The Light in the Darkness
available now for free on PlayStation 5 and the Epic Games Store.
The Light in the Darkness is a gaming experience that evolves the way current and future generations think and learn about the Holocaust and antisemitism.
As a platform, a video game is the perfect medium to capture the undivided attention and immerse people into a story that helps them learn without them feeling taught - a different approach leading to a healthier curiosity.
The Light in the Darkness forces you to consider the terrifying emotional truth of this dark chapter in history... it’s hard to think of another game that has really dug into the horrors and the trauma of the war like this.
Opening with the Évian Conference of 1938, which doomed Jewish refugees by refusing them entry to safe countries, the game follows a family of Polish Jews in Paris as they experience the Nazi occupation, leading, ultimately, to the Vel d’Hiv roundup in 1942. In the space of a moving hour, Bernard touches on the Nuremberg Laws, antisemitism in fairy tales, anti-Jewish propaganda and Zionism. He shows how the Holocaust was, pace Whoopi Goldberg, a “race-based” genocide and how quickly France went from embracing Jews to sending them to their deaths.
Mr. Bernard’s approach could even be used to deepen people’s understanding of other genocides. The game arrives at an urgent moment. The Anti-Defamation League, an advocacy group, reports that anti-Semitism has reached a record-high in America. Elsewhere, memories of Nazi horrors are waning as elderly survivors die. By keeping their stories alive, the game helps to inform new generations about the atrocities that Jews were made to endure.
Holocaust education through video games allows people to learn about the events of the Holocaust more interactively and engagingly. It allows players to experience the stories of individuals who lived through the Holocaust, better understand its impact on the world and make connections to present-day political events, and understand what democracy is and why it is crucial to protect it. Arguments about why using video games as an educational tool for the Holocaust can be controversial were addressed during the interviews, as mainstream games may trivialise the events that took place. However, when designed and executed properly, like The Light in the Darkness, these games can be an effective way to educate people about the Holocaust and its impact on society.