Friday, December 08, 2006

Online gaming to feed the world

I would really, really love to see Village: The Game succeed. That's a bit because the particular genre of computer game known as "real-time strategy" is one of my favorite forms of recreation, and even more due to wholehearted agreement with the issue being addressed and with the policy approach that the creators of the thing are applying to that issue.

I wish I could offer some optimism about the project's chances though...reading their website leaves me thinking that nobody who's actually played a lot of robust RTS games is involved. The game-design discussion on that website is all about look and feel and not at all about what actually makes such a game work or not work for real-life players today, namely its internal design and gamebalance. An analogy would be, if you're a serious movie fan, reading that the director and producer of an upcoming movie are spending all their time worrying about the costumes and makeup without any focus on the script. One of the early warning signs of a straight-t0-video outcome right?

(If you are a strategy gamer I will make a current topical analogy: thinking that what makes a computer strategy game successful is the pretty graphics and cool sounds leads to lame failures like Sid Meier's Railroads rather than completely-addictive bestselling hits like Civilization IV.)

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