A British Muslim who spent three years in the controversial Guantanamo Bay detention facility is serving as a consultant on the upcoming Xbox 360 and PC game Rendition: Guantanamo, according to Deadline Scotland.
As GamePolitics reported in March, Rendition: Guantanamo centers around a near-future version of the controversial prison in which mercenaries are in control and scientists conduct experiments on detainees.
Moazzam Begg (left), who was picked up as a suspected Al Qaeda member by Coalition forces in Pakistan, is assisting Glasgow-based game developer T-Enterprise. Begg claims to have been tortured during his stay at Guantanamo. T-Enterprise exec Zarrar Chishti commented on Begg's participation in the project:
We approached Moazzam because it’s very hard for us to know how to design the layout of the prison and he helped. He came up two weeks ago to give his input on what we were working on...
Due to the controversial subject matter, T-Enterprise appears eager not to step on any official toes. Deadline Scotlan reports that the developer had sought advice and permissions from law enforcement and political officials. Chisti explained:
There are certain rules we can’t break after meeting politicians so we are not making the game too extreme. We have had a lot of hate mail about this, mainly from America...
But no US or British soldiers get killed in [the game]. The only ones being killed are mercenaries. We have set it in January 2010 because that’s when we think the camp will be closed. We are making a statement. We did not want Guantanamo to be forgotten.
Begg, who wrote a book about his time at Guantanamo, has a financial stake in the project. He spoke of his time detention:
I was put in solitary confinement with no access to the outside world and no explanation as to why I was being detained. My wife gave birth to my son six months after I was arrested and I saw him for the first time when he was three years old. It would be wrong to say I’m not angry but I’m willing to forgive 1000 times over...
The only thing I am concerned about it making sure the game does not misrepresent the prisoners. This will not demean the reality of Guantanamo but it could bring those issues to people who would not usually think about it.