The Smiths’ have partnered with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals to release a new video game based on their 1985 album Meat Is Murder. An 8-bit game that takes place in-browser, This Beautiful Creature Must Die is made to look and sound like a vintage arcade game, even going so far as to employ the famed record’s title track as an 8-bit score.
At its core, the game is extremely simple to understand: Users click chickens, cows, turkeys, and pigs in four quadrants as they descend toward spinning blades of death, all while avoiding clicking bombs. The pace of the animal rain rapidly increases as more and more creatures are saved, with the goal of saving as many as possible.
“This game is the biggest social crusade of all,” said Smiths’ frontman Morrissey of the video game, “as we safeguard the weak and helpless from violent human aggression. You don’t get that from ‘Pokémon Go.’”
The game might not capture the masses in the same way that it’s Pikachu-fronted counterpart (if you can even call it that) does, but it may lead some users to watch some PETA-made anti-meat advertisements that float on screen after a loss. Those videos include a fairly terrifying slaughterhouse film with the original Meat Is Murder blaring in full non-8-bit glory.
For PETA, turning players off of meat is the goal of the video game.
“PETA’s This Beautiful Creature Must Die has a fun, nostalgic vibe but also calls out animal agriculture as the biggest threat to human health, animals, and the environment today,” said PETA Vice President of Marketing Joel Bartlett in a press release. “After mastering the game, players can save animals and the Earth in real life by going vegan.”
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