Palestine vs. Israel: The Video Games

Dennis Faas's picture

Can video games be used as an instrument of peace?

Serious Games Interactive and ImpactGames hope so. They are the respective companies behind two upcoming games about the Middle East conflict, namely, "Global Conflicts: Palestine" and "PeaceMaker." At the very least, both titles are designed to be learning tools.

From the official Global Conflict: Palestine website:

"The Middle East is far away. This is your chance to get closer. Play a young journalist that has just arrived in Israel, and shape the region's future in a peaceful direction. You must complete your assignment at all cost navigating between Palestinians and Israeli sources to get your article. Will you be able to stay objective and maintain trust on both sides as the conflict escalates. What happens when people become much more than just your sources ...

While playing the game as a student or player you will learn about the conflict. You will engage with real personal stories seeing the conflicts from different perspectives and experience why the Israeli-Palestinian conflict just won't go away. The game will have extensive support for educational use with features like encyclopedia, primary sources, assessment and teacher's manual." (Source:

Global Conflicts is set in a first-person perspective. The main crux of the game is to walk around the streets and talk to people -- soldiers, terrorists, and citizens. A series of dialogue choices will be presented with each conversation.

As the game advances, your status as a journalist grows and more personal stories and complex issues unfold. At this point, you can remain objective or take sides with either Palestine or Israel.

"The violence, poverty and hope are all rendered in real-time 3-D." (Source:

And, from the official PeaceMaker website:

"PeaceMaker is a one-player game in which the player can choose to take the role of either the Israeli Prime Minister or the Palestinian President. The player must react to in-game events, from diplomatic negotiations to military attacks, and interact with eight other political leaders and social groups in order to establish a stable resolution to the conflict before his or her term in office ends." (Source:

PeaceMaker is a turn-based strategy game that uses a distant camera view -- a staple of the genre. Old news clips are used to highlight the positive and negative effects of your leadership style.

Global Conflicts: Palestine is scheduled for a March 2007 release. PeaceMaker should be released by the end of the year. It is expected to be available online for under $20. (Source:

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