Is ISIS using GTA V to recruit gamers?

Terrorist organisation ISIS has apparently turned to video games in an effort to recruit more young people to its ranks. A new video seems to show footage from Grand Theft Auto V as it invites viewers to “do the things you do in games, in real life on the battlefield”.

ISIS is one of the most feared (and hated) organisations in the world today, as it combines unspeakable brutality with a terrifyingly clever use of social media. The group has released videos showing American and British hostages being beheaded and other acts of horrific violence, sharing them via YouTube to an international audience.

The new video – shown below – might not be shocking in its own right, but it has still gained online traction. It shows footage from GTA V (possibly GTA Online), overlaid with the ISIS logo and various Arabic phrases.

Egyptian media is reporting that the footage has been crafted to “raise the morale of the Mujahideen, and the training of children and young teenagers to fight the West, and throw terror into the hearts of opponents of the state.”

The contents of the video show gameplay elements of GTA V that are possible in the base game, but analysts are unsure whether this is just carefully edited gameplay or whether ISIS is claiming to have created a modded version of GTA V to use as a training tool.

GTA V has sold more than $2B worth of copies since it was released last year, and with the PS4, Xbox One and PC versions launching soon, it’s definitely a game with a broad international audience.

Publisher Rockstar Games has not made any public comment about the game being apparently used as a terrorist recruiting tool.

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