The Devil is using apparently innocent videogames to insinuate his ideas into the minds of the young. This is the dramatic warning of Italian Catholic researcher Carlo Climati, who has mounted a study of the most popular electronic games produced between 1994 and 1996.
Climati, who is the author of a book on purportedly Satanic rock music, warns in a new study that the games could have a brain-washing effect with potentially disastrous consequences for the young. And his warnings have been picked up by the local press in this predominantly Catholic country.
"Certain videogames represent a kind of initiation for children into the world of the occult, with frequent use of monstrous and demonic images," Climati was quoted as saying in a press report this week. The success of games such as "Doom 2" and "Heretic" helps to popularise esoteric themes and there is a tendency to resort to subliminal messages in some games, he says.
Game players subjected to a bombardment of demonic symbols become familiar with the trappings of black magic, he says. "The games stimulate an interest in the occult and represent an extraordinary vehicle for the spread of Satanism among the young," the researcher says.