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Religions 2018, 9(6), 169; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060169

‘Things Greater than Thou’: Post-Apocalyptic Religion in Games

Institute for Media Studies, KU Leuven, Leuven 3000, Belgium
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Received: 3 May 2018 / Revised: 18 May 2018 / Accepted: 18 May 2018 / Published: 23 May 2018
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Abstract

In the literature on religion in games, two broad types of religion have been depicted: on the one hand, historical religions—Christian, Muslim and Buddhist narratives, tropes and symbols—and, on the other hand, fiction-based religion, referring to fantasy, myth and popular culture. In this article we aim to describe, analyze and explain the emergence of a new, unacknowledged repertoire. Building on two case studies—Fallout 3 and Horizon: Zero Dawn—we argue that modern technology (computers, AI, VR, androids) itself is becoming a sacred object of veneration in fiction, specifically in post-apocalyptic games that imagine man-made annihilation. Although the themes and topics differ, this emergent form of techno-religion in game narratives is generally located in a post-apocalyptic setting. Although they are fictitious, we conclude that such narratives reflect developments in real life, in which technology such as artificial intelligence is feared as an increasingly powerful, opaque force. View Full-Text
Keywords: post-apocalypse; video games; religion in games; Horizon: Zero Dawn; Fallout 3 post-apocalypse; video games; religion in games; Horizon: Zero Dawn; Fallout 3
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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de Wildt, L.; Aupers, S.; Krassen, C.; Coanda, I. ‘Things Greater than Thou’: Post-Apocalyptic Religion in Games. Religions 2018, 9, 169.

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