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How do you feel about works of fiction where...

#1Lord_IchmaelPosted 1/27/2013 1:23:32 PM(edited)
A monotheistic/top god is portrayed as an antagonist/villain? I'm asking this on a few levels:

1.Works of fiction where a fictional monotheistic/top God is a villain.

2 .Works where a non-fictional top God is a villain

3. Works where YOUR God in particular is a villain.

Examples (I'll include spoiler tags in case anyone cares):

-In Fire Emblem Radiant Dawn, the main god of Tellius Ashera, having removed her emotions, decides to destroy the world she created after concluding that it is hopelessly corrupt and beyond saving, although her separated emotions Yune is still a good god and in the best ending they merge back together.
-In Final Fantasy X, the god worshipped by the Yevon religion, Yu Yevon, is responsible for the eternal creation and re-creation of Sin, a monster that attacks civilizations not becaused they sinned, but to keep them from becoming a technological threat from the dream version of Yu Yevon's own lost civiliation.


-In God of War, Zeus, the top Greek god, becomes villainous in 2 and is the main villain for both 2 and 3, although main character Kratos isn't much better.

-In Shin Megami Tensei, YHVH aka God is perhaps the overall main antagonist and the final boss a few times, although they toned it down later.
-In the book trilogy His Dark Materials, the Christian God referred to as The Authority is a fraud, an angel/alien who merely tricked people into believing he was the universe's creator, although he does sort of get deemed in the end.

I have my own idea for a game/story series that constantly goes back and forth with this concept, with some theists of various types not minding it and others... really minding it. So I'm just curious to hear what everyone (of all beliefs and non-beliefs) on this board thinks of this notion.
#2Faust_8Posted 1/27/2013 1:06:19 PM
That's a neat idea...but I haven't played those games so I can't really contribute. :(
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#3Hustle KongPosted 1/27/2013 1:54:51 PM
It depends. The idea itself does not do anything for me either way.
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#4Moorish_IdolPosted 1/27/2013 2:27:08 PM
I always thought that fighting a god in games is a bit silly, because during said fights the god always seems to have some glaring weakness or simple pattern to abuse. They don't come across as an all-powerful god like they should.

Then again, I suppose hopelessly fighting an immortal god would be a bit boring for a video game...
#5LastManStandingPosted 1/27/2013 2:30:32 PM
One day, I hope in Christ the scales on your eyes fall off and you will see, I hope in Christ it will happen before your judgment day.
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#6Wandering__HeroPosted 1/27/2013 2:33:00 PM
I only find it offensive when its a direct take that at Christianity.

I do get annoyed when all the priests are obviously evil but apparently everyone on the planet is too stupid to realise that, especially when the game is excessively heavy handed and patronizing about this, ala Suikoden Terikass. It also doesn't help that whoever wrote it has the WORST understanding of Christiainity and Determinism I have eve rseen, and that the game is targeted at teenagers, but they need to make it easier than Final Fantasy Mystic quest, because that was the kind of audience they were aiming for.

As for God Of War .... the roman Gods were all massive jerks, which the game reflects... so yeah
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#7Auron772Posted 1/27/2013 3:19:30 PM
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#8fudrickPosted 1/27/2013 3:25:24 PM
Wandering__Hero posted...
As for God Of War .... the roman Gods were all massive jerks, which the game reflects... so yeah

You've clearly played the series <.<
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#9MorrowindQuotesPosted 1/27/2013 3:41:58 PM

Morrowind is holy country, and its gods are flesh and blood. Collectively, these gods are called the Tribunal, the triune ALMSIVI, three deities exemplifying Dunmeri virtues. Almalexia is Mercy, Vivec is Mastery, and Sotha Sil is Mystery. Vivec is easily the most popular of them all. Vivec is also the most public, for he is the beloved Warrior-Poet of the True People, paradoxically beautiful and bloody. Vivec is an artistic violence. Vivec is represented in Temple literature and liturgy as one of the divine kings of Morrowind. He guards the sacred Velothi subcontinent of Vvardenfell, and stands guard over Red Mountain, the gate to hell. He is part of the holy Tribunal, a god of the New Temple, and an aspect of the blessed and righteous ALMSIVI.

This explicit presentation of Vivec the Guardian God-King and Warrior-Poet is the one most accessible and familiar to Westerners. However, it is important to remember that Vivec is also known to the Dunmer as the transcendent evolution of the daedra that anticipated him, Black Hands Mephala, a foundation figure of the earliest Chimer. This darker side of Vivec does not appear in the popular literature and liturgy, but is instinctively understood and accepted by the Dunmer as an integral part of Vivec's divine aspect. A more complete appreciation of the complex nature of Vivec requires an understanding of the nature of Vivec's Anticipation, Mephala, and the darker themes represented by this Daedra Lord's modes and motivations.

Who is Mephala?

Each of the three Tribunes of the Temple were represented in the dawn of Chimeri culture by their Anticipations. These Anticipations are known to the West as the sinister Daedra Lords Azura, Boethiah, and Mephala. In Temple theology, however, Azura is the Anticipation of Sotha Sil, the Mage-Lord of Almsivi. Boethiah is the Anticipation of Almalexia, Almsivi's Mother and Lady. Mephala is the Anticipation of Vivec. According to legend, under the guidance of these three Daedra Lords, a discontented throng of Altmer transformed themselves into a new people and founded a new land. And while Boethiah, the so-called Prince of Plots, provided the revolutionary methods needed to bring about this transformation, Mephala was the shadowy implementer of those methods.

As known in the West, Mephala is the demon of murder, sex, and secrets. All of these themes contain subtle aspects and violent ones (assassination/genocide, courtship/orgy, tact/poetic truths); Mephala is understood paradoxically to contain and integrate these contradictory themes. And all these subtle undercurrents and contradictions are present in the Dunmer concepts of Vivec, even if they are not explicitly described and explained in Temple doctrine.

The Dunmer do not envision Lord Vivec as a creature of murder, sex, and secrets. Rather, they conceive of Lord Vivec as benevolent king, guardian warrior, poet-artist. But, at the same time, unconsciously, they accept the notion of darker, hidden currents beneath Vivec's benevolent aspects.

For example, one of the most striking persistent myths associated with Vivec is the story that Vivec conspired with his co-rulers Almalexia and Sotha Sil in the murder of Lord Nerevar, the greatest of Dunmer heroes and generals. The story is derived from Ashlander oral tradition, and is flatly contradicted by all Temple traditions. Nonetheless, the tale is firmly established in the Dunmer imagination, as if to say, "Of course Vivec would never have conspired to murder Lord Nerevar, but it happened so long ago... who can know the truth?"

The public face of Vivec is benign, sensitive, compassionate, and protective of his followers. At the same time, the Dunmer seem irrationally comfortable with the hidden aspects of Vivec, the darker components of violence, lust, and conspiracy associated the more primitive and ruthless impulses of the Anticipations.
#10lastheroPosted 1/27/2013 3:53:07 PM
Moorish_Idol posted...
I always thought that fighting a god in games is a bit silly, because during said fights the god always seems to have some glaring weakness or simple pattern to abuse. They don't come across as an all-powerful god like they should.

Then again, I suppose hopelessly fighting an immortal god would be a bit boring for a video game...

Oftentimes, gods in such mythologies are really just powerful beings that can at least be defeated. Being a god doesn't necessarily mean you're all-powerful, or even immortal, really. I think Ares was even beaten in a few Greek myths.
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