Video Game Targets ‘Tea Party Zombies,’ Fox News Personalities
Published September 07, 2011
A screengrab of “Tea Party Zombies Must Die” depicts former U.S. Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, left, and Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly. The game is billed as “first-person shooter” featuring multiple firearms and a crowbar.
A New York-based video game developer has set his virtual crosshairs on Republican and conservative political figures in a game called “Tea Party Zombies Must Die,” which allows players to indiscriminately slaughter politicians like Michele Bachmann, Mike Huckabee and Sarah Palin.
The gruesome game, created by StarvingEyes Advergaming, is billed as “first-person shooter” featuring “Tea Party zombies” to be targeted with an “arsenal of weapons,” including multiple firearms and a crowbar. Notable politicians depicted in the game include current and previous presidential hopefuls like Palin, Bachmann, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum. Several Fox News personalities are also featured, including Huckabee, Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity and Brit Hume.
Attention to the game’s release has heightened after violent rhetoric from Teamsters President James P. Hoffa, who in a speech over the weekend told President Obama that his supporters would “take out the son-of-a-bitches” in the Tea Party who were waging “war” against unions.
“The liberal media have been preaching for years that conservatives are the ones who invoke violent imagery and rhetoric. Yet in the space of two days, the radical, pro-Obama left calls us ‘son-of-a-bitches’ and says they want to ‘take us out.’ And they follow that with a hideously violent game where they do just that — depicting ways of shooting prominent conservatives, presidential candidates and journalists,” said Brent Bozell, president of the Media Research Center. “The news media would be in an uproar if violence had been incited against liberals. Their silence disgusts me.”
The game’s developer, Jason Oda, of Brooklyn, N.Y., did not respond to FoxNews.com requests for comment. But the 32-year-old Connecticut native is no stranger to violent, politically-themed video games.
In 2008, he created “Kung-Fu election,” which invited players to choose their favorite candidate to take them into battle against a political adversary. Democrats like Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, John Edwards and Bill Richardson were pitted against Republican counterparts like Mitt Romney, Rudy Giuliani and John McCain.
“The would-be presidents duke it out with an array of special weapons and Kung-Fu moves that will leave only one man — er, person — standing,” reads a press release about the game. “If you thought that McCain was too old for the rigors of a grueling election, wait until you see what he can do with a bo staff in his hands!”
In 2004, Oda also created “Bushgame.com,” in which 1980s television characters waged war against monstrous versions of officials in the Bush administration. At the end of each level, players would receive a text critique that blasted the president’s position on Iraq, the economy, taxes and Social Security, according to The Associated Press.
“I just hoped that people can go beyond the obvious little soundbites you hear all the time and have better ammunition and better understanding of the reasons why Bush should be out of the White House,” Oda told The Associated Press at the time.
Oda, according to Connecticut’s Darien Times, earned a bachelor of fine arts degree from Rhode Island School of Design in 2001. Two years earlier, he was awarded best in show at the Darien Art Show. In 2002, he produced an online game based on popular “emo” rock groups that was featured on MTV and was later cited by the New York Times and Spin Magazine.
Oda’s list of clients, according to his website, include high-profile firms like Pepsi, Hasbro, Sears, UPS and many others.
Huckabee, who discussed the game during his weekday radio commentary called “The Huckabee Report,” questioned whether corporate supporters would stand by while the video game projects violence toward real people.
“Will Pepsi, Motorola, and NASCAR among others cease to advertise on the website that promotes this violent and hate-filled bigotry or will there be the usual double standard?” Huckabee asked.
“I’m personally flattered to be included in this young game-makers efforts to be funny, and I even support his First Amendment rights to produce things that are in poor taste or unseemly to rational people, but I do not support the hypocrisy of the left who scream at all offenses they can manufacture toward conservatives, but turn their backs on the same standards when applied to someone of their own political ilk,” he told FoxNews.com.