Freedom is as essential to life as air, and these games totally understand that.
In the turbulent times, we are living in the concept of freedom is more important than ever. When we as people feel like the iron fist of tyranny is ever looming above our heads and preparing to strike at any second, making a run through a videogame whose central theme is liberation can be more than welcome break from reality. There’s nothing wrong with a little disassociation when the time calls for it, but with millions of people celebrating National Freedom Day, it’s important to keep in mind those who are living without it. Sure, playing video games will not free the captive, but carrying radical ideas even within the digital realm is still extremely important. So it is with honor to and in the spirit of we name the top-5 where liberation is the theme.
Final Fantasy VII
With the remake of the game due out this year and the remake of Mega Ran’s seminal FFVII tribute album coming as well it seems like this game might just be beloved for a reason. In the story of the game, Avalanche forms up to fight off the evil corporation Shinra, who is trying to drain the resources of an entire planet in pursuit of profit and power. Sound like any place you know? With global warming and natural resources being such huge factors in the real world today its seems so much more than appropriate for a game like this to come back around and remind us what a small group of determined people can do against a seemingly unstoppable goliath if they are will to try hard enough.
Assassins Creed III: Liberation
Assassins Creed III is a wonderful game with a terrific story. The gameplay is stellar and the concept of the Assassins who believe in free will, taking on the templars who value control is a classic tale told time and again to great acclaim. Tie in the fascinating Assassins creed lore and the developer’s top-notch artistry and what you have is one of the greatest games of all time. The game does all that and takes it one step farther by having the main character be female. As a white man it is so easy to forget that even though tons of videogame characters look like me, that is not the reality for everyone else. So, adding a female protagonist into a game about liberation is a real class move by Ubisoft.
It may not have all the glitz and glamour of modern video games but Class Struggle is an absolute classic. The 1978 board game was created by NYC professor Bertell Ollmann to educate people about the class struggle in America as he saw it, from the perspective of Marxism. As far as innovative gameplay, Class Struggle, had very little to offer, even 40-years ago. But, as far as making a fairly difficult concept quite relatable for mass consumption Ollmann hit it right out the park.
Now this is a really cool one, Liberated was made to look like a graphic novel crossed with a side scroller and they really did a tremendous job. The game deals with a complicated plot where ideals clash and complicated ideas are brought to the forefront. It may not have the pedigree of a Final Fantasy title, but it is without a doubt one of the best games around dealing with the concept of liberation.
This list isn’t just about videogames and even though Liberation is a fairly new title it is still a great one. The asymmetric hidden movement tabletop game based around liberation has only been out for two years, but it is still quite popular and espousing the ideas of freedom. With only an 18-card deck this game plays through a tale of domination and liberation with a daring force of freedom fighters taking a tyrannical tabletop dynasty hell-bent on maintaining control. Unlike its video game counterparts, however, there is no starting over if tyranny reigns at the end of the game.