Smuggle Truck: Operation Immigration Takes Heat from Advocacy Groups

February 11, 2011 -

The Owlchemy Labs, a Massachusetts-based developer of wacky and silly games, is taking some local heat from advocacy groups for its iOS game Smuggle Truck: Operation Immigration. In Smuggle Truck, players drive a pickup truck loaded with illegal immigrants. The goal of the game is to bring them over a fictional border while avoiding bumps that make them fall off the back of the truck.

Owlchemy Labs claims on the product page for the game that it was created out of a "the frustration our friends have experienced in trying to immigrate to the United States. With such a troublesome issue being largely avoided in popular media, especially video games, we felt the best way to criticize it was with an interactive satire."

The company also claims that they "maintained a meticulous eye to avoid depicting stereotypes and specific locales."

Despite those claims advocacy groups such as Mass. Immigrants & Refugee Advocacy Coalition and Centro Presente are not amused by the game at all. Eva Millona, executive director of the Massachusetts Immigrants & Refugee Advocacy Coalition, said the game "is in poor taste" and trivializes the risks that immigrants face trying to get into the country.

"Last year, 170 human beings died crossing the border," Millona said. "It's disgraceful that anyone would try to make money out of this tragedy by making light of it in a game."

Patricia Montes, executive director of Centro Presente, a Somerville, Massachusetts-based Latino immigrant advocacy group, agrees.

"I don't think that people who are trying to emigrate into the U.S. think they are part of a game," Montes said. "They do it because they are desperate."

Developer Alex Schwartz said that the message the game is trying to convey is that it is very tough to legally emigrate to the U.S., and that it is often easier to be smuggled across the border - despite numerous dangers.

You can watch the video to your left and make your own determination. More details on the game can be found at smuggletruck.com.

Source: MSNBC

 


Comments

Re: Smuggle Truck: Operation Immigration Takes Heat from ...

"Last year, 170 human beings died crossing the border," Millona said. "It's disgraceful that anyone would try to make money out of this tragedy by making light of it in a game."

Even if it had been a free flash game about immigration, they would have found a way to complain about it anyways.

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Living in Canada can be a very good thing, you know. We enjoy the universal healthcare and gun-free environment of an European country while getting all of our games released at the same time as in the US.

Living in Canada is awesome. We enjoy the universal healthcare and gun-free environment of a European country while getting all of our games released at the same time as the US.

Re: Smuggle Truck: Operation Immigration Takes Heat from ...

Looks like a fun game. I support it!

Re: Smuggle Truck: Operation Immigration Takes Heat from ...

"Last year, 170 human beings died crossing the border...It's disgraceful that anyone would try to make money out of this tragedy by making light of it in a game."

"I don't think that people who are trying to emigrate into the U.S. think they are part of a game," Montes said. "They do it because they are desperate."

Wow, way to go on totally missing the point. If they watch this, I wonder if their heads would spin on anger: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l7qKD-Ph7ds

 

 

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Andrew EisenPM - Yep, that's the one.03/06/2015 - 12:53am
TechnogeekBest case, it was some marketing douchebag who thought they could pander to both sides at once.03/06/2015 - 12:49am
TechnogeekAlso, this was the mistake tweet: http://i.imgur.com/4eLWNHx.jpg03/06/2015 - 12:48am
TechnogeekBecause nothing says "open, diverse gaming community" like buddying up with Breitbart.03/06/2015 - 12:47am
Papa MidnightAndrew Eisen, I believe this is the picture that you seek: http://i.imgur.com/Gdk60pa.jpg03/06/2015 - 12:30am
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prh99Craig R. Cause quite a few of them are not, they're bullies with different politics.03/06/2015 - 12:23am
MechaTama31What was the "mistake" tweet?03/06/2015 - 12:18am
MechaCrashWhatever you say, Goth.03/06/2015 - 12:02am
E. Zachary KnightGoth, they could have fooled me.03/05/2015 - 11:16pm
Goth_SkunkI don't understand. GamerGate supports an open, diverse gaming community for all as well. Google's statement is contradictory.03/05/2015 - 10:59pm
TechnogeekAnd as far as the Card thing went, I basically balanced it out personal guilt-wise by donating an amount equal to the Shadow Complex purchase price to the ACLU.03/05/2015 - 9:44pm
TechnogeekWelp, look like the Gerberghazi crowd is going to have to use Bing now. https://twitter.com/googlecloud/status/57365320825126093003/05/2015 - 9:42pm
Goth_SkunkAhh! I misinterpreted your statement about being left with almost every game in existence. I interpreted it as 'If you boycott games he's been involved with, you're boycotting almost all of them.'03/05/2015 - 9:31pm
Andrew EisenGoth - Card has been involved with only a small handful of games so if one were to boycott games for his involvement, they wouldn't be missing out on many games.03/05/2015 - 9:29pm
Goth_Skunk@Craig: Only if you're not interested in seeing it end.03/05/2015 - 9:27pm
Craig R.Instead of calling people the "anti gamergate faction", you could just call them "sane"03/05/2015 - 9:23pm
Goth_SkunkWhat do you mean 'almost every game in existence'? Card is a writer, not a game developer.03/05/2015 - 9:18pm
Andrew EisenBut I too wonder how many people who cry boycott actually follow through. I vaguely remember a few years ago a bunch of people boycotting one of the CoD games and were all found playing it on Steam.03/05/2015 - 7:53pm
Andrew EisenAn interesting quandary but not equivalent as boycotting games that Card was involved with leaves you with... well, almost every game in existence.03/05/2015 - 7:51pm
 

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