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Swine Flu: The Video Game

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While it might not actually be Swine Flu: The Video Game, a flash game created by Dutch researches aims to raise the awareness of similar outbreaks by having the player control the deadly Gamers Flu.

The Great Flu casts the player as the head of the fictional World Pandemic Control. Pick a strain of flu based on difficulty level, and use your budget to help stop the spread of a potentially deadly disease. Should you distribute masks to the public, or broadcast public service announcements warning of the potential update? Should you start manufacturing vaccines, improve research facilities, or bring in a group of specialists? Even at the lowest difficulty the game delivers a sense of just how difficult it is to handle and contain the spread of a dangerous virus.

It does so with great charm though, with vibrate pink and orange graphics, and adorable smiley-faced skulls to represent difficult levels. They’ve even included the Gamers Flu as the second most difficult virus to contain.

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Pandemic players rejoice! =))

This Gaming Life: Travels in Three Cities

Jim Rossignol author of This Gaming Life: Travels in Three Cities:

I actually found it very difficult initially to come up with a cogent theme for the book! It developed quite a lot along the way, particularly in its focus on three cities. The structure of the book is broken up between London, Seoul, and Reykjavik, the London part being the most autobiographical. It’s me explaining my particular angle on gaming; moving into Seoul to talk about gaming cultures worldwide, particularly the differences between the west and Korea. Then the third section is Reykjavik, which I suppose is more personal once again, because it’s expressing some ideas and angles on a particular game—EVE Online, which was developed in Reykjavik by a company called CCP. I think there are some very interesting lessons and ideas in that game model. EVE, being a massively multi-player game, is never a static, fixed thing, as games have been in the past, and I think it points to the way games are going to work more as social systems, involving both the gamers and the developers. It creates a sort of symbiotic process where the developers are developing for and reacting to the way that gamers are using and doing the game. That stuff fascinates me.

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WoW Pod (Cati Vaucelle, ΜΙΤ Media Lab)

Now this *is* good! =)

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The WOW Pod is an immersive architectural solution for the advanced WOW (World of Warcraft) player that provides and anticipates all life needs. Inside, the gamer finds him/herself comfortable seated in front of the computer screen with easy-to-reach water, pre-packaged food, and a toilet conveniently placed underneath his/her custom-built throne.

When hungry, the gamer selects a food item (‘Crunchy Spider Surprise’, ‘Beer Basted Ribs’, etc.) and a seasoning pack. By scanning in the food items, the video game physically adjusts a hot plate to cook the item for the correct amount of time…

Hat tip: kostis

The Path, ou « Le Petit chaperon rouge » sous acide (Rue89)

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The Path tente la transgression des règles communément établies pour un jeu vidéo et teste le joueur dans son conformisme. Acceptera-t-il d’incarner un personnage innocent et inoffensif dans cette mission suicide sans même avoir une seule chance de se battre afin d’échapper à son funeste destin ?

Le titre du studio Tale of Tales met ainsi à terre les ficelles du jeu vidéo, il n’entretient pas le joueur dans une illusion de liberté et d’héroïsme, la mort attend au tournant et il est impossible d’y échapper, autant l’accepter et courir la rencontrer.

Dans « Le Petit chaperon rouge », la mort est le Loup, mais « tous les loups ne sont pas de la même sorte » disait Charles Perrault. Ainsi, s’il peut prendre plusieurs formes, chacune des six sœurs rencontrera son loup dans des situations qui suggèrent la mort tout en laissant le joueur libre dans son interprétation…

*Le site du jeu Path