: Quartz: Russia bans a Polish board game that simulates Communist-era shopping

17:27 Mar. 25, 2016

Quartz: Russia bans a Polish board game that simulates Communist-era shopping

Karol Madaj of Poland's state National Remembrance Institute in Warsaw, Poland on Tuesday, Jan.25, 2011, shows how to play Kolejka (The Queue), a new card game he authored to show young Poles what hardships their parents and grandparents endured befo

Russian authorities decided popular Polish game disseminates anti-Soviet content

The fraught relationship between Russia and Poland is playing out in an unexpected way: in a conflict over a board game. 

The Russian version of the "Queue," which simulates the experience of shopping in the empty stores of communist-era Poland, was released in Russia in November 2015.

Several months later, the country's consumer protection agency Rospotrebnadzor informed the game's Polish producer TREFL that if it does not change the historical content of the game, it would have to take all of its products that are on the Russian market out of circulation, according to IPN, the Polish historical institute behind the game.

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IPN says that Russians have been allegedly filing complaints to authorities, outraged by a negative description of the communist system, and by the information that the Soviet Union had forcibly installed a communist regime in another country. For Poles, who lived under a Soviet-backed communist regime for nearly five decades, the historical irony is palpable.

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