Games in the aesthetics of the USSR

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The aesthetics of the Soviet Union and post-Soviet Russia have been featured in various video games. Red Alert, a spin-off of the Command & Conquer series, features a stereotypical image of the USSR, where familiar elements of the country are twisted into absurdity. Other games like Endless Summer, Remember, Workers & Resources: Soviet Republic, Singularity, and Escape from Tarkov also incorporate nostalgic Soviet elements. These games range from an economic strategy simulation where players build a Soviet republic to a post-apocalyptic shooter featuring weapons from the Warsaw Pact countries.

Games in the aesthetics of the USSR

With the release of Atomic Heart, gamers were reminded of one of the most unusual settings for video games. The setting of the Land of the Soviets in one form or another is interesting to both our and foreign audiences. We recall games filled with the spirit of the USSR.

The ultimate example of a video game Soviet Union that seems to be loved by all gamers is this Red Alert. In the spin-off universe of the Command & Conquer series, nuclear weapons were not invented, so technology took a completely different path. Also, in this reality, the USSR not only did not have time to collapse, but also became a powerful opponent for the combined forces of Europe and the USA.

Red Alert is an example of a stereotypical image of both the Soviet Union and “Mother Russia”, where well-known images characteristic of the country are twisted into absurdity. Hats with ears, vodka, bears and balalaikas. In the play of the Red Alert world, where, for the sake of justice, all sides of the conflict are as ridiculous as possible: for the USA, agents, cowboys and fighting dolphins stand, and for Japan – huge furs and samurai.

The USSR is not far from the image of a living anecdote: combat bears in armor, infantrymen in wellies with Kalashnikov assault rifles, heavy tanks. There are also exotics like octopuses that sink submarines. But the most famous image of the Soviet army in Red Alert is, of course, the Kirov airship, the heaviest air unit in the game. Because everything is bigger in the USSR!

A free visual novel “Endless Summer” tells about how an ordinary resident of Russia accidentally ends up in the Soviet pioneer camp “Sovinok” and, at the same time, is reduced to a teenager.

Let “Horseless Summer” not shine with an outstanding plot, but at the same time it captivates with its thick atmosphere: cozy houses of the pioneer camp, hot summer, rest by the river, groups based on interests, nightly antics of teenagers. It’s a very warm game that’s just a pleasure to be in — unless, of course, you take into account the weird and dark storylines like Elena’s story.

Another good game on this topic “Remember” from Ice-Pick Lodge, which takes place in a closed Soviet city. It tells the story of a group of school friends who, by the will of fate, get together again and remember the old days: when the trees were taller, the grass was greener, and they were younger and happier. Like their plot, the environment is filled with warm nostalgia, which even a person who has not seen the USSR in person can feel. However, it is still worth saying that the game is not really about this – only its beginning. But this is already a spoiler!

Another game with a positive way of the USSR is the economic strategy Workers & Resources: Soviet Republic, which is currently in Steam Early Access. In it, you are allowed to create your own Soviet republic: build districts of concrete high-rise buildings, raise virgin land, adjust production and trade with the “rotten West” in years of dire need. Well, on the contrary, to show that the Soviet man is the kindest and most open, and will help his neighbors in everything.

In fact, this is a fairly standard construction simulator, the main feature of which is aesthetics. Where many building video games offer the average image of a Western metropolis, Workers & Resources allows you to erect labor monuments, lay rails for red streetcars, and finance colossal heavy industrial plants.

Singularity – A game that takes place in a closed Soviet scientific complex, where experiments were conducted with time.

Apocalyptic Vibes — a game on the GZDoom engine from a lone developer about a courier somewhere in Eastern Europe after the end of the world.

Escape from Tarkov – AAA online shooter in post-Soviet aesthetics. In contrast to large Western blockbusters, here a great emphasis is placed on the atmosphere of the “native”: a huge variety of weapons of the Warsaw Pact countries (AK, SKS, Stechkin and Makarov pistols, AS-12, KZ-23 shotgun and others), architecture from garages and panels And the streets of the city of Tarkov itself, around and inside which the events of the game take place, are copied from famous places of Moscow and St. Petersburg.

Read about games in the aesthetics of the “radioactive USSR” and the post-apocalypse in our article on M.Click. And what games did you remember?

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