Here’s something Smiths fans never dreamed they would hear: Morrissey has made a video game. No, the whole world hasn’t just turned upside down. The game—designed to promote veganism—was made in association with PETA, and is called This Beautiful Creature Must Die.
Available on the PETA site, and above, the game involves saving cute animals—cows, fish, pigs, and maybe some kind of turkey/chicken thing—from the buzzing and bloody blades of a meat factory. The saving is done by tapping the animals before the blades get them, and you have to watch out for bombs. You’ll also want to play it on a touch screen, because—thanks to the four simultaneous panels of pending death, it’s virtually impossible to keep up if played with a mouse. Even then, playing with several fingers at once is harder than mastering a Johnny Marr solo.
You will also enjoy a chip-tunes version of the Smiths song “Meat Is Murder.”
“This game is the biggest social crusade of all, as we safeguard the weak and helpless from violent human aggression,” said celebrity vegan Morrissey in a press statement. “You don’t get that from Pokémon Go,” he supposedly added, almost certainly proving that Morrissey had nothing to do with writing the press release.
One thing that Mozza would almost certainly approve is a link on the game’s home screen, which whisks you off to see a video detailing just how brutally the meat industry treats animals. The other link takes you to a page on PETA’s site where you can sign a pledge to go vegan. This also puts you on a mailing list, and subscribes you to receive text messages from PETA in the future.
It’s a cute gimmick, and if it raises awareness of animal suffering, and of vegan and vegetarian diets and lifestyles, then the game will be doing a great job. But one wonders just who it’s aimed at. After all, and Smiths fan will already be at least aware of veganism, and anyone younger than 30 probably won’t have heard of Morrissey, making him a rather ineffective figurehead. Still, for vegetarian and vegan fans of the Smiths, who also happen to enjoy 8-bit renderings of old pop tunes, This Beautiful Creature Must Die is a treat.
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