Victura, the publisher of the controversial Iraq War shooter Six Days in Fallujah, has acknowledged the political themes inseparable from the content of its game. The company's CEO, Peter Tamte, also walked back previous comments about the game being apolitical.
"We understand the events recreated in Six Days in Fallujah are inseparable from politics," Victura said in a statement. The publisher said the game would incorporate both gameplay and documentary footage in telling its story. The documentary footage will incorporate interviews with "26 Iraqi civilians and dozens of service members," the company says.
"The documentary segments discuss many tough topics, including the events and political decisions that led to the Fallujah battles as well as their aftermath."
Six Days in Fallujah depicts the second invasion of Fallujah by United States forces. The game has been criticized for potentially glorifying American military forces accused of a variety of war crimes.
Among those alleged crimes are the use of white phosphorous, a chemical weapon condemned by international law. Victura clarified it would not allow players to use white phosphorous as a weapon in-game, but would address its use in the documentary segments.
Tamte, who had previously claimed Six Days would avoid taking a political stance, has also acknowledged the clear political connotations of making art about a real-world conflict.
"Anybody making a game about the Iraq War obviously understands these events are intertwined with politics," Tamte told IGN. "What we've said is that we're not trying to make a statement about how the war in Iraq began. Instead, we are focused on this battle, the events that led up to this battle, and we want the people who were in Fallujah during this battle to speak for themselves through the game."
Tamte is presumably referring to the broadly false claim that the Iraqi government had obtained weapons of mass destruction, a claim the Bush administration pushed to justify the invasion.
Six Days in Fallujah was originally announced and canned in 2009. Tamte was also the CEO of Atomic Games, the studio behind that first incarnation of Six Days.