THE FIRST WIDE AREA MEGAGAME
By Jim Wallman
The Horde Is Coming to Southampton
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(see how the game will play)
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The zombie apocalypse trope is well established in literature, movies, computer and board games. And in megagames too, with the first series of Urban Nightmare megagames played in 2012.
As a megagame, the Urban Nightmare games explore the higher level decision making during a major, potentially existential, crisis. In the movies and other games the zombie trope generally focusses on the individual or on small groups of survivors, but rarely explores how the world gets to that state. It all just happened and got out of control.
In a megagame we can really look at how things get that far out of control. Or not. In the emerging gameplay of a megagame the outcome is entirely open to the consequences of player decisions and their interactions.
In the previous version of the game, the focus was on just one city – Romero City – a place beset with many mundane problems of its own even without the outbreak of a terrifying pandemic. In UN: State of Chaos, we have extended the perspective to explore what is happening across the whole state. Five cities (of which Romero City is the largest) are all struggling with their own troubles and turning to the State Governor and the National Guard for help. Will this be enough? or will the state Governer have to sacrifice valuable political capital and go, cap in hand, to the Federal authorities and the President for Federal help.
And the WIDE AREA MEGAGAME (WAM)?
So – of course – there is more than just one state in America. What if the crisis is cropping up in more than one state? Together with partners all over the world we are organising multiple megagames, each megagame representing a different state of a fictionalised America containing different cities.
Those games both stand alone as individual megagames yet are in touch with each other, and are played in exactly the same time frame on the same day. So, for example, Governors of neighbouring states will be able to confer with their counterparts – pass on what they have learned, or warn of cross-border threats.
And there will be an overall Federal team in touch with all the games and allocating important resources, in real time, to where they are most needed.
This is the first time we have attempted anything like this, so it is an exciting project for Megagame Makers, and megagames in general. And you can be a part of that!