Can I Play Video Games with Unlawful Symbols or Content?

Shafi'i Fiqh

Answered by Shaykh Irshaad Sedick


There’s a video game about spaceships. The only issue is that the game has an insurance system that automatically takes game money. Sometimes you give it to the system if someone kills your ship. I will not use this game money as real-life money to buy but earn it by playing. Will this be considered gambling since people can sell accounts for money these days?

Also, I heard playing a game that has kufr makes you a disbeliever. So does that mean if a game has a cross symbol, it is unlawful?


In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate. We pray that Allah guides us to make the best use of our short time on earth and facilitate beautiful ways to find rejuvenation in forms that please Him.

Toy money or game money has no significance in the real world and will not be governed by the rules about money. Playing games with unlawful content is unlawful, but a simple symbol is not necessarily enough to render an entire game unlawful, and Allah knows best.

Rulings Concerning Games

Other than games involving prize money, every game played by two or more people that relies on luck, conjecture, and guessing, is unlawful (whether money is stipulated or not). Every game not of the above category is permissible if there is no money therein.  Any of the things mentioned above that are permissible become unlawful if they prevent one from performing a religious or this-worldly duty. [Keller, Reliance of the Traveler]

The Cross Symbol

The feature of the ‘+’ symbol in a game does not render the game problematic.  The described logo (without the long line extending down) is not synonymous with Christianity or another religion or cult. It is a renowned medical (and mathematics) sign, and Allah knows best.

I pray this is of benefit and that Allah guides us all.

[Shaykh] Irshaad Sedick
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Irshaad Sedick was raised in South Africa in a traditional Muslim family. He graduated from Dar al-Ulum al-Arabiyyah al-Islamiyyah in Strand, Western Cape, under the guidance of the late world-renowned scholar, Shaykh Taha Karaan. 

Shaykh Irshaad received Ijaza from many luminaries of the Islamic world, including Shaykh Taha Karaan, Mawlana Yusuf Karaan, and Mawlana Abdul Hafeez Makki, among others.

He is the author of the text “The Musnad of Ahmad ibn Hanbal: A Hujjah or not?” He has served as the Director of the Discover Islam Centre and Al Jeem Foundation. For the last five years till present, he has served as the Khatib of Masjid Ar-Rashideen, Mowbray, Cape Town.

Shaykh Irshaad has thirteen years of teaching experience at some of the leading Islamic institutes in Cape Town). He is currently building an Islamic online learning and media platform called ‘Isnad Academy’ and pursuing his Master’s degree in the study of Islam at the University of Johannesburg. He has a keen interest in healthy living and fitness.