A few weeks back, leaders from some Hindu religious organizations protested against the new PS2 game –Hanuman: Boy Warrior and are planning to call for a worldwide boycott of Sony products. It was felt that it “trivialized” one of the main deities of the Hindi religion.
The game is only available in the Indian market and happens to be the first console title to be entirely developed by an Indian firm.
Largely waged through an e-mail, the protest has been led by Rajan Zed, the president of Universal Society of Hinduism. Zed has given Sony until May 21, 2009 to respond to the game protest. Sony officials say they would be looking into the issue however, they have not yet responded.
“If nothing was heard by Hindu leaders from Sony by May 21, then all the protesting Hindu groups and leaders would re-evaluate the protest and announce the future course, which might include calling for boycott of Sony products world over by Hindus and other likeminded people and supporters.”
Gist of the game
This game is has been developed by a Hyderabad-based company – Aurona Technologies Limited, and tells the “growing up” story of Hanuman, where he starts as a powerless being and regains his powers through the game. IIN the game, Hanuman meets Sadhus (Sages) and learns more about his powers. As e moves along, he realizes that he himself is Hanuman. From there on he starts regaining his powers, one by one. He finally gets his Gadhaa (mace) which is his primary weapon. He uses it to gain the ability to fight the Asuras and for every Asura he kills, he can accumulate their life force into his Gadhaa.
“Reimagining Hindu scriptures and deities for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees. Controlling and manipulating Lord Hanuman with a joystick/ button/keyboard/mouse was denigration. Lord Hanuman was not meant to be reduced to just a “character” in a video game to solidify company / products base in the growing economy of India.”
Offended… are you?
Now the question that crops up is – how many Hindus are actually offended by this? The small sect of religious leaders from a religious point-of-view… definitely yes! But what about the rest of the Hindu population? I can’t speak for others, so I will just wait for your comments and thoughts on this.
But in any case, I am sure not many people will be interested in playing the game after the poor reviews it has received for its inferior character modeling and jerky animations and design.
Link: ps2 games