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God botherers: the five worst religions in videogames

Moving in very mysterious ways

I have a healthy respect for religion and the religious, and believe it or not, that's quite the achievement. I'm a videogames journalist, you see, and if there's one line of thought videogames seem determined to press on us at every opportunity, it's that all religions are the work of the Devil. That's to say, an anthropomorphic personification of the human capacity for wrong-doing. Given my level of exposure, I should really be out in the streets torching churches and hanging crosses upside down, or something.

Spot a videogame character who reckons there's more to life than what's physically apparent, and there's a reasonable chance you're looking straight at the main antagonist. Even the positive portrayals are usually undercut by a fatal thread of na´vetÚ. Here are a few of my least favourite takes...

Unitology (Dead Space)
You don't have to be crazy to join Dead Space's thinly veiled rebooting of Scientology, but it'll certainly help you ignore the sensation of being devoured, minced and reconstituted as an undead killing machine. Unitologists like to call this "transcendence", the unification of the individual soul with eternity. Rational human beings call it "getting all f**ked up by screeching aberrations so you can do the same to your friends and loved ones". As dubious as their beliefs appear, however, you can't beat a Unitologist for door-to-door sermonizing. It's hard to "agree to disagree" when the other party's got whacking great machetes for elbows.

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