Concerns have sparked online regarding a controversy about Atomic Heart possibly being Russian propaganda. Mundfish is facing backlash online after being accused of glorifying the USSR. Is Atomic Heart Russian propaganda or a subject of unfair bias due to circumstances outside of the developers control?
Is Atomic Heart Russian Propaganda?
It’s highly doubtful that Atomic Heart is Russian propaganda. It’s difficult to say confidently that developers Mundfish have no connections nor ties to the Russian government, but Atomic Heart has no alarming indications of being propaganda of any sort.
Developers Mundfish have reached out on Twitter to make a statement about this following the accusations of Russian propaganda:
The accusations come from people over the internet. Particularly Twitter, who has been long since been notorious for over-sensitive politicking. So take everything you hear there with a grain of salt. People are angry that Mundfish isn’t taking sides or condemning Russia’s invasion of Ukraine outright.
With Atomic Heart taking clear inspirations from Bioshock, this has people accusing Mundfish of portraying the USSR in a positive light. We won’t say that the background lore of the game isn’t pro-Russian, considering that in this alternate reality the Soviets defeated Nazi Germany (seemingly by themselves) thanks to early advancements in technology. The USSR in 1955 is portrayed as a nigh utopian society before the machines go crazy and start killing every human they can find.
Due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022, there have been a lot of government sanctions around the world against Russia. This has led to the unfortunate implications from a lot of people that any Russian companies, or even Russian sounding brands, are to be boycotted. This extends to people online asking others not to buy Atomic Heart due to them believing that Mundfish will somehow use the funds earned to help invade Ukraine.
It should be noted that Atomic Heart’s music composer, Mick Gordon, is donating the fee he received for helping make the game to support Ukraine. He isn’t permanently affiliated with Mundfish but this is a step in the right direction.
It’s doubtful that Atomic Heart is state-funded spyware. Data collection is nothing new for modern games with developers from US and other countries doing the same. It isn’t going to be keylogging your passwords and reading through your emails to send them to Russian intelligence organizations.
Despite this, we want to make it clear that Atomic Heart is unlikely to be Russian propaganda. However we’ll learn more as the Atomic Heart releases this February 21, 2023.
Check out this Youtube video from Roze talking about the Atomic Heart controversy.