Violent video games have long been debated in society, but this one has taken a turn from violent to extremely disrespectful.
In a new virtual reality simulator game, players are able to live out the horrific events of 9/11 from inside the North Tower. The game was created by a group of student developers in France, and is titled “[08:46]” – the exact time the first plane hit the World Trade Center.
Like any other simulation on the reality system Oculus Rift, participants get a first-hand account, and will witness the building erupting into flames and people scrambling to safety. The haunting video shows panicking workers trying to make phone calls, crying, and even breaking windows, according to the NY Daily News.
The game has rightfully received a lot of backlash, especially from those personally affected by 9/11.
“I’m sure there are sick people who will get a cheap thrill from this, but people should know it’s not a make-believe thing. In real life, it was someone’s husband or wife jumping and leaving behind a family,” said Denise Matuza, whose husband Walter Matuza died in the North Tower.
But the creators stand behind their game.
“We hoped to help people build an emotional connection to the victims of the attacks,” producer Pierre-Yves Revellin said.
“We would want people to think about 9/11 from the victims’ internal points of view … rather than the external, tele-visual point of view, which seems cold to us,” he said. Revellin said he visited Ground Zero after the attack, and his team did a lot of research and interviewed a 9/11 survivor from Canada.
Anthony Krafft, the creative director on the project, admits the game has a bleak ending. Tech Insider reports:
“As in real life, you can’t witness the first crash as you are on the south side of the North Tower and the plane hit the north side. You can witness the second crash on the South Tower later. [But] being on the 101st floor, you can’t escape the building (all stairs are blocked). It ends either with a slow fade to black representing suffocation or by the jump of the player,” he said.
Anthony understands how powerful, yet controversial the game is, but believes he and his team created a genuine approach to exploring the topic of 9/11.