What's Wrong With the Niche Market? The 'Guitar Praise' Problem With the announcement of Guitar Praise, the Guitar Hero knockoff with a Christian twist, came a new round of 'Isn't there a commandment about stealing? Surely that applies to IP, right?'. Simon Parkin took a look at why Christian-themed gaming is so maligned; who cares if people are catering to a niche market? He does concede that in some cases, like the really awful looking Zoo Race (Destructoid aptly summed up the results of that little debacle as looking 'like someone handed [the designer] a bag of cocaine and a Quake mod and said "Go crazy."') it's less about Christianity and more about poorly made games:
When religions engage in this kind of spin it always feels a little insidious and it's this that the wider world objects to when they hear of products such as Guitar Praise and Zoo Race. Indeed, the following text, used at the end of the Zoo Race shareware demo, demonstrates just this: "Buy the fun game that the big name publishers refused to finance or even show you. Why wait? You can do it, because you are a fun loving creation of God." Post Passion of the Christ, big name publishers are only too happy to publish and promote ‘Christian'-targeted content if there's enough money to be made. In the case of Zoo Race big name publishers refuse to finance it not on ideological grounds but simply because it's awful. As games writer Kieron Gillen pointed out at the time: "F**king big name publishers. We hate those guys too. Clearly, it couldn't have anything to do with the glitchy animation, complete lack of physics, my-first-Quake-level geometry and the fact the whole thing is completely batshit insane."
Considering religions have provided the inspiration for some of the greatest artistic works the world over — Christianity is no exception here — it's a little baffling that game designers wishing to cater to the Christian game consuming public can't do much better than knockoffs of big secular titles and/or something like Zoo Race. I suspect the (often hilarious) lack of quality or clearly 'borrowing' from big AAA titles is what gets most people's hackles up, and that it doesn't matter if it's a secular or religious game. Guitar Hero Praise: What's Wrong With The ‘Christian' Videogame? [GameSetWatch]