A Book That Links Zelda with Christianity

Author Jonny Walls sets out to show the cultural impact of The Legend of Zelda video game series with his latest book: The Legend of Zelda and Theology. I highly doubt there is anyone out there that hasn’t heard of Zelda of her savior Link, as I also doubt anyone hasn’t come across Christianity in some form or another. I am not going to make this a post about my thoughts or opinions on the latter, but I will use this short post to post about a concept that I kind of like.

If you were born in the 80′s or even in the last 10 years and have played any of the recent releases in the Franchise, you know the level of effect the series has. You not only are playing a game, or an RPG, but you are thrown into an environment and story that you get excited about. Christianity on the other hand, isn’t as adored for as Link and his quest for the sexy Zelda. Video games and Christianity have been on two different sides of the tracks since day 1. Minus the epic title Exodus that followed the biblical figure Moses and his quest to lead the Israelites to the ‘promise land.’

Hop on in for the rest of my thoughts. This isn’t a bash on Christianity, so please don’t take it as such. This is more about how I personally feel about Walls’ thoughts on what the game means.

 

Over the years, Christian organizations have linked violent acts to video games. There really aren’t any positive links between the two beasts. Walls compiles essays from various scholars and theologians that delve into the connection between the video game series and Christian Theology. Walls isn’t saying that Zelda is based on Christian Theology, he is just wanting something like Zelda, which is incredibly popular, to lead to Christianity.

“It’s good for a lot of different people for different reasons, first, for people who are into video games, good storytelling or Zelda in general, and interested or curious about theology. This is also a good way for people to dip into it for the first time.” “If the reader is already a Christian, this is hopefully an interesting new way to look at theology.” “It is also good for both sides to look at it and appeal to both theology and Zelda.”

Walls would like Christians to become interested in playing Zelda, but would also like readers view the series through the scope of Christianity. Where I start to really get put off by Walls and his views when he says that he hopes that readers will understand that the video game’s themes all point to one source – God, the Creator.

The idea of getting Christians or readers into an amazing series like Zelda is okay. Get readers who might be interested in learning about Theology is also a clever idea. But saying that every theme of Zelda points to God is almost outrageous. I can agree with some ethical correlations between the different parts of the games and a moral side of Christianity that the theologians and scholars point out. But comparing a fictional story to a Christian perspective between good and evil is a shot in dark, at best.

Either way, the concept is cool. The idea is there, but his views on the game are a bit skewed in my opinion. I applaud his attempt to create a bridge between video games and Christianity. I honestly see there being an unnecessary gap and misconception between the two. I will probably attempt to get a copy of the book and see how he executes on this idea. I might update this post with what I get from the book. We’ll have to wait and see.

The Legend of Zelda and Theology is available now on Amazon.com. If you happen to get the book, please leave your comments below and let us know your thoughts.

  • Via GameInformer
  •