Election War Room 2012 Kickstarter Launches

July 30, 2012 -

A Kickstarter campaign for Election War Room has been launched, with the hopes of securing enough funding from the crowd to finish the development of this election-year strategy board game for iOS-based devices.

Help Angela Merkel Flip Out in LeaderFlip

July 25, 2012 -

It isn't particularly sophisticated, but klutzGames' Windows Phone 7 release of LeaderFlip does let players (particularly those in Germany) have a bit of fun with Chancellor of Germany and Chairwoman of the Christian Democratic Union Angela Merkel -- I mean Angie Makel. The game lets you play as a caricature of the German Chancellor who you must send to the moon by flipping her upwards on platforms using a simple game mechanic and a variety of power-ups that include beer, sausage, and beans.

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Political Rampage Released

June 13, 2012 -

FiveOneNine Games has released its first iOS game today called Political Rampage. The game gives players control of "outrageous caricatures" of famous American politicians who battle in quick match-three battles to win debates on the campaign trail. The items you will be matching in the game are issues important to the voting public.

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Report: Ron Paul Game Uses Assets From Other Games

April 26, 2012 -

When you think of news sources, Something Awful probably doesn't come to mind, but one of its writers took some time away from writing jokes to point out a few odd things with the Ron Paul: Road to REVOLution game that has managed to rake in over $10,000 from a highly publicized Kickstarter campaign. SA obtained access to the developer's server and found that his game uses assets borrowed from other games.

MTV Launches Fantasy Election '12 Social Game

April 25, 2012 -

MTV has revamped and fine-tuned its "get out the vote" campaign (Rock The Vote) with a gamification scheme that will feature several parts including a viral online campaign and a game that mixes fantasy football gameplay with 2012 election year politics. The gaming part of the equation is called Fantasy Election '12, and will give those who sign up to it "points" for registering to vote, watching debates, and publicly supporting candidates who do not engage in shady campaign financing or mudslinging. 

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The Ron Paul: Road to Revolution Leads to The Federal Reserve

April 9, 2012 -

Presidential candidate Ron Paul probably won't get the Republican party nomination, but he will appear in at least two video games. I guess that's something... The two video games are Stardock's Political Machine 2012 and an odd platformer called Ron Paul: Road to Revolution.

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The Political Machine 2012 Coming This Summer

April 3, 2012 -

Stardock announced that it will release its latest election year strategy simulation game, Political Machine 2012, this summer. The game will let you pick from various candidates including President Barack Obama, Republican candidates Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, and Newt Gingrich, or a politician that you create from scratch. The game can be played in a one-on-one election year match up against the game's AI or against a human opponent via the Internet.

President George Washington a Bad Guy in BioShock Infinite

March 8, 2012 -

In a new video featuring Irrational's Ken Levine the company reveals one of the bosses that players will face off against in BioShock Infinite: America’s first president. Players will have to fight a Gatling-gun wielding robotic George Washington, dubbed a "heavy hitter" by Levine. The Washington automaton is the creation of Columbia's ruling faction, the Founders, and was originally designed as a tour guide to show the highlights and greatness of the floating city.

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Exploring The Gamification of Politics

November 14, 2011 -

Some people are getting sick of hearing about gamification, but marketers and other groups are finding the idea of making the mundane fun to be a fascinating concept. Politicians and political campaigns are also starting to tap into the concept of gamification as different candidates attempt to break through to constituents of varying age groups. Political strategists think gamification is a powerful tool for identifying and engaging the public.

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Political Themes in BioShock Infinite Mirror OWS, Tea Party

October 28, 2011 -

Irrational Games’ creative director Ken Levine spoke to the Washington Post recently about the political themes behind the game and how the two opposing factions in the game share similarities with real-world movements including Occupy Wall Street and the Tea Party.

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Glen Beck on Tea Party Zombies Must Die

September 7, 2011 -

Newsmax has some rather slanted coverage of the Tea Party Zombies Must Die Flash-game we covered earlier, but what's noteworthy about the report is that it offers some comments from Glen Beck, who took issue with the game on his syndicated radio program this evening. On the show he said the following - according to Newsmax:

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Political Types Depicted in Games or as Game Characters During Campaigns, How Did They Fare?

November 3, 2010 -

During the run up to yesterday’s mid-term election, we profiled a few politicians that used web-based games or videogame-related images in order to either slam their opponent, or drum up interest in their own campaign. In some cases the games were even created by third parties not affiliated with either side in a race. Let’s check-in and see how these candidates did in yesterday’s elections.

Fight Night for New Mexico's Gubernatorial Candidates

October 16, 2010 -

New Mexico's gubernatorial candidates (Susana Martinez - R, Diane Denish - D) are duking it out on the air, in the newspapers, and now in a new Flash video game. But unlike the endless series of attack ads, the fist meets the face in this simple boxing game. The game is called New Mexico KnockOut, created by former Albuquerque native Max Barnett - now residing in Washington D.C.

Barnett says that opinions on the game vary; some think the game is funny, while others see it as "ill-willed." Barnett adds that there is no built-in advantage for either candidate.

You can play it here.

According to the Real Clear Politics average of polls, Martinez is ahead by 8 points. A recent Rasmussen Reports poll has Martinez ahead by 9 points.

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“Hackman” Game Used to Skewer Political Opponent

September 21, 2010 -

Missouri Congressman Russ Carnahan (D) has turned to a Pac-Man themed videogame in order to attack his Republican opponent in the race, Ed Martin.

Hackman” replaces the yellow videogame star with Martin’s head, and is part of an attempt by Carnahan to allude to a time three years ago when Martin was Chief of Staff to then Missouri Governor Matt Blunt and the pair underwent a “Memogate” scandal. Martin later resigned.

The game is introduced with the statement, "Ed Martin is Hackman,” while a sub header states, “He Plays Political Games. Missouri Families Lose.” In the game, Martin (Pac-Man) is chased by gavels, while power ups are represented by various icons relating to deleted emails, “costly lawsuits,” and “shady finances.” Scoring is tabulated as “Tax Dollars Wasted.”

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Pac-Man-Inspired Mayoral Race Game Draws Mixed Reactions

September 20, 2010 -

An online game featuring Toronto’s five mayoral candidates was designed to raise awareness of the race while perhaps providing a very informal look into who might win the October 25th election.

Mayor Munch, created by the OneStop Media Group is based on Pac-Man, and has players choose one of the five candidates— Rob Ford, Rocco Rossi, Sarah Thomson, Joe Pantalone, Giorgio Mammoliti or George Smitherman—to play as.

Results show how much each candidate was chosen, figures that might presumably correlate to their outcome in the election. As of today, Rossi was leading, having been selected as the on-screen avatar of choice 29% of the time, a number that directly contrasts figures showing Ford with a huge 24-point lead.

Iran Launches Anti-Israeli Games

September 2, 2010 -

The student arm of Basij, Iran’s paramilitary volunteer militia, has released a pair of new games that center on “crimes” of the “Zionist” Israeli regime.

One such game is called Assault on Freedom Convoy, which concerns the May 31st Israeli commando raid on activists trying to slip though a Gaza naval blockade. That action left nine Turkish activists dead. According to the Times of India, the game was described by Basijis as bringing to light the “crimes of the Zionist regime during the attack on the flotilla.”

The second game is called Devil Den 2, but no description of the game was offered.

Mohammad Reza Jokar, billed as the head of the Basij student organization, explained the use of games as a political tool, saying, “The young generation must find out about the Zionist regime and since video games enjoy large audiences, they were unveiled ahead of Quds Day.”

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Anti-Mosque Game Created by Austrian Political Party

September 1, 2010 -

An online videogame backed by the right wing Austrian Freedom Party (FPO), launched in advance of regional elections to be held on September 26, depicts the province of Styria as overrun with mosques and tasks players with stopping further ones from being built.

A Reuters story claims that the “Bye Bye Mosque” game has drawn over 60,000 visitors since Monday, in addition to criticisms from the local Islamic community, Social Democrats and the Green Party. A local Islamic leader named Anas Schakfeh called the game “tasteless and incomprehensible,” adding, “This is religious hatred and xenophobia beyond comparison.”

As the game ends, a message reads, “Styria is full of minarets and mosques. So vote for Dr. Gerhard Kurzmann (pictured) and the Freedom Party on September 26 so that this doesn’t happen.”

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EU Dumps €275k into Pedestrian Looking "Government RPG"

August 30, 2010 -

The European Service Network (ESN), operating under a budget of 275,000 Euros (approximately $349,000 U.S.) from the European Parliament's Directorate-General for Communication, is developing an online role-playing game—and social networking forum—that it hopes will capture “the essence of European Parliament.”

Named Citzalia, the online experience was compared to Second Life and will have users create an avatar before being able to,  “navigate around a virtual recreation of the actual Parliament, to create content, and to involve themselves in virtual law-making.”

The Politics Inside BioShock Infinite

August 18, 2010 -

An interesting post on Game | Life report (called "BioShock Infinite’s Vision of a Nazified America") takes a closer look at BioShock Infinite in an attempt to ascertain what the political message and creepy undertones Irrational has employed for its latest BioShock game. Interestingly, the topic and the underlying settings of the game seems to be focused on the turn-of-the-century proliferation of beliefs (and subsequent laws) based on "eugenics," which is described by this Wikipedia entry as "the study and practice of selective breeding applied to humans with the aim of improving the species."

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California Labor Federation-backed Game Mocks Whitman

July 15, 2010 -

The California Labor Federation is obviously not backing California Gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman (R).

Garage Sale Laptop Contains Underground Political Game

July 9, 2010 -

An Albuquerque, New Mexico man purchased a laptop for $100 at a garage sale and, after booting it up, was surprised to find an unpublished, underground political game from the 1990s, which took jabs at then Governor Gary Johnson.

The side-scrolling game, which depicts Governor Johnson as a “floating head of death,” was found on a PC purchased by New Mexico resident Alex Ortega. Local ABC affiliate KOAT tracked down the as-of-yet-unnamed creator of the game, who was so angered by government leaders in the 1990s that he created two video games, and even drafted a friend to drop copies of the games in the capitol mailboxes of certain lawmakers.

The laptop seemed to have once belonged to ex-New Mexico State Senator Manny Aragon, who pleaded guilty in 2008 to “three felony counts of conspiracy and mail fraud for his role in a scheme in which he and four others allegedly bilked the state out of $4.2 million during the construction of the Bernalillo County Metropolitan Courthouse,” and is in the midst of serving a 67-month sentence.

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Why Don’t Politicians Leverage Games More?

July 1, 2010 -

An article on The Game Reviews.com notes that while videogames have emerged into a “significant cultural force,” only a handful of games have been made in order to communicate political ideas.

Author Andy Johnson outlines a few games that attempted such incorporation, like America’s Army, Full Spectrum Warrior and religious games like Left Behind: Eternal Forces and The Bible Game, before describing a few games that feature a pure political bent, like the Bushgame and September 12th.

While politicians have been quick to latch on to social media tools to spread their message, Johnson says that it would be difficult for elected officials to latch on to videogames because their interactive nature breeds “unpredictability.” He continued:

Online Game Calls Attention to Blocked Movements in Gaza

June 23, 2010 -

Gisha, an Israeli not-for-profit organization with a goal of protecting the freedom Palestinians to move freely around Gaza and the West Bank, has created an online game designed to call attention to the impact restrictions of movement are having on commerce and families in the area.

SafePassage offers three different scenarios to play:  a Gaza businessman looking to sell his wares in the West Bank; a young Gaza woman who wants to study in the West Bank or the married father of a seven-year old who used to live in the West bank, but was moved to Gaza by Israeli authorities and forced to leave his family behind.

Create Your Own Candidate in UK Election Sim

April 29, 2010 -

In light of the looming UK elections, Theory Spark has introduced its latest election simulator, Prime Minister Forever – UK 2010.

The downloadable PC game allows users to play as one of 16 parties, including Labour, Conservative, Lib-Dem, Green, UKIP, BNP, SNP, Plaid Cymru, UUP, DUP, Sinn Fein, SDLP, Alliance, Respect, Veritas, or Independent, and also includes a Candidate Editor that lets players create their own detailed entrant.

Prime Minister Forever – UK 2010 supports two to sixteen players and promises, “realistic electorate modeling techniques and the ability to plan complex strategies.”

Priced at £14.95 ($19.95), the game is also available at a discount for those who already own Prime Minister Forever - UK 2005.

What caused the Banking Collapse? Giant Alien Maggots of Course

February 4, 2010 -

A recently released iPhone/iPod Touch game pins the U.S. recession on the collapse of a bank that was infiltrated by giant maggots from outer space.

The Bank, from Primus Productions, drops players into the game after the collapse of the one bank that started the whole economic downturn (Sun Valley Bank in Bells, Montana) and allows them to mow down said maggots while piloting a flying car named “Sally” that is outfitted with a variety of weapons.

A self-described $18.00 marketing budget resulted in the embedded video at left and a second that can be viewed at YouTube.

A video featuring game play footage can be seen here.

The Bank is available for $2.99 from the iTunes Store and is rated 12+.

3 comments

Try Your Hand at Being an MP for a Week

January 12, 2010 -

Tired of UK politicians? Think you could do a better job? An online game from the UK government allows players to take on the role of a backbench MP for a week.

The game, which is very well produced, begins by allowing players to choose a level of play, a party affiliation, an area of the UK to represent and a focus (local issues, world issues or money & finance). No focus on the games industry though sorry.

The game is aimed at 11-14 year olds and features eight types of activities—votes, questions, debates, speech editing, press conferences, messages and meetings. Players are charged with surviving the week without party or voter support dropping too low.

The game drew the support of the Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association (ELSPA). ELSPA Director General Mike Rawlinson said about the game, “We are pleased to see Parliament embracing videogames in this way and finally appreciating the relevance of videogames in many areas of work and play.“

6 comments

Play Where's the Naughty Governor?

July 9, 2009 -

New from Addicting Games is the tongue-in-cheek puzzler Where's the Naughty Governor?

The super-easy Where's Waldo? clone challenges player to find visual clues related to the cases of philandering guvs and ex-guvs like South Carolina's Mark Sanford, New York's Eliot Spitzer and New Jersey's Jim McGreevey. Philandering would-be president John Edwards is tossed in for good measure. Sarah Palin  made the cut too, but for quitting her post rather than for extra-curricular marital activities.

As an added bonus (and this lackluster game needs all the help it can get), the Los Angeles Times has an interesting article on the creative process behind Where's the Naughty Governor?:

The quintet [of game designers] quickly work their way through 15 politicians with slippery zippers before settling on five. Sen. Ensign of Nevada is labeled "kinda boring" and tossed out because he promptly admitted his infidelity; mayors Villaraigosa [of Los Angeles] and Newsom [of San Francisco] don't have big enough national profiles; former Sen. Larry E. Craig of Idaho is set aside because his arrest for allegedly soliciting sex in an airport bathroom by tapping his foot could... deserve its own game.

Those making the cut: Sanford, Spitzer, McGreevey and Edwards [Palin was apparently added later]. Dave Williams, senior VP of Nickelodeon's games group, even reaches into the past for one more addition.

"Could we end on Bill Clinton? He's the big boss!" [a designer] says with a laugh, using the video-game term for a final and most difficult opponent.

12 comments

Teen Gamer Plays, Practices Politics

July 8, 2009 -

Tyler Hudgins plays politically-themed games like The Political Machine 2008 and Oval Office on his PC and dreams of a career in real - not simulated - politics.

Oh, and the Arizona teen just graduated from high school.

The East Valley Tribune reports that Tyler (left) is, for now, dedicated to local politics but has aspirations that extend beyond his home town:

Hudgins spends more time in the council chambers than just about anyone who isn't on the council or the town payroll. He hopes to be a councilman himself someday, a first step to what he says will be a long and illustrious political career...

 

But, for now, he's reading "How to Get Elected to Local Office" during breaks from his job at Liberty Market. He said it's a long road to the White House, and that's how it should be.

"I'm stopping to study the issues that will come into play in the future," he said. "I feel like I'm going about this the right way, by starting at the grass roots."

8 comments

Abraham Lincoln: The Video Game

June 19, 2009 -

Having finished Team of Rivals, a study of Abraham Lincoln's politicial genius, blogger Nate Janewit of Tech Industry Guerilla notes with despair that a Spielberg/Peter Jackson film adaptation may be in the works.

Expecting that the movie won't do justice to historian Doris Kearns Goodwin's Pulitzer Prize-winning book, Janewit, a program manager in Microsoft's Bing team, goes on to speculate about what a subsequent video game version of Team of Rivals might be like:

[CUE DEEP-VOICED ANNOUNCER AND IMAGES OF EXPLOSIONS]

ANNOUNCER: From the studios that brought you The Sims and Madden 2009 comes…LINCOLN!

[IMAGE OF LINCOLN SITTING IN A CHAIR THINKING]

ANNOUNCER: Balance the conservative and radical elements of your party…

[IMAGE OF LINCOLN WITH HAND IN THE AIR SURROUNDED BY CROWDS]

ANNOUNCER: Placate the masses with your oratorical skill…

[IMAGE OF SALMON CHASE, PLOTTING AGAINST YOU AS SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY]

ANNOUNCER: Navigate the dangerous waters of political intrigue within your own Cabinet!

I can already picture the crowds of enthusiastic gamers lining up or preordering weeks in advance. For some reason, real history just isn’t as interesting as video games.

8 comments

In Lebanon, First Use of Games As an Election Campaign Tool

June 15, 2009 -

Here at GamePolitics we lay no claim to understanding the complexities of Lebanese politics.

But we do note that Lebanon-based WixelStudios has launched what it says is the first use of games for a political campaign in the troubled nation. From the company's website:

For the first time in Lebanon, games are used as an election propaganda! ...

Wixel Studios produced an interactive animated documentary for the Liberty Front... in addition to the documentaries you will find four games accompanying to the stories.

The four browser-based mini-games, which are nicely varied in presentation, involve themes in which the player does battle with Syrian forces. Based on its Wikipedia entry, Lebanon's dealings with Syria is a prime concern of the Liberty Front.

Check out the games here.

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MaskedPixelanteOK, so my brief research looking at GameFAQs forums (protip, don't do that if you wish to keep your sanity intact.), the 3DS doesn't have the power to run anything more powerful than the NES/GBC/GG AND run the 3DS system in the background.07/28/2014 - 11:01am
ZenMatthew, the 3DS already has GBA games in the form of the ambassador tittles. And I an just as curious about them not releasing them on there like they did the NES ones. I do like them on the Wii U as well, but seems weird. And where are the N64 games?07/28/2014 - 10:40am
james_fudgeNo. They already cut the price. Unless they release a new version that has a higher price point.07/28/2014 - 10:19am
E. Zachary KnightMatthew, It most likely is. The question is whether Nintendo wants to do it.07/28/2014 - 10:12am
Matthew WilsonI am sure the 3ds im more then powerful enough to emulate a GBA game.07/28/2014 - 9:54am
Sleaker@IanC - while the processor is effectively the same or very similar, the issue is how they setup the peripheral hardware. It would probably require creating some kind of emulation for the 3DS to handle interfacing with the audio and input methods for GBA07/28/2014 - 9:30am
Sleaker@EZK - hmmm, that makes sense. I could have sworn I had played GB/GBC games on it too though (emud of course)07/28/2014 - 9:23am
E. Zachary KnightSleaker, the DS has a built in GBA chipset in the system. That is why it played GBA games. The GBA had a seperate chipset for GB and GBColor games. The DS did not have that GB/GBC chipset and that is why the DS could not play GB and GBC games.07/28/2014 - 7:25am
IanCI dont think Nintendo ever gave reason why GBA games a reason why GBA games aren't on the 3DS eshop. The 3DS uses chips that are backwards compatable with the GBA ob GBA processor, after all.07/28/2014 - 6:46am
Sleakerhmmm that's odd I could play GBA games natively in my original DS.07/28/2014 - 1:39am
Matthew Wilsonbasically "we do not want to put these games on a system more then 10 people own" just joking07/27/2014 - 8:13pm
MaskedPixelanteSomething, something, the 3DS can't properly emulate GBA games and it was a massive struggle to get the ambassador games running properly.07/27/2014 - 8:06pm
Andrew EisenIdeally, you'd be able to play such games on either platform but until that time, I think Nintendo's using the exclusivity in an attempt to further drive Wii U sales.07/27/2014 - 7:21pm
Matthew WilsonI am kind of surprised games like battle network are not out on the 3ds.07/27/2014 - 7:01pm
Andrew EisenWell, Mega Man 1 - 4, X and X2 are already on there and the first Battle Network is due out July 31st.07/27/2014 - 6:16pm
MaskedPixelanteDid Capcom ever give us a timeline for when they planned on putting the Megaman stuff on Wii U?07/27/2014 - 2:23pm
MaskedPixelanteIf by "distance themselves from Google Plus" you mean "forcing Google Plus integration in everything", then yes, they are distancing themselves from Google Plus.07/26/2014 - 12:20pm
MechaTama31I wish they would distance G+ from the Play Store, so I could leave reviews and comments again.07/26/2014 - 11:03am
Matthew Wilson@pm I doubt it. Google seems to be distancing themselves from G+07/25/2014 - 9:31pm
Papa MidnightGoogle+ Integration is coming to Twitch!07/25/2014 - 8:41pm
 

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