This War Of Mine Added To Poland's High School Reading List

Illustration for article titled This War Of Mine Added To Poland's High School Reading List
Image: 11 bit studios

This War of Mine, the wartime survival game from Polish developer 11 bit studios, will be part of the recommended reading list for Polish high school students during the 2020-2021 school year.

“Games are works of culture,” 11 Bit Studios CEO Grzegorz Miechowski wrote in the company’s official statement. “Modern ones, natural and attractive for the young generation. Games speak a language instinctively understandable by them—the language of interaction. Using this language, games can talk about everything—emotions, truth, the fight between good and evil, humanity, suffering.”

Unlike many games in this notoriously war-positive industry, This War of Mine focuses on civilians just trying to get by as the world collapses around them. The developers were inspired by several real-world conflicts, including the four-year siege of Sarajevo during the Bosnian War and Poland’s own Warsaw Uprising during World War II. This War of Mine is an affecting, bleak experience that, rather than glorify violence, depicts the harsh reality of war for those caught in the middle.


This War of Mine will be a free addition to Polish high school curricula when the country’s school year starts back up later this year. It is being recommended for fields such as sociology, ethics, philosophy, and history. Due to the game’s age rating, it will only be available to Polish students aged 18 and above, with Miechowsk noting “the game has an 18+ age rating in most countries due to the subject nature it tackles.”

“I’m proud to say 11 bit studios’ work can add to the development of education and culture in our country,” wrote Miechowsk. “This can be a breakthrough moment for all artists creating games all around the world.”

Staff Writer, Kotaku

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Sword of Mexico

I’m surprised they would let this game be a required reading, not because of the medium, but because of some of the moral dilemmas it poses to the players.

I did have a horrid time once, where my character was scrounging for food in a supermarket. Only to hear voices behind a door. Other scavengers maybe? I was in no mood to fight for resources.
But then overhearing the conversation it was a military solder attempting to rape a woman.
I mean... what would you do in that situation? Try and stand up against the man committing evil, while knoing he has armor, and guns on him as you had street clothing and maybe the element of surprise as your arsenal? Or sulk away and reap the bounty of the super market for your other survivors and feeling regret and guilt for the rest of your life?

The biggest thing about video games as a medium is now that I have experienced a virtual aspect of such decisions, I pray and hope I never have to make that same decision in real life.