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Bury Me, My Love: Tragic reality of Syrian refugees fleeing conflict recreated in new game Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Bury Me, My Love: Tragic reality of Syrian refugees fleeing conflict recreated in new game

The war in Syria has displaced millions [Getty]

Date of publication: 10 August, 2017

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Bury Me, My Love is a new mobile game inspired by stories lived by millions of Syrian refugees who have taken on the treacherous journey to Europe.
For millions of Syrians, the conflict at home has left scars that will quite possibly never fade away. Six years into the war, hundreds of thousands are dead, millions are displaced and the struggle to survive is a reality for all.

And that grim reality has now been recreated in a game.

Bury Me, My Love is a new mobile game which attempts to tell the story of a young Syrian woman named Noor who fled the conflict in search for safety within the borders of Europe.

The game, which is co-produced between French outfits The Pixel Hunt and Figs, creates phone chats between Noor and her husband who was left at home in Syria.

The player takes on the role of the husband who responds to his wife’s circumstances with advice, including how to deal with smugglers and border patrols.

The game is inspired by stories lived by millions of refugees who have in fact taken on the treacherous journey.  

Pixel Hunt’s Florent Haunt maintains “games do not necessarily have to be fun and trivial."

“On the contrary I took examples such as documentaries and graphic novels to explain that, like every medium, games can tackle any topic. It’s all about finding the good distance, with an honest methodology,” the former journalist said.

“We’re not activists. We’re not backed by an NGO or funded by an agency with an agenda. But we’ve heard lots of stories about Syrian migrants and refugees and we’ve been moved by them. It made us think about what it means to leave the people you love and everything you call yours behind.”

I took examples such as documentaries and graphic novels to explain that, like every medium, games can tackle any topic. It’s all about finding the good distance, with an honest methodology

The Syrian conflict began when the Baath regime, in power since 1963 and led by President Bashar al-Assad, responded with military force to peaceful protests demanding democratic reforms during the Arab Spring wave of uprisings, triggering an armed rebellion fuelled by mass defections from the Syrian army.

According to independent monitors, hundreds of thousands of civilians have been killed in the war, mostly by the regime and its powerful allies, and millions have been displaced both inside and outside of Syria. Last September, a report suggested the deaths of refugees making the dangerous sea journey may have exceeded 10,000. 

The brutal tactics pursued mainly by the regime, which have included the use of chemical weapons, sieges, mass executions and torture against civilians have led to war crimes investigations.

While the game is expected to be released next month, questions have been raised surrounding its intentions and what it could really offer the refugees themselves.

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