Wednesday, May 14, 2008

I'm a gamer

I played several games on the different sites provided. The first game I played was concerning the presidential election. It was called presidential pong and you compete as a president against another president. The first time I played I was john McCain and I learned quickly that each candidate has “special powers. McCain’s special powers where that his is a military vet. Obama’s special powers were Lincoln’s state house and Giuliani’s was the ability to recognize his name. I lost every game because I was not fast enough to keep up with the ping pong ball, but found that I learned very little from this game. There was no real information given about these candidates and in order to win you only needed to beat the other candidate in the game. Another game I played way Airport Insecurity. This game showed the different tradeoffs and inconveniences of flying and whether or not it is really effective in the war against terror. This game was not very user friendly, many other users had complained and I found it very difficult to even figure out what you are trying to do in the game. Once I got the hang of it, I was still unable to score anything above 50 points. The Next Game I played was very interactive and informative, FATWORLD, takes you into a world of nutrition and is set up very similar to a second life setting. You design your character and body weight and then you go into the town and you try and live a healthy life. You can go grocery shopping, buy fast food, go exercise, buy a house, start a restaurant, and even create recipes. This game was a lot more interesting to play because it was so interactive, as a character you choose everything you are going to do and you goal is to live to be 100. You can what your progress as time passes and even see the amount of calories consumed and works off. It was fun to see my avatar like character change throughout one year playing the game. I tried to eat as much junk as possible and at the end of the year I had developed diabetes and hypertension. It is a social impact game because it aims at teaching you the right way to live to be healthy, the only problem I have with is the fact that you are sitting in front of your computer while playing it when you could be getting outside and burning real calories. The last game that I also really like was called Mapjib. It is a game that teaches you to speak Korean by observing and listening to a conversation between two avatars. The game itself is kind of boring, but I liked it because I felt like it could be a successful way of teaching and learning other languages. I have heard that many people who come to America not speaking the language will learn to speak English by watching American TV and American Movies. This game follows that same premise except it gives the English translation and gives key phrases that people of all languages use on a daily basis. I think that it would be a good teaching tool for anyone trying to speak any language. I spent a lot of time on these sites, testing out different games, many seemed pointless and without any social context, but the ones that attempted to show something relevant to our society were the one that were the most interesting and fun to play. I was amazed to see the number of games that were available for anyone to play there were games to teach chemistry, games about food imports, sexual orientation games, games about the McDonalds corp and more. Some of them seems like they were trying to make fun of American in some way, like the airport games and fat world game. I can see the satirical creativity that went into these games to make a point. Specifically I found the president candidate funny because the debate/ping pong match seems to be pointing out the absurdity of you political system right now. I found that all of the games were pretty creative and tried to make a point… most of them accomplished that.

1 comment:

Mollie said...

After reading this post, I went to try out the Fatworld game. it was really entertaining, and I actually thought of an idea that they could add to it. Everyone is always trying new diets, and I thought that if someone could make a character with their exact BMI, then they could try the diets our virtually on their character before attempting them in real life. Obviously it won't be exact, but the food choices within the game could be limited to only what the diet allows, which would also help the user remember what they can and can't eat.
I think the concept of this game is potentially very beneficial to the American public... If no one starts listening to their doctors, there needs to be a better and more effective way to help them learn about healthy choices and lifestyles.
It would also be cool to see a significant indication of how stress (like moving) affects your health. This was definitely a fun game, and people can learn a lot from it.