A country that is constantly shrouded in secrecy and with a desire to keep all forms of media sourced from its own boundaries, North Korea have unsurprisingly released their own smartphone rendition of the hit online game Minecraft. The Associated Press managed to get a look at Boy General, a game that is growing massively in popularity, and one that is actually based off an animated TV series in North Korea.
Stylistically, Boy General seemingly borrows heavily from Minecraft, in terms of the scenery and overall design. However, instead of mining and building, the gamer will play as the protagonist ‘Swoeme’ (meaning Iron Hammer), who must roam ancient lands and take on missions to defeat his enemies. Although the accessibility is rather different to Minecraft, as many gamers can connect to servers like that of 1&1, for example, and play co-op games online; Boy General is shared via Bluetooth because no general ‘App Store’ exists.
Regardless of any political messages that may or may not exist (most have drawn comparisons between Boy General and that of the country’s leader – Kim Jong Un), the game itself is reportedly incredibly fun and entertaining, and is one of many new smartphone games that are gripping the nation. Tank Battle is an obvious state-approved game, along with North Korean versions of popular games such as Angry Birds and Candy Crush.
In what might be strange to think for those living in United States, United Kingdom, or otherwise, North Korea only uses its own Intranet system, as access to the World Wide Web is banned. North Koreans can send messages, photos, and videos to each other, but communication with foreigners is strictly forbidden. Interestingly, citizens can call a phone number if they want to know the weather forecast.