Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Social Impact Gaming

I am not someone who usually engages in video games online. It has never really been my forte, but I tried to go about this assignment with an open mind. The first game that I played was Dying for Darfur. Darfur is a situation that I am very familiar with, so I thought it would be interesting to see how this situation translated into a video game. Although it was very informative with the facts about the refugee camps and the foraging for water game, I cannot honestly say that this website increased my knowledge of the situation in Darfur.

The next game that I played was the McDonald's social impact game. This game was more difficult than anything else, trying to perform all of the activities to keep everyone happy and the company making money. I must say I never thought about all of the individual decisions that go into making a business run successfully. I thought it was interesting that the environmentalists would be angry over the cutting down of the rain forest, but not over the over slaughtering of the beef. All in all, this game was pretty entertaining and did try to bring to light the impacts that McDonald's has in the business, environmental and consumer world.

I am still not convinced of the avenue of social impact games, but I think that it will be interesting to see where this medium will go in the years to come.

1 comment:

moniquesandoval said...

In response to Libby's comment, I also tried to play the McDonald's game, as well, and found it rather difficult. I read the instructions twice and was still quite unclear on what I was suppose to be doing. But soon, I got the hand of it and played for about 45 minutes. As Libby said, it was very interesting to see all the different types of decisions it takes in order to successfully run a business like that of McDonald's. The player must consistently switch between the agricultural, the fast food chains and the headquarters to order to ensure that each section is working properly and providing sufficient goods so that everything will run smoothly in another section.

The game definitely gets one thinking about all the business aspects that corporations like McDonald's, must do in order to ensure success. They must make sure that all aspects of that business are in correlation and are running effectively so that they may survive and thrive.

I must admit, I am not a "gamer" in the least bit, but this game was pretty easy to maneuver, once I understood it. Yet, I must admit, that some of the games where easy to see a the social impact connection they were attempting to convey, however others were not.