In this video essay I examine the themes of neo-liberal decay and Indigenous resistance present in the photography game Umurangi Generation. Photography games are a video game genre that make taking photos through an in-game camera the mechanical focus. This non-violent engagement prioritizes player expression and exploration, rather than the action and combat focused games that are typical of the medium. Umurangi Generation was released in May 2020 by Australia based developer Nephtali Faulkner and his team ORIGAME DIGITAL. Using a combination of Indigenous knowledge and academic theory ORIGAME DIGITAL aims to create games which challenge conventional video game design and western cultural assumptions. In an industry where games are regularly derided as ‘political’ for including minority representation, Umurangi Generation stands out by being unapologetic in its anti-Capitalist politics. Umurangi Generation uses environmental storytelling to make a scathing critique of Neo-liberal responses to modern crises such as climate change, police violence, and government response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Recommended Citation / Citation recommandée
"Umurangi Generation: The Red Skies of Neo-Liberalism."
The Goose, vol. 19
, article 5,