'Kill Mittal' game capitalises on French workers' struggle
A new French online game is allowing players to step into the shoes of an ArcelorMittal worker by fighting police and a robot version of Lakshmi Mittal to keep a factory open.
Players throw barrels and beams at police in the ‘Kill Mittal’ game inspired by the long-lasting struggle in France’s northeastern town of Florange to stop the closure of steel blast furnaces owned by Mittal.
“This game is not an incitement to violence or to beat up the big bosses. I purposefully chose the cartoon style and you never see blood,” said Alexandre Grilletta, founder of the video game. “The story of the Florange workers was just a good topic, with heroes and baddies, the ingredients to make a good video game,” he said.
The closure of the ArcelorMittal-owned steel plant has been the subject of much grief in France. Mittal appears in the game as a robot and players have to rally other workers to help them rebel against security forces by fighting with weapons at their disposal such as big beams or cars.
“In 2030, Mittal has taken hold of, and closed, the majority of steel factories worldwide, tossing out thousands of steelworkers,” the game explains. “For these men tired of unfulfilled promises and repeated closures, when all mediation has failed, there is just one solution: Kill Mittal.”
Once the robot is defeated, however, the game reminds the player that this was one struggle and that Mittal will be replaced by another.