- (Image: www.kumagames.com)
If photos and videos of Muammar Gaddafi's death at the hands of rebels have not shown enough blood and carnage, a new video game developed by a reality game company that has collaborated with the U.S. Department of Defense will allow kids to relive the capture and murder of the ousted Libyan dictator over and over again.
The new game, "Fall of Sirte: Gaddafi's Last Stand," is the latest episode in the "Kuma War II" series from Kuma Games, which has been creating episodic first-person shooter games based on real military events like the Iraq War and the assassination of Osama bin Laden in collaboration with the Department of Defense since 2003, according to the Los Angeles Times. "Fall of Sirte" allows gamers to hunt and kill Col. Muammar Gadaffi and can be downloaded by anyone with a computer without age verification completely free of charge.
The video game takes gamers into the throes of the Libyan uprising and the search for Gaddafi. Playing the game from the point of view of a Libyan rebel, the gamer is able to "relive Muammar Gaddafi's final take-down and the Libyan rebels' triumph with this brand new multiplayer mission!" according to Kuma Games' website.
Players also get help from Predator drones that help force Gaddafi out of hiding and "When the smoke clears," Kuma Games promises, "the former leader lays dead."
Being released so soon after Gaddafi's actual death is a trademark of Kuma Games, which also made headlines when it released a shoot-and-kill game soon after the death of Osama bin Laden.
Kuma Games makes its games available for free, but also tracks, analyzes, stores, and reserves the right to sell players' results to outside parties. According to Kuma's website, data about players is stored on Kuma's servers, including messages exchanged with other players, time players spend on the site, responses to surveys, and play results.
In Kuma Games' terms of usage, the company states it is authorized "to disclose any information about you...in our sole discretion, [we] believe necessary or appropriate."
Other video game companies have been known to use games based on war to track data in order to serve as a recruitment tool for the U.S. Military.
Col. Casey Wardynski, a military economist who was a pivotal force in the U.S. Army-led project to create "America's Army," a video game that served as a recruitment tool, told the Sacramento News & Review in 2003, "Suppose you played extremely well, and you stayed in the game an extremely long time, you might just get an e-mail seeing if you'd like any additional information on the Army."
Not only do video games help the government see who might be a good fit for the military, but the games also encourage young men to believe the military might be a good fit for them.
"One study found that the game had more impact on actual recruits than all other forms of Army advertising combined," Military professional and journalist Peter Singer told NPR.
Kuma Games could not be reached for comment.