Captain Bible in the Dome of Darkness
“Captain Bible in the Dome of Darkness” is a Christian action-adventure game that seeks to educate children about the Bible through the extensive use of Bible verses. The game was developed and published by the Bridgestone Multimedia Group. It was released originally in 1994 as a DOS game. Shortly after this release, “Captain Bible: Special Edition” was released and distributed for free (http://www.mobygames.com/game/dos/captain-bible-in-the-dome-of-darkness).
The game begins as Captain Bible lands his jet on a large tank-like vehicle. He rushes into the vehicle where he is told that the city has been encased in a dome of darkness generated by the Tower of Deception. Now evil robots known as Cybers are infesting the city and spreading lies to the citizens. The commander tells Captain Bible that he must infiltrate the city, rescue seven people from the grasp of the Cybers, and have them join him in destroying the Tower of Deception using a gigantic robot called the Unibot. Before Captain Bible leaves, the commander prays for his mission and the adventure begins!
Upon entering the first building of the city, one realizes that this is a third person game in which Captain Bible is moved around by the player. The first thing one has to do upon entering each building in the city is to go around to Scripture Stations that are set up throughout the buildings. These give Captain Bible one Bible verse to add to the database of his computer Bible, the only item the player starts each building with. There are also Chapel Rooms in which the player can have his Faith restored (giving him back his health) or can pray to God for enhancements (if he has the corresponding Bible verses). Using a map to help the player navigate, one must move through each building defeating Cybers, collecting Bible verses, and ultimately searching for a person who has been consumed by a particular sin.
After all the Cybers in a building are defeated and all the Bible verses are collected, the player is able to get into the room where the person in need of rescue is waiting. They are each consumed by a different sin. Captain Bible uses the appropriate verse to get them to see the error of their ways. They are then saved and go to the Unibot to wait for him and the other people to arrive to destroy the Tower of Deception. Throughout the rest of the game, these people will meet with Captain Bible in Communication Rooms where they will ask him what specific Bible verses mean. If the player can correctly interpret the verse, the person will transmit it to Captain Bible. At the end of each level, as Captain Bible moves on to the next one a small black robot comes and takes away all his enhancements and the verses in his computer Bible.With all seven people saved, Captain Bible jumps in the top of the Unibot and moves it toward seven smaller towers that power the Tower of Deception. At each of the smaller towers, the people that Captain Bible saved are tempted by their old sin. Captain Bible has to use Bible verses still inside the Unibot’s memory to protect them and destroy the seven towers. Then, upon reaching the Tower of Deception, Captain Bible is tempted. The others manage to save him and Captain Bible attacks the Tower of Deception even though he has been told it will kill him, saying that he must fulfill God’s will no matter what. He destroys the Tower and manages to survive the ensuing explosion. The final screen is him standing in the Unibot, arms in the air, with the word “Victory!” above his head.
There are several things this game does to accomplish its mission of educating children about the Bible. First, the enhancements that are gained through praying to God are the same throughout the entire game. Thus they require the same verses throughout the entire game. This makes the verses much easier to remember since the player sees them all game.
Another way the game tries to educate children is by using a broad spectrum of other verses. Very few verses other than those needed for enhancements are used in more than one building (an example of a repeated verse being Ezekial 33:11). The verses come from all over the Bible, both Old and New Testaments.
Another interesting aspect of the educational side of this game is the fact that it is not enough for the children playing to memorize the Bible verses. In the Communication Rooms, they have to be able to interpret them too. Of course, to “correctly” interpret the verses means to pick the interpretation the creator of the game believes to be correct. If the player chooses the wrong interpretation, the person asking them tells them they are wrong. The player then has to leave, reenter the room and ask the person’s forgiveness before trying again.
The game also tries to educate the player about the idea of sacrifice. When at the end, the Tower of Deception tries to convince Captain Bible that he is too important to die, we are seeing a kind of Jesus/Satan or Jesus/Gethsemane moment happening. Once Captain Bible is snapped out of it though, he goes through with the attack, essentially agreeing to sacrifice himself for God’s will. In this case, he is spared from death and is able to claim victory over the defeated Tower of Deception.