We’re always looking for ways to celebrate indigenous culture in music, books, film, and TV. It turns out that video games have also tapped into pre-Columbian culture, though mostly in the ’80s and ’90s, and mostly in a sort of stereotyped or simplified way.
Ideally, we’d see more games like the one Mexican studio Lienzo set out to make earlier this year about the Rarámuri tribe, Mexico’s world-famous community of endurance runners, which set out to tell the Rarámuri tribe’s stories in a playable format. Though they were able to raise more than $10,000 to fund the project on Kickstarter, they fell short of their $77,000 goal.
We don’t know when video games will finally give indigenous culture their due shine, but we know that we hope it’s not half-assed or treated as something exotic.
In the meantime, here are five games inspired by pre-Columbian cultures you can check out if you’re tired of playing Pac-Man at the arcade.
'Montezuma's Revenge', for Atari.
'Speedy Gonzales: Aztec Adventure', for Game Boy.