Atlanta-based gaming studio, Moneyhorse Games, is creating a new video game starring North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. The idea behind this is to let gamers see what it feels like to hold the whole world in their hands, while playing as the dictator on their mobile devices.
“Glorious Leader”, the name of the video game, is a retro-style game that will also be released for PCs.
Jeff Miller, the CEO of Moneyhorse Games, described the idea behind the creation of the game as “carefully walk the line of satire without being an apologist for the regime.”
A retro trailer, complete with classic games music, begins by showing pictures of Kim Jong-un with subtitles, which say he has for years prepared “for the moment to destroy the capitalist swine”.
Miller says the company launched details of the game now to gauge reaction and get feedback from gamers about what they should add to the game. He says he has been surprised by two things: firstly that there hasn’t been a big negative backlash, and secondly, by the number of South Koreans asking whether the game will be coming to their country.
Glorious Leader! is not the first game about North Korea. In 2012, Koryo Tours teamed up with students from Kim Chaek University of Technology within North Korea to create Pyongyang Racer, an arcade-style game which allows players to drive round the streets of a mocked-up capital, designed to whet the appetite of potential tourists to the nation, rather than entertain seasoned gamers.
Video games are also popular within North Korea. According to Daily NK, there is a growing enthusiasm for video games among the young North Korean elite, with combat games proving most popular. Most are imported from China, but a recent reported crackdown on foreign imports could scupper their enjoyment.