Gaming

'Six Days in Fallujah,' a game no one wants, is getting a release anyway

The "realistic" Iraq War title was shelved by Konami back in 2009, only to be resurrected by Victura and Highwire Games.

Six Days in Fallujah video game screenshot YouTube
YouTube

The Iraq War technically ended on December 15, 2011. We say "technically" because, as of last month, there were still around 2,500 U.S. troops still stationed in the country, and we may never, ever, truly leave the place. Don't believe us? Try finding one nation previously engaged in a war with America that doesn't still host some of our military bases. Hell, we've got spots in Spain, and we last went to war with them in 1898.

Anywho, despite the U.S. nearing its decade "anniversary" of the Iraq War's "conclusion," it's a conflict that still permeates our American cultural subconscious — from populist resentment that helped fuel both MAGA cultism and leftist sentiment, to the tragic opioid epidemic. In honor of that, what better time to resurrect a controversial, long-canceled first-person shooter billing itself as the most realistic depiction of war's brutality, madness, and terror? Welcome back to the party, Six Days in Fallujah.

"War is hell" but make it a selling point — Americans love first-person military shooters almost as much as we love deploying our young into real-life military engagements, and while Six Days in Fallujah was far from the first video game to be set in Iraq, it was arguably one of the first to brag about bringing "players closer to the uncertainty and tactics of modern combat than other video games have explored" within the Iraq War. Originally produced by Konami, Six Days in Fallujah was set to release over a decade ago, but was abandoned following a sizable public outcry from critics, military personnel, and anyone else still at least somewhat tethered to reality and decency.

The IP was eventually acquired by Victura and Highwire Games, who last week announced their intent to finally finish and release the game at some point later this year. "Six Days in Fallujah aims to be the most authentic military shooter to date and to tell these military and civilian stories with the integrity they deserve," Victura reps explained in their press release, apparently failing to realize that rendering atrocities' victims into props within a literal game is objectively antithetical to any notion of "integrity."

How about listening to the people who were there? — As an actual Iraq War vet told Kotaku back in 2009, "A 'realistic' war game is not going to be fun — who wants to play a game where you sit around doing nothing, punctuated by raiding the wrong house and tearing apart the home of an irate Iraqi family, or sitting around on a convoy until your vehicle gets hit by an IED and your character dies, with no clear enemy in sight? Who wants to play that?"

There's no word on which titles Victura and Highwire are planning next. Perhaps a Twin Towers escape room VR game to "honor" 9/11 first responders and victims? Or maybe an RTS in which you control Capitol police attempting to fend off MAGA rioters? Just a friendly(-fire) suggestion: If you feel your shoot 'em up video game deserves a section on its website literally just titled "Why?" then maybe that's a question you should be asking yourself, and not us.