Remembrance Day 2022: A History Of World Wars Through Gaming
There’s something about trundling through the muddy trenches, bayonet in hand as we head out into No Man’s Land, that us gamers have always loved.
Whether it’s sniping your way behind enemy lines in 1944 France on Sniper 5, completing errands across war-torn London for Winston Churchill in Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate or escorting British bombers on an assault on German bases in 1917 with Battlefield 1; video games have put us at the heart of some of history’s most compelling and darkest moments.
With Remembrance Day 2022 and Remembrance Sunday taking place on Friday 11and Sunday November, we’re doing our bit to remember the service andsacrifice of those that have defended our freedoms. Read on for a brief historyof World War I and II through video games.
What is Remembrance Day and why do we mark it?
Remembrance Day is a national opportunity to remember the Armed Forces, and their families, fromBritain and the Commonwealth, the vital role played by the emergency services and those who have lost their lives as a result of conflict or terrorism.
Following a tradition started by King George V in 1919, the day is held on the 11thNovember, as World War I was ended at the 11 hour of the 11day of the 11 month in 1918. In the U.K. Remembrance Sunday isheld on the Sunday nearest to the 1, and is marked with poppywreaths, marches, and minute silences.
We like to do things a little differently at Venom. Just like we empower you to level up your gaming experience with our accessories for Nintendo, PlayStation, and Xbox, we want to educate and empower you to learn more about our history and culture. So without further ado, here’s a handful of games you can revisit for your own Remembrance Day festivities.
Verdun – 1916
2015’s Verdun is the first multiplayer first-person shooter set in a realistic First World War setting. Inspired by the infamous Battle of Verdun, in 1916 France, the game captures the longest battle of the First World War on the hills of Verdun-sur-Meuse with realistic weaponry, authentic uniforms and maps based on the real battlefields of France and Belgium.
Getting stuck into its merciless trench warfare and unique battlefield experiences, you can choose to play as either the Central Powers or the Triple Entente. If you want to playa game that looks and feels like the real thing, and learn about this legendary battle, Verdun is a good place to start.
Rise of Flight: The First Great Air War – 1914 – 1918
If you needed a reminder that the First World War wasn’t just fought on the ground, Rise of Flight is an ace way to take to the skies across war-torn Europe. With 40aircraft models based on original blueprints and historical data to choose from, such as the Nieuport 17 and Felixstowe F.2a, players can fly across over 150,000 square kilometres of accurately recreated Western and Eastern fronts.
Rise of Flight is as educational as it is fun, as it’s campaign mode introduces you to legendary pilots like Manfred von Richtofen, James McCudden, Georges Guynemer and Eddie Rickenbacker. You’ll move around different squadrons, taking part in the kind of combat missions your historical counterparts would’ve faced.
Battlefield 1 – 1915-1918
Battlefield 1 might not be the most realistic World War I experience when it comes to the battlefield, but it does do justice to those who sacrificed their lives in the stories it tells.
Across it’s six-chapter campaign called ‘War Stories’, you’ll meet the Harlem Hellfighters (a regiment of African Americans who spent more time in frontline trenches than any other American unit), an Australian messenger during the Gallipoli Campaign in 1915, and a Bedouin soldier working alongside T.E. Lawrence – who you might know better as Lawrence of Arabia.
Starting in 1915 and running all the way to the autumn of 1918, as you seize an Austro-Hungarian fortress in Northern Italy, the campaign carefully captures and retells the stories of World War I from a diverse cast of perspectives. Whilst not all stories are happy endings, Battlefield I paints a picture of the world at war.
Call of Duty: WWII –1944
It wouldn’t be a history of World Wars in video games without including Call of Duty. Activision’s legendary FPS is no stranger to the World Wars, but it’s Call of Duty: WWII’s retelling of Operation Overlord that sets it apart from the rest.
Landing in Normandy on D-Day, you’re thrust into the thick of it. Tying together classic combat, the bonds of camaraderie, and the unforgiving nature of war, Call of Duty: WWIIfocuses on the 1st Infantry Division and their battles on theWestern Front. Based on the Battle of Normandy, the operation that launched thesuccessful invasion of Germany-occupied Western Europe, it’s campaign sees youfighting through history with guts and glory.
World of Warships – The First & Second World Wars
Just like Rise of Flight takes the fight to the sky, World of Warships tells the tales of the battles fought across the sea. Plunging you into global naval history, you’ll take command of over 200 ships, dating back to the First and Second World Wars.
Take control of a nation of your choice – from the United Kingdom and the U.S.A. to Germany and Italy, as well as ships from Pan-Asia, Pan-America, and the Commonwealth – and study the specifics, advantages, and shortcomings to devise successful strategies for winning at sea.
World of Warships offers a fully realistic experience, as you submerge yourself in the atmosphere of ocean battles. With rain, snow, and fog all possible, you have to navigate the very real forces of nature that can change these historic battles.
Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate (1914-1916)
We’re sure you weren’t expecting to see an Assassin’s Creed game here, but we thought we’d throw in a curveball at the end of our list for good measure. Whilst Syndicate spends most of its time during the Second Industrial Revolution of 1868, you do have the opportunity to play as Jacob Fyre’s granddaughter Lydia at the outbreak of World War I.
You’ll complete a series of quests for Winston Churchill – who was then the Minister of Munitions for the British government – which will see you track down German spy radios, shoot down enemy aircraft, and stop fanatical groups roaming the streets of London.
It’s a quirky way of recapturing historical events in a game that definitely ran with its wacky interpretation of history.