Ok, let me first say that this is silly and meant to be light hearted. Personally, it effects my gaming habits a bit. When I’m playing a game such at Total War, Age of Empires, or Civilization I will try and make my empire as atheistic as possible. In the Total War games I delete all the churches and instead build schools and universities. If I can’t dismiss or assassinate my own religious leaders, I send them off to the very corner of the map. In the Civilization games I refuse to adopt any religion when it is invented, and try my best to avoid researching religious techs. As for Age of Empires, I build the church grudgingly to get the technologies, and then delete it the moment I’m done. (When I played I usually played online and there are other non-religious techs available at the church, so I needed them to play my best against other people). Currently I just started playing Dawn of Discovery (Anno 1404)  and a lot of the NPCs are uber religious characters. There is this one lady who looks a bit like Joan of Arc who keeps telling me about how she's on a mission from god and that angels talk to her. I swear I am so going to level her cities to the ground when I get better at the game. :-p Again, this is all just in good fun and I know I'm negelecting some of the mechanics of the game, but I enjoy it. Am I alone in little quirks like these?

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I noticed that too when playing Dragon age! I wanted to slap them. Sometimes when playing games like Tropico 3, I'll feel evil and build nothing but churches, religious schools, and secret police stations. I usually can only tolerate this for about half an hour and then I feel really disgusted and sorry for my NPCs.
What is your strategy in Black and White? =D

Religion in alternate universes like Warcraft is fine since by definition gods do exist in those universes but I must admit that priests/paladins still seem pretentious.

Sometimes in Civilization Revolution I'll skip things like ceremonial burial, monarchy and religion.

But to make the strategy work correctly for the game mechanic I'll use a Communism for my government since that increases productivity (ironically) and makes churches and cathedrals no longer produce "happiness".
Me being an atheist does not affect my gaming choices that much. However, me being a humanist HIGHLY affect my gaming choices.

I don't have a problem with overwhelming utterances of religiosity such as those in Dragon Age: Origins, because that is the case with that particular parralel world. What remains the same across every world is the way we deal with other people and with the world itself.

Recently I was playing Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey. Apart from being a great handheld RPG, it deals with a lot of issues of morality and choices that affects the outcome of mankind. I felt truly remorseful after I chose to go the Lawful route, and eventually see all mankind brainwashed and singing praises to God (which is real in the game, and which has a personality just like the God in the Old Testament), which is utterly disgusting!

Chaos route seems more interesting (they have Lucifer cross-dressing!), yet suffers from the Social Darwinism aspect of it. However, I really like how they deal with the Neutral route. It's very humanistic and really has a great ending.

I hate Lawful route the most simply because it looks promising at first. To the people, an extreme Lawful society may not be worse than a Chaotic society, but it's more disgusting because of the brainwashing aspect.

P.S. Regarding Communism... it's nothing more than another exclusive religion. That's how I see it. Extreme communist society tend to be more "Lawful" in the aforementioned case. I know because I once live and am still living in the remnants of it.

P.S. again: Actually, I think "The Maker" in Dragon Age refers to the makers of the game itself. Isn't it neat for the developers playing God in a way like this? Hehe... just joking. I think all game developers are playing God in one way or another, though.
I have to say that Atheism does not affect my gaming at all. However I only play Guild Wars and some MW2 so there isn't much to affect. I believe when Guild Wars 2 comes out I won't choose human as a race mainly because they worship gods whereas the Charr don't believe in gods so I will be inclined to choose Charr most likely.
When I happen to be playing games that involve ethical or moral choices of sorts - Knights of the Old Republic and Mass Effect come to mind - I suppose it does - as does my being a Humanist, a Transhumanist and a bit of a Hedonist - in the sense that I find it really hard to play a character in a way radically different from how I will act if I were in that situation myself. That's why all of my characters end up being "Chaotic Good" when such label or equivalent are applicable. From time to time I'll force myself to make choices I would never take in real life but simply for the sake of exploring the game and seeing how things develop, but I often feel like I'm exercising violence over myself and never really enjoy it. Boy, I'd make a terrible actor.
Atheism absolutely affects the strategies I use while playing games, especially RTS's. I always make sure to fully use the available religions to subjugate the masses...and no, it doesn't matter what the particular religion is, they all seem to be useful for manipulating populations in one way or another. However, I recently got into an argument with a Fleet Leader in Star Trek Online who was using Fleet Wide email to "spread the Word of God" to all of the fleet members. I accused him of abusing his position as a senior officer in order to attempt to convert people while not providing a means for the rest of the fleet to voice their opinions, and it went no where. Trying to reason with the religious is about as useful as beating your head against the wall.

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