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It has always been my passion to develop video games with stories that have the power to inspire people to do good and be peaceful and creative in their approaches in life. I believe that the right video game can inspire you to develop emotions and become creative in that. Your mind now has experienced something great and has thus lead to the expansion of your mindset.

Here are my personal experiences with good video games:

  • My English skills have improved tremendously. I acknowledge that this benefit is not exclusive to video games but it was my experience nonetheless.
  • Having experienced great stories, I have learnt that good stories that involve the humans and their glories and shortfalls have the potential to inspire you and expand your mindset. Stories like Assassin's Creed has taught me something about history and how war and greed leads to corruption and downfall. Stories like The Last of Us and Ether One have taught me the human nature's merits and demerits.

Now I do admit that these benefits are not exclusive to video games but let us not ignore the fact that video games are the next generation of storytelling immersion which increases the chances and effectiveness of the message that you're trying to spread. This is because video games allow player immersion through absolute control of the character that you experience the story with. The video gaming audience is growing amazingly by the passing minute and thus video games are potential platforms to spread the basic goodwill of the human ideology.

Now think about this: we have seen so many narrow-minded people that believe anything they hear and fail to open their minds to the bigger picture. It is a popular European belief that Islam is an extremist religion and all that bogus while it is our narrow-minded belief that every European and American wants Islam and Muslims to perish. I have experienced so many amazing stories in the forms of video games and movies and books that my mindset has significantly improved and I will not take anything without reason. I used to be like this. A person who just believed in Islam because his family wanted him to believe. Ever since I have started reading about science and human science and playing related games and seeing related movies, I have quite an appetite for research. This lead me to research my religion and thus I came closer to my religion.

I admit, I still am being far from perfect, quite far actually, but that does not mean I should not inspire other people.

It is my utmost passion in life to give people a vivid sense of morality and to try my hand in improving our society. If bad people exist to spread mischief in this world, then I am glad to be able to make sure I represent the people striving for complete peace and serenity and defeating Shaytaan. My passion and general interest in games, has lead me to decide that I want to become a game designer.

So here is my question: in the long process of game development, there comes a stage where we have to write the amazing story we're supposed to write and design characters to tell this story. This involves drawing and 3d modeling. Please bear in mind that I want to design games, which does not necessarily involve drawing and modeling but it involves writing the story and designing the game mechanics. So do you think this career choice is haram even if my intentions are of goodwill and I won't be directly physically involved in the arts aspect of the game?

I apologize for my long query, but this has bothered me for quite a long time and I have to find my answer. I have done extensive research but I want a definitive answer to convince myself. I thank you very much for your answer in advance.

May Allah guide us, and help us better ourselves. May Allah save us from the hellfire and grant us the Paradise. Aameen And Allah knows best, and all praises belong to him.

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  • If you want to become a "game designer" then how can you be not involved in the arts perspective of the game?
    – Mustaghees
    Jun 17 '15 at 10:57
  • I mean physically. I will not be physically drawing characters and not be modeling them. My only interest is writing a great story and designing the game world with inanimate objects, leaving the modeling and animation to my team mates. But since they will be modeling and sketching the world and its inhabitants based on my stories, I sort of figure this would be a bad thing. But I am really interested in inspiring people through the art of storytelling and video games. What do you think? Jun 17 '15 at 20:26
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It all depends on what kind of video game you are planning to make. What contents it will include and what message it will deliver. Also, not that if the video game is socially unacceptable to some remote part of the world, it is going to possibly have some negative elements in some way.

If you are making texture or models that are unethical and not socially acceptable, then you can understand what you are dealing with.

If you record sentences containing insults such as involving the "f" word and so on, then that too is unethical and not permissible in Islam as it crosses the bounds of good manners.

Simulating murderous and inhumane concepts can be as bad as Islam says about it. The nature of it depends on what kind of subject is there.

Black magic concepts are also prominent in many MMORPGs, RPGs, and single player games. Take Skyrim, Witcher and Diablo for instance in which you have to craft game items using magic, enchantments, and animal body parts.

1. Lets take Grand Theft Auto (GTA) Series. GTA series. The following are very controversial aspects of the game.

  • Over the top Violence
  • Thievry simulation
  • Cursing
  • Racism
  • Using Firearms over Civilians and getting away with it and repeating the process.
  • Fighting/Murdering Law Enforcement Agency (in the game)
  • Destruction of public property
  • Nudity, prostitution and almost everything related to it
  • Materialism

These things are not only socially unacceptable, but also Haram in Islam.

2. Lets take a rather less controversial game, The Sims Series.

  • Partial Nudity
  • Bedroom events
  • Unmarried couples
  • Mature concepts for younger audience simulated in a "fun" way.

These are points are not permissible. It is a pretty good game/simulator otherwise.

3. Speaking of simulators, lets take a very good game called "Surgery Simulator"

The game is very light hearted, the player learns come interesting concepts and mostly, it is just fun. The concept is to help a dying patient after all. I don't think there is any problem with this game other than wasting precious time, but it can also be a learning experience for many people.

4. Test Drive Unlimited

Other than some, unacceptable clothing choices and materialism concepts in the latter versions, the game is brilliant. It can actually be used to learn driving. It is something that once should play to learn.

I am sure this will give you some ideas on what to do.

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  • Your answer really shines with me. That's exactly what I was looking for Alhumdulillah. Jun 17 '15 at 20:27
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    In my stories, bad people do the bad things so the audience knows I am not encouraging a kind of offbeat violence. Also, the core aspects of my games will not be violence but if the story demands, I will be sure to keep it within educational and enlightening limits. Jun 17 '15 at 20:29
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I want to remind you of surah al muminun 3rd verse:

"and who turn away from all that is vain"

Isn't wasting precious time with games vain? For me the answer is "yes"

Let's compare times about learning great stories:

  1. In a game you might spend about 100-500 hours to go until end of the game in order to learn the story.
  2. If you watch videos or read stories for learning great stories the time will be about 1-25 hours.

If you decide in option 2, you can use for example (100 - 1) - (500 - 25) = 99 - 475 hours for learning other stories or learning some skills.

How about making a great story?

  1. Being part of a a game development project (to tell a great story) might take 1 to 3 years of your time.
  2. Meanwhile writing or making a video/documentary might take also same amount of time.
  3. But think about how much time people will spend to go through your great story? What if your game is a hit and 1million people finish it? People will spend their precious time let's say 1million people * 300 hours = 300 million hours + those who didn't finish. Think about the time you're causing the people to use.
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I'm no islamic scholar. I can understand if you make a game that contains haram things like but not limited to, music, nudity, alcoholism, drugs that may be encouraging haram behaviors. However, saying you should not make games because people may waste time on it is that same as saying don't make a hammer because someone may kill someone with it. All objects in life can be used in a haram way, and many of those things can be used for their intended purpose. So if someone can't practice self control and play your game for only 30 minutes or an hour that is not the fault of the game but the fault of the individual...trust me whether you make your game or not...they will get addicted to something else and waste their time, you should not be liable for how someone chooses to spend time. Where does it say in the Quran or Hadith that you are responsible for someone else's actions? Even parents are free from this to some extent because they can't force their kids to be muslim...the kids could decide to rebel.

So maybe take a game like geometry dash or mario. I personally don't think fps games are haram despite the killing happening in them...its not real anyone who associates a virtual world with reality needs to see a psychiatrist.

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