Egypt-Themed Games That’ll Get You Ready For A Trip To The Pyramids
There are few countries on Earth that are as famous for their past and have such modern-day appeal as Egypt. It is a spectacular, beautiful place full of cultural and historical landmarks. From the Pyramids of Giza to the Red Sea Riviera, Egypt is a breathtaking marvel with a history that goes back further than most other countries. Needless to say, it’s no surprise that year after year tourists travel to the Land of the Riverbank in the millions, in search of ancient wonders and contemporary culture.
As is the case for many countries, travel and tourism are a huge part of Egypt’s economy. In a 2018 Economic Impact study carried out by the World Travel & Tourism Council, it was revealed travel and tourism accounted for 11% of Egypt’s total gross domestic product (GDP) in 2017. This percentage was forecast to rise by a massive 3.8% by the end of 2018. If the trend continues, by 2028 the Egyptian tourism industry may be contributing as much as $33.9 billion to the country’s GDP. As for employment, the report states that at least 8.5% of all the jobs in Egypt are related to tourism in some way, though this will rise to 8.9% by 2028.
“Fascinating Egyptian tales”
Considering the fact that more people than ever are predicted to visit Egypt over the coming years – and well, because you’re reading this article – we assume you yourself will probably be travelling to Egypt in the near future. Now, there are plenty of different sources where you can find fascinating Egyptian tales. You could watch the infamous Mummy franchise if you want to kick back with Brendan Frasier for a bit. However, do bear in mind that very little of what happens in those movies is historically (or even mythologically) accurate. Alternatively, you could read some of the many books published about Egypt, be they fictional such as Christian Jacq’s Ramses series or purely educational.
For some reason though, we assume you’re a big games fan. Don’t ask us how we came to that conclusion. With that in mind, here we’ll be delving into the world of Egyptian-themed games, many of which are sure to inspire you before you head to the pyramids for real. Whether you’re an old-school console gamer, a PC player, a slots fan or a VR crusader, there’s sure to be at least one game in our article that will keep you entertained – Egypt-style.
From Tomb Raider To Assassin’s Creed: A Brief Overlook of Games Set in Egypt
Throughout the years, Egypt has appeared in all forms of media from books to movies and, more recently, video games. Even in the early days of gaming when home consoles and computers were still considered a luxury, Egypt had a strong presence in many of the titles.
In 1994, Twisted Metal III was released on the PlayStation, featuring an entire level set in The Valley of the Kings. Fans of this series may even remember Calypso’s monologue about the desert landscape, in which he laments that “ancient rulers of the Nile never would have dreamed that one of the greatest battles of all time would take place on top of their tombs!” Just two years later, the very first Tomb Raider was released, and it was no surprise that the inaugural title (and many of the sequels) included Egypt’s world-renowned tombs. In fact, much of Tomb Raider: Last Revelation (1999) is set in Egypt, as Lara visits Karnak, Alexandria, Cairo and Giza in search of ancient artefacts.
Tomb Raider isn’t the only big franchise that loves returning to Egypt either. Additional examples abound, with Battlefield, Call of Duty and Command & Conquer all choosing various Egyptian cities as a backdrop on multiple occasions. Other games were based entirely in and on Egypt, such as Pharaoh (1999), The Dagger of Amon Ra (1992) and the popular Egypt series.
It doesn’t seem as though the idea of using Egypt as a central location is going away any time soon either, with many recent and upcoming titles focusing on the Land of the Pyramids. The most famous video game in recent times to be set in Egypt is, of course, Assassin’s Creed Origins (2017), in which you play as a Medjay named Bayek as he battles (or sneaks) towards the end of the Ptolemaic period of Ancient Egypt. As for future games, there are still rumours about God of War instalments being set in Egypt at some point, though you’re likely to have already visited the place yourself by the time that happens.
Las Vegas & Universal Appeal: The Story of the Egyptian-Themed Slot
Those of you with a keen eye may have noticed that we are yet to talk about one genre of gaming that is almost as famous for embracing Egyptian themes as it is for featuring fruit symbols. That’s right: slot machines. These days, it’s basically impossible to visit a traditional brick-and-mortar or online casino without seeing at least one vibrantly coloured Sphinx head or a variety of hieroglyphs.
Popular slots in this popular genre include Pharaoh of Egypt, Golden Egypt, Mega Moolah and Book of Pyramids, but believe us when we say they are the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Egypt-themed slots. By far the most famous of all these titles though is Cleopatra, a five-reel slot from IGT packed full of everything the world loves about Egypt. According to this Cleopatra themed slot page on Wink Bingo, Cleopatra was not only the first slot to use Egypt as a theme, but it was also one of the first slots to appear in Las Vegas where it quickly gained enormous attention. To this day, the game has a cult following that has been difficult for any other slot machine to compete with.
It is this slot game that perhaps best illustrates why people love Egypt and Egyptian-themed games so much. There are so many different aspects of Egyptian mythology and life that people from all around the world recognise almost instantly, and Cleopatra has them all. Hieroglyphs, the Sphinx and Cleopatra herself are icons that transcend borders, societies and cultures. They are universally recognised, and yet for many, they remain foreign enough from our everyday lives to remain incredibly intriguing.
As Wink Bingo explain perfectly; “just as these rudiments of ancient Egyptian culture continue to be explored and thought about in modern times, so too does Cleopatra slots remain a firm staple in casinos across the world.” The same can be applied to the many other games with Egyptian themes that we’ve mentioned, the ones that remain popular to this day.
Virtual Reality Can Bring Egypt To You Before You Head There
“Scan every inch of the tomb”
Still don’t have enough games to play to get you ready for a great trip to Giza or a rollicking adventure to the Valley of the Kings? Well then, you may have to just step in the modern world of gaming completely and join us in the virtual reality world.
Last year, virtual reality (VR) took over Egypt in a variety of ways. For starters, Egypt got its very first VR experience hub named Genesis in New Cairo back in September, allowing visitors to access a library of VR games. The hub was founded by four dedicated university students, Assem Adel, Bassem William, Mostafa Adel and Tony Oncy, who saw that there was a huge gap in the Egyptian entertainment market when it came to VR experiences.
As for VR games based on, rather than in, Egypt, 2018 also gave us Nefertari: Journey to Eternity. This immersive, educational VR experience was published on Steam in July by CuriosityStream, who are also responsible for Destination: Pluto The VR Experience. In their newest release, players are able to journey through the real-world tomb of Nefertari, situated in the Valley of the Queens. While virtually there, you can scan every inch of the tomb with millimetre accuracy to experience the Egyptian landmark as though you were actually there.
While Nefertari: Journey to Eternity may be the only Egyptian-themed VR experience on Steam as of writing this, there’s a whole world of VR videos available on sites like YouTube. A simple search reveals hundreds of different titles for you to peruse, some taking place in temples, others in tombs, some in pyramids. There’s even a particularly weird Egypt Roller Coaster option.
With so many games, from video console releases and slots to virtual reality experiences, based on Egypt we’re sure you’ll have plenty to do before you go on your Egyptian adventure. In fact, there’s a good chance you’ll be just as knowledgeable about the place as your tour guides, though maybe doublecheck some of the histories that video games show you before blurting it out.