I've posted about subversive books before (Where I've found fiction books that cleverly hide a good common-sense dose of wisdom in a story line)
Now it's time to talk about subversive computer games.
I got my hands on a new game out there, called Freelancer, and aside from the great graphics, etc, etc, etc it's got a decent enough storyline.
Here's where I find myself hugely amused. You see, the game is pretty much a take-off on current events in the world. The game starts out announcing that there has been an unprovoked attack on a major dignitary in the Liberty-governed area of the Sirius Sector, on the system capital, Manhattan (so think Sept 11th in NYC). The police forces are called on the carpet for what appears to have been a major intelligence blunder as a shadowy terrorist group managed to somehow bypass heavy security.
The fun starts when you find out that there's a Fort Bush, and a major wanted criminal named "Sean Ashcroft" that you have to chase after. I won't be spoiling it too much to say that the ironic part is when you are later informed that Sean Ashcroft's criminal record has somehow vanished.
As well, Liberty has a privatized police force, whereas the other governments retain direct control over their police, and there are people that complain about mass layoffs and how these actions have forced people into crime just to keep the bills paid. You also see occasional news items about homeless citizens of some planets petitioning for redress.
I'm amazed Digital Anvil managed to get the game out like this, since it clearly is based on current events and pokes some fun at some major figures.
Edited to add:
Heeheehee, it gets even better. Check out the "intel data" on the Freelancer website about Liberty:
As the capitol of the Liberty System with a population of 220 million people, Manhattan was the first human colony to be established in the year 1 A.S. Since its founding, Manhattan has served as an important hub for the conquest of Sirius as, little by little, Libertonian explorers took to the dangerous task of exploring and settling other planets and other systems in the name of Liberty's "manifest destiny." Today Manhattan is still the vital heart of Liberty, sitting at the center of a vast commercial network.
It also says elsewhere that the other systems are "suspicious that Liberty may not entirely fairly enjoy its superiority, 800 years later".
[ 23 March 2003: Message edited by: DrConway ]