A new video game developed by a 19-year-old student and promoted by the Azerbaijani government lets players change the results of the Spring 1992 capture of the Nagorno Karabakhi town of Shusha by Armenian and Nagorno Karabakhi forces. The battle marked the turning point in the conflict for control of the territory.
The game is called Under Occupation: Shusha (or İşgal Altında: Şuşa), and lets players jump into the boots of an Azerbaijani soldier who must battle Armenian soldiers in house-to-house battles to retake the city. The game was created by Farid Hagverdiev, a 19-year-old student at Baku’s State Oil Academy.
Hagverdiev spent two years developing the game with other students at the academy and was inspired by several team-based first-person shooters including Call of Duty and Counter-Strike. It is also the first video game developed solely by Azerbaijani citizens.
"By creating the game we wanted to support the patriotic spirit in our youth, which I hope we accomplished successfully," he told EurasiaNet.org. The game can be downloaded for free, and has even managed to capture the attention of the government, who apparently find it inspiring…
They like it so much that the country's Ministry of Youth and Sports recently organized a presentation of Under Occupation earlier this summer at the Hyatt Regency in Baku.
Hagverdiev and his team of developers are already thinking about making another game; though this time they wouldn't mind making some money off it.