A Sampling of Soldiers' Reaction to 'Fallujah'

By the title alone, you knew Six Days in Fallujah, Konami's planned "documentary-style" combat game about Iraq, would create an uproar. Unlike historical or generic conflict, this covers recent and real, about a polarising war.

It's only a concept and screenshots at this stage, but Six Days in Fallujah already has promulgated opinions that the game caters to a cavalier pro-war attitude, or can be used as antiwar propaganda. The subject matter concerns Operation Phantom Fury of November 2004, an operation described as the heaviest urban combat U.S. troops had faced since Vietnam. More than 100 U.S. and allied Iraqi fighters were killed, another 500 were wounded.

G4TV went to three members of the U.S. military on active duty, at least one having done three tours in Iraq. They were all described as interested gamers. Here are some of the reactions they gave to G4TV.

Sgt. Kevin Smith, U.S. Army: "Let it be made, and hopefully it will bolster support for military veterans by giving civilians insight into what this war was actually like for them. ... You can't just lob a frag down the street or launch a RPG at a couple of guys if you have to reload. There are restrictions on what types of weapons you can use and when. Depending on what the Rules of Engagement were for the Marines in Fallujah, and if Atomic Games has consequences for violating them, I think some gamers might find it a little frustrating."

Gunnery Sgt. John Mundy, U.S. Marine Corps: "You will have your group of idiots that try to be the terrorists and kill Americans and shout obscenities through the TV, damning American military personnel. But hey, those individuals can make fools of themselves all because of the protection that we military people give them each day. ... If someone doesn't agree with the game, they can spend their money elsewhere."

Sgt. Casey J. McGeorge, U.S. Army: "As a combat veteran and as a gamer, I have no problem whatsoever with the game... As long as it's made as realistically as possibly, I believe that this could be a good thing for both combat veterans and for the war in general."

Mundy's comments are particularly striking. As he and all of us are no doubt aware, online gaming can be a carnival of unlimited, deliberate tastelessness. Six Days in Fallujah would provide those worms with some ripe fruit, indeed.

It's not to say the game shouldn't be made, but I still come back to a feeling I haven't been able to shake about World War II sims - I know people who were in the real thing, and it wasn't entertainment for them.

Soldiers Respond to 'Six Days in Fallujah' Controversy [G4TV]


    In regards to the last paragraph - World War II is drastically different to any other war that has occured in past 150 years. Technology & weapons are far more powerful these days, there are less casualties in conflicts and wars. And Army's have more knowledge and tactics these days.

    War has changed and will continue to change.

    My point being is, a soldier that comes home from war today compared to one that suffered and survived in WWII both have in common the experience of war and probably never wishing upon anyone else. But each is different in what they experienced, what they saw.
    Back in WWII, everyone just thought war is what needed to happen to solves the worlds problem - so thats what everyone did, went to war.

    Today - we don't have to go to war. We choose to go. And today we know war doesn't solve problems and is usually a last resort. We know there shouldn't be wars. But we continue to question why there are wars and why our countries and troops are in wars. Thats the difference and thats why soldiers today will encourage such a game to teach and show where as World War Veterans have a different feeling on games based upon what they experienced.
    We may all be saying, our President or Prime Minister got us in this shit - it is wrong. and thats all we think and say and just believe, war is wrong full stop. We don't always have a reason why war is wrong except death. These soldiers who are far a game like this that illustrates real WAR - want it to be shown to say, yes death is wrong but look at we experience when we survive. Look what we go through before, during and after.

    Everyone to them selves in the long run, but you have to look at them differently.

    This game i believe if done well and true like what we have been reading, won't be like a CoD where its all fun and happiness slaughtering the enemy. This should and hopefully will be WAR>

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