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Cuban Video Game Recreates Revolutionary History 199

Hugh Pickens writes writes "The Guardian reports that Cuban programmers have unveiled a new 3D video game that puts a revolutionary twist on gaming, letting players recreate decisive clashes from the 1959 uprising in which many of their grandparents fought. 'The player identifies with the history of Cuba,' says Haylin Corujo, head of video game studies for Cuba's Youth Computing Club and leader of the team of developers who created Gesta Final – roughly translated as 'Final Heroic Deed'. 'You can be a participant in the battles that were fought in the war from '56 to '59.' The game begins with the user joining the 82 rebels who in 1956 sailed to Cuba from Mexico aboard the Granma. Players then fight their way through swamps shoulder-to-shoulder with bearded guerrillas clad in the olive green of Fidel Castro and Ernesto 'Che' Guevara to topple 1950s Cuban dictator Fulgencio Batista. The game lets you pick from three player profiles, one in an olive hat similar to the one Fidel Castro was known for, another wearing a Guevara-style beret and the last with the kind of helmet worn by the ill-fated Camilo Cienfuegos in many revolution-era photographs. Rene Vargas, a 29-year-old gamer who tried his hand at 'Gesta Final' when it was presented at a technology fair in Havana last week, says the graphics were surprisingly sophisticated. 'Bearing in mind the level of technical support there is in Cuba, it looks pretty good,' says Vargas. There are about 783,000 computers in this country of some 11 million inhabitants, according to government statistics from 2011. Private ownership of computers is low, but many Cubans access them at work, school or cyber cafes. 'We developed (it) keeping in mind the purchasing power and reality of Cubans,' says Corujo. 'It doesn't require incredible technological features.'"
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Cuban Video Game Recreates Revolutionary History

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Yeah Castro and his boy Che Che are real fucking heros. Che ran Castro's death camps and got off murdering people. HEROS!!

    • by TarPitt ( 217247 )

      You should take advantage of our amazing free enterprise system and create a counter-game called "Free Market: Chile"

      I'm sure the thrilling scenes of political opponents being thrown from helicopters into the Pacific Ocean will take your breath away.

      All in the interests of defending freedom of course

      Show those Cubans what real freedom is all about

  • by sandytaru ( 1158959 ) on Sunday March 31, 2013 @10:02AM (#43324029) Journal
    Seems no different in premise than the Call of Duty games or any of the other war games that USians love to play. Too bad it appears to be a single player game and not an MMO - that would be rather awesome.
  • Screenshots (Score:5, Informative)

    by Paul Slocum ( 598127 ) on Sunday March 31, 2013 @10:18AM (#43324109) Homepage Journal
    This article [] has screenshots and more details about gameplay.
  • by Required Snark ( 1702878 ) on Sunday March 31, 2013 @10:29AM (#43324169)
    Maybe there could be a following for this in the US. Right wingers could play to loose, and fulfill their fantasies about blotting Castro's Cuba out of history. Plus, if they can get it for free on the web, they could feel like they're ripping off Cuba.

    I wonder if it has DRM? Is it FOSS? What does that mean in a socialist state?

    Maybe the Cubans could give the game platform to Viet Nam, and they could come up with a plotline where you follow Ho Chi Min to his defeat of the imperialist US invaders. There's jungles and tropical climate in both situations, right.

    In China, they could have the Long March MMOG.

    On a somewhat more serious note, this is somewhat an exercise in jumping the shark. If you're at the point where you promote your history/ideology by turning it into a video game, it's ceased to be current experience, and has moved into the realm of cultural myths.

    In the US, the number of people who have combat experience is dwarfed by the the ranks of the FPS gamers. The real experience of war has been eclipsed by the glamorized painless video version. It's likely that the sanitized version has displaced reality in the minds of a lot of people. This can't be a good thing.

    • by dbIII ( 701233 )
      Either way the clock here shows April 1 and some Slashdot contributiors are in this timezone.

    • America's Army was released free to the public. I would imagine this game would be as well, coming from the Ministry of Communications (which strangely does not have a website).

      Cuba itself just hosted on IP conference. Here's the program [], and here's a snippet of it:

      Tuesday, March 19, 2013
      9:05 - 10:30
      Challenges of Protecting Intellectual Property on Social Networks (Software Industry)
      Rafael Ortín, Marquez, Henriquez, Ortin & Valedon,
      Slobodan Petosevic, Petosevic, Belgium

      This says nothing about Cuban

    • Obligitory grammar nitpick: surely you mean play too loose?

  • are the Tropico games banded there??

    • by thewolfkin ( 2790519 ) on Sunday March 31, 2013 @11:26AM (#43324527) Homepage Journal
      was Call of Duty banned there? I thought I recalled hearing about a mission where you assassinated Fidel Castro which I thought was rather ballsy considering Castro was alive at the time and not at war with the country. That'd be like the NAACP making a game where you assassinate former President Bush.
      • No have no idea what the NAACP is, do you?

      • by AdamHaun ( 43173 )

        was Call of Duty banned there? I thought I recalled hearing about a mission where you assassinated Fidel Castro...

        That was the first mission in Call of Duty: Black Ops. You play a special forces team sent in with the failed Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961. The goal of the mission is to kill Castro, but you only end up killing a body double. (It's based on a real historical event, so they couldn't actually have him get killed.)

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I'm sure his fanboys will make excuses, but here are the words of Che Guevara:

    "The blacks, those magnificent examples of the African race who have maintained their racial purity thanks to their lack of an affinity with bathing, have seen their territory invaded by a new kind of slave: the Portuguese."

    "The black is indolent and a dreamer; spending his meager wage on frivolity or drink; the European has a tradition of work and saving, which has pursued him as far as this corner of America and drives him to ad

    • by orzetto ( 545509 ) on Sunday March 31, 2013 @04:50PM (#43326491)

      Fanboi here. That's a passage from his younger diaries, when he had barely had contact with blacks and was certainly not politically defined as he would become later. He wrote that when he was about 24. Later, he wrote the following []:

      Those who kill their own children and discriminate daily against them because of the color of their skin; those who let the murderers of blacks remain free, protecting them, and furthermore punishing the black population because they demand their legitimate rights as free men — how can those who do this consider themselves guardians of freedom?

      It might be noted he later actually fought and bled in Congo fighting against Mobutu along Congolese revolutionaries.

      That's not to say everything he did was right. He was a proponent of death penalty, something a man of his education (he was a doctor) should have abhorred already in the 60s. He heavily miscalculated the campaigns in Congo and Bolivia. But racist? No way.

  • by Python ( 1141 ) on Sunday March 31, 2013 @03:35PM (#43326115)

    Oh boy, I sure hope this game lets you blind fold and shoot people that didnt go along with the glorious Cuban revolution! []

    • I bet you're still waiting for a computer game where you get to sit in a helicopter and mow down unarmed Vietnamese rice farmers. Oh wait, would that be a double standard I hear?
      • by khallow ( 566160 )

        Oh wait, would that be a double standard I hear?

        For who? Certainly not for the Castros who seem to have no qualms about shooting people in cold blood.

        • For anyone and everyone. There can't have been a single army in history that wasn't involved in looting, indiscriminate killing, torture or rape. And no-one seems to complain that Call of Duty doesn't have an Abu Ghraib level....

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