Apple says politically-charged Palestinian game isn’t a “game” at all

Liyla and the Shadows of War is a game about a young girl living in Gaza during the 2014 Israel-Gaza conflict. Unfortunately, I can’t tell you much more than that because Apple has declared it too political to count as a game in its App Store. On Tuesday afternoon, developer Rasheed Abueideh said Liyla had been rejected for not being appropriate for the “Game” category and shared a message from Apple that read: As we discussed, please revise the app category for your app and remove it from Games, since we found that your app is not appropriate in the Games category. It…


This videogame about the Israeli–Palestinian conflict makes peace uncomfortably achievable

I solved the Israeli-Palestinian situation over the weekend, and the experience didn’t fill me with hope for the future. Let’s backtrack a little: Benjamin Netanyahu is still Israel’s prime minister, Palestinian statehood is still far from a reality, and international pressure or support for any just outcome is lukewarm at best. All of which is to say, my solution could only exist in a fictional universe. And so it does—I was playing ImpactGames’ PeaceMaker: Israeli Palestinian Conflict, which was recently updated for iOS and Android. PeaceMaker tries to play down its fictional side. It is very much of this world,…