“Mir UmarHassan […] lamented th[e] willful and violent erasure of an ancient town and in a delightful satirical poem, where he wrote about the vapid consumption of a place and the excretion of a people devoid of the flavors of their individual and munificent past. With recent cause to recollect the horror of the demolition of Babri Masjid in Ayodhya, and in solidarity with the protests against the draconian actions of our government[,] we are revisiting UmarHassan’s original poem.”
Even though that the Islam is the second-largest religion in India after Hinduism, the situation of Muslims living in the South-Asian country worsens daily. The current protests, especially the deadly ones in Delhi, are not just one single peak of horror, as the history of violence against Indian Muslims proves to be a sad tradition. And I am sorry to admit that, but without “The Indifferent Wonder of an Edible Place” the chances are high that I would neverever read up any of this.
As a 31 years old white male living in Europe, I never had to endure such pressure and hatred against myself just for being who I am. My personal current fears circle around the climate change, the brutal political swing to the right in European countries as well as the United States and maybe the possible Coronavirus outbreak. But the developers of “The Indifferent Wonder of an Edible Place” managed to change my perspective, so that I would focus on their personal struggles and anxieties – and they did that in an abstract, even magical way.
They visualize step by step a poem by Mir UmarHassan, a Gujarati poet, whose works they already featured in their game “a Museum of Dubious Splendors.”. It reads like the letter of a man, who is writing to his brother, right after he got transformed into an eater of buildings. His teeth can break the bricks down to consumable pieces, and with each devoured construction he also eats a part of the culture and history.
The tragical lyric in combination with the beautiful world design make “The Indifferent Wonder of an Edible Place” a stunning storytelling experience. Each verse and each bite line perfectly up with each other, making the dramaturgy of this game highly remarkable. Political protest in the most sublime form.