The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Did you forget to say 'Amen'?

Who says it's an era of video games? Board games — religious ones, that is — are growing in popularity, with sales up 11 percent to $423 million in 2000, report industry analysts.

Of the 1 million religious board games sold annually, some are Christian takes on secular games. For example, Risk turned into Missionary Conquest. Bibleopoly replaces Monopoly's capitalism with opportunities to build churches (winning is contingent on helping other players succeed). And at the end of Christian Uno, players can call out: "You forgot to say, 'Amen.' "

Some games involve playing for eternal life, from Pilgrim's Progress (based on John Bunyan's book) to a game where players accumulate sin, grace and Roman Catholic sacraments before landing on a "death" square and being sent to heaven — or hell.

Games for other religions are out there too. Kosherland, a Jewish game based on Candyland, tests children's knowledge of kosher food. Leela, a Hindu game that inspired Chutes and Ladders, leads players up and down the path to enlightenment.


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February issue


Embracing diversity