Occupy Central

‘Yellow Umbrella’ video game tasks players with defending Occupy Central barricades

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 22 October, 2014, 4:47pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 23 October, 2014, 2:37pm

A newly launched video game lets those who did not get to experience the Occupy Central protests first-hand to get a feel for the civil disobedience movement.

Named Yellow Umbrella after the movement’s most iconic symbol, the tower-defence game has been downloaded thousands of times since it was released on Tuesday.

In the spirit of non-violence espoused by the student protesters, players are unable to attack. Instead, they must defend their camp as waves of police officers, triads, angry anti-Occupy protesters and even Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying himself attack the barricades.

Those real-life barricades were under threat on Wednesday, as a taxi drivers’ association started tearing down fences and fortifications in Mong Kok.

The game’s developer told the South China Morning Post that he was inspired to create the game after witnessing the protesters’ resolve in the face of “violence from the anti-Occupy people and even the police”.

“In my point of view, the students are fighting for democracy not only for themselves, but also for the anti-Occupy people and even the police,” said Fung Kam Keung of Hong Kong developing company Awesapp. “They should not be treated like this. Shame on the CY government.”

Fung, who had previously joined the protests in Admiralty and Mong Kok, said he felt that not enough people were willing to show their support for the students.

“I felt we needed to do something to wake the people up,” he said. “My team and I worked day and night for five days to finish the game” before the student-government talks took place on Tuesday night.

“The game is not only for fun, but also to show our support for the students.”

Players of the game can use yellow ribbons to “buy” different defensive tools to use against specific attackers, such as HK$500 to give to triads (referring to allegations that anti-Occupy protesters were paid to take part) and umbrellas to fight off police pepper spray.

Players can also unleash “HK$50 million worth of gold blocks” to see off the game’s final boss, CY Leung – a reference to the controversy over the money he received from Australian engineering firm UGL.

Since its release, the game has leaped up the ranks of the Google Play store for Android apps, and a version for iOS devices is currently under review by Apple.

Yellow Umbrella is not Awesapp’s first stab at political satire. The company’s other titles include Angry Lufsig, an Angry Birds-style game where players launch projectiles at wolves (representing CY Leung), as well as Toilet of Plagiarists, a parody of Tower of Saviours, a popular video game advertised heavily in Hong Kong which many accused of having ripped off Japanese title Puzzle & Dragons.

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