Judging by the other types of games on this site, I knew that it was going to use both subtle and strong imagery to show that McDonald’s is a truly demonic corporation. Right from the start, my views were confirmed when a sinister looking Ronald McDonald appeared on the opening screen. This imagery set the tone for how the game was going to be set up. Ronald McDonald is also much bigger in size, indicating that nothing else compares to what McDonald’s stands for- it is bigger, better, and stronger than you. The picture is accompanied with a quote that says, “You will discover all the dirty secrets that made us one of the biggest companies in the world.” This quote blatantly shows that McDonald’s is not an honest corporation and that they house many “dirty secrets” that the general public does not know.
After the aforementioned imagery, the game brings you to the menu which has a typical McDonald’s meal of a burger, fries, and soft drink. However, there is a pool of blood beneath the tray. Obviously, the game is not trying to say that blood is on the menu, but that in order to enjoy a meal at the restaurant, there is much blood shed and brutal activity behind it. The game is split up into four sections: agricultural, feedlot, fast food, and headquarters. The player must manage all four sectors in order to efficiently earn money.
Each section of the game contributes to sending a message about the malicious intent of McDonald’s. For example, in the agricultural tab, the player must destroy land and housing in other countries to make room for crops and cattle. The company must show a complete disregard for other nations as long as it results in financial success for McDonald’s. Also, in the feedlot, the player must feed the cows steroids and industrial waste, even though it is a health hazard. Why must you do this? To cut costs and be as financially efficient as possible. Anything goes when you need to make a profit in this game.
When the player inevitably loses, a very ominous looking picture of Ronald McDonald comes up saying, “shame on you, you bankrupted our company. Years and years of corporate culture have been destroyed.” I think this is an interesting message because it shows that when you are unable to do evil things efficiently, you lose. When things become not as malicious as McDonald’s would like, the game ends. This just shows that in order for McDonald’s to thrive and succeed, one must handle the everyday evils correctly. It has been doing it since the 1940s and continues to do it today.
The imagery, mechanics of the game, and rules and processes all contribute to skewing the McDonald’s image. It takes players through an experience in order to become familiar with how running a giant corporation like McDonald’s requires many questionable activities. One must exploit other countries, maintain poor working environment, and completely disregard moral values. In doing so, a successful corporation giant can be built from the ground up. As opposed to McDonald’s getting to feed the mouths of the players with tainted food, the developers of the game get to feed the players with educated information on such a controversial topic.