Wednesday, May 14, 2008



If I were to create my own social impact game I think I would do something that has to do with the repercussions our material life has on happiness. I think I would make it similar to FATWORLD game but instead of measure consumption of food to health I would measure consumption of material goods, things that are not necessary to personal happiness. I would allow the avatar to create there own look and to pick a profession based on how much money they want to make, then I would give the avatar the options to buy products like cars, clothes, houses, etc. Somehow I would find the relationship between the two and calculate the level of happiness. My game would also include different things that can happen to an individual. For example one character with a lot of money may get sued at his or her work… they loose all of their money in the lawsuit and now they are broke. Through the game the catastrophes would affect the persons life especially a person who wants a lot of material things. For those characters that do not have or want a lot, the catastrophe would affect them to a lesser degree meaning that their happiness would only waver a little in comparison. My goal of the game would be to show the over consumption of not only our society but how over consumption stems first from the individual. In an attempt to show that, I hope that the character would see that money and material things does not necessarily bring happiness and that anything could happen at anytime and you could loose it all. I think it would be funny to have some absurdity in the game, like having a character loose all of his or her money to a pirate. I may also use the amount of money earned to dictate what catastrophe should happen to the character. I think this would be a good social impact game because in our society so much is driven by our desirous nature, our need to fill some gap with material goods. I think it would be interesting to see how people would respond to this game and if they could lean anything from it. I think that there are many other things I could add to this game. For example other repercussions of our materialistic attitudes like global warming, overpopulation and other things that are greatly influencing us today. I think that by creating a game focused on looking at our materialistic culture many players would see the correlation between our society and the way we behave.


Mackai said...

Funny idea.. it would be really interesting to see how many people, if given the opportunity, would chose riches over "happiness". How would you measure an avatar's happiness though? And would it be like a psychology experiemtn in that you wouldnt tell them what you're measuring so they dont guess the best way to "win" the game?

Mollie said...

Haha, this is seems like a pretty entertaining game. However people who don't want to admit that material things affect them negatively might be less inclined to play, so maybe you could add an incentive. Like if they play for a certain amount of time they get a gift certificate to a place of their choice... I know that contradicts the purpose, but maybe if the game works then they won't spend it on material things but instead food or something... just a way to get the right people playing.
Also, I think it would be really cool to add the element of not letting the material things "go to their head". What I mean is, say if someone got a ton of money with the lottery or a huge raise, even though their happiness would go down, the way the game is "played" would be by trying to keep it down despite their collection of material goods. Like by putting it into a savings account for college tuition, donating to a charity, supporting fund-raisers. That way people who do have money and won't actually be losing it any time soon can start to brainstorm or learn good ways to take advantage of it. What do you think?
Great idea!