!

Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

"Reduced ESRB rating = more sales."

Do you honestly believe this is true?  Do you think Left 4 Dead would have sold better if you removed the guns, blood, and zombies to make it an E game?

And I must say the idea of scouring a game to sell a "clean game" is pretty ridiculous.  It's not hard to edit a song to take out the bad words for a radio release.  Creating a separate story line, different models, textures, gameplay mechanics, cutscenes, dialogue, and everything else that goes into a game would double the time and cost of making the game in the first place.  You seriously might as well just make two games.

Not to mention the fact that yes, some games do deal with grown up themes.  They're meant to.  And it's frankly insulting that you want the people that pour all that work into them for years at a time to turn around and gut their projects for a "clean" version.  Let's do movies while we're at it.  And books.  Surely all those books with people that swear and have fights need to be rewritten.  It wont compromise the artistic vision of, let's say, the Lord of the Rings trilogy to remove the fighting.

Long story short, censoring content doesn't make things better, wont increase sales and does stiffle creativity.

I apologize for the rant.

===============

Chris Kimberley

===============

Chris Kimberley

Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

Dude um, no I think you're wrong in a big part of what you said.

My dad used to play Duke Nukem 3D. And he's a total family man, you've gotta respect that. So he would use the option built into the game to tone down alot of the stuff in it that really isn't condusive to the kind of lifestyle he's decided to live - and screw you if you can't respect that. Is having that kind of option in a game, "censorship"? Whether it is or not, it's something that some people want for good reasons.

As for myself, the original Duke Nukem 3D levels bore me but I'm rather fond of "Duke it out in DC" and "Duke Nukem Life's a Beach"

Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

Considering the quality of the Left Behind games, I'm surprised they've sold that many.  Of course, that's not actual sales, but store stock orders, but still.  Seriously, it's a mediocre game.

Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

The sales likely come from well meaning grandparents and realtives who go for that last second gift they put little thought into.

Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

Eh, stores I personally don't shop in.

So long as people don't chastise me for not buying it, goo on and release it.

Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

Am I the only one who thinks the guy on the cover looks like Linus Roache?

Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

Its amazing to me that Christian stores need things with such a strict and almost mindless level of story, allegory, ect. You'd think they would be able to find such things in normal media and play up the positive aspects there of.... then again Christianity is childishly negative and pompous as most human groups are.......

 


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Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

Insert "physician, heal thyself" joke here.

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Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

Holy shit!

Seriously, I'm glad GP is covering this - it'll be very interesting to see if 'Christian games' really rise up and what happens to it in the future. I don't think it's healthy for someone to have religion in every single aspect of their life ("You can't play Mario, it's heathenly secular!"), but if it's what they want then go for it.

Re: Left Behind Games Packing Christian Stores with Games

I tend to have a similiar feeling about these games as, say, those neo-nazi recruitment games.... I support the publisher's right to make the games... but the market.... and how the games dovetail in with real (and potentially problematic) beliefs make me worry.

With most games.... you play GTA, few people are thinking 'hey, I want this life, and this stuff is ok'... but games that are following the same message that is also being pushed into these kids from both parents and community authority figures.. and those messages revolve around the idea that the end is coming and destroying others will be an important part of this... that causes me to take pause.

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