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-Reality Series Part 3: Deep Impact

 




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Reality Series Part 3: Deep Impact

By Rumpy

The Reality series will be a 3 part series focusing on things that affect our lives, either directly or indirectly into our gaming habits, or things that just plain tick us off! In Part Three, we deal with Games that will make a deep impact in our near future.

It's 6:00 am and you're getting ready for work. The phone rings and you think it's your boss calling to tell you to hurry up and get a move on. After picking it up, you are shocked to discover that it is a recorded message from a character in the game you bought the other day telling you to boot up your computer and perform the following actions to obtain a game clue. You glance at the phone and then at your computer. You hang up the phone and then walk away, heading towards the computer in anticipation. Just then, the phone rings again. You think "It's gotta be my boss". You pretend you never heard it and continue to carry out the game-character's phone-relayed command.

It's Noon now and guess what? You're addicted and you're not at work. Shame on you! You have over 5 messages on your machine left by your boss and you couldn't care less. The messages seem to indicate that when you walk into the work the next day, you'll be fired. But on the bright side, you've progressed through your game.

The next day you get an email from another character in the game...

It may not be the epic movie about an earth shattering disaster, but either way, this game will make a deep impact on the future of games and how they will be played. That is, if it succeeds. Oh yeah, the name. EA's Majestic. Essentially, you will not come to the game, but the game will come to you using numerous methods of contact such as phone, email, pager, snail mail... you get the drift.

This can either be a big success or a huge backfire. That is, the concept can be scary for some people-like me. I for one like to have control of a game and not let it interrupt me in my daily processes. But some people want the game to taunt and challenge a player in a more active/realistic manner. But this can create social problems, such as losing your job, which can make a deep impact on your life. I don't see this as exaggerated either, but take it as you will.

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2nd Scenario. You're married now. You just got this really cool RPG and you're addicted to it, gathering lots of money while slashing enemies and monsters. One day, your bank phones you to tell you they've been monitoring the account and found that there was an enormous amount of money in it. "How?", you say. You make nothing of it for a few days. Then, a few days later, you buy a really expensive sword worth $10 000 and you're grinning mischievously, until you get a call from the bank again. They're telling you that your bank account is empty. Empty?? How can that be? Your bank account had lots of money in it only days before. Unfortunately, you didn't look at the bottom of the box before you bought this game where it said all currency movement in the game would reflect in actual real-life financial transactions. Oh boy, now you're in trouble! Your wife looks at you while you try to hide that face of despair. You tell her everything is ok. Oh oops, look out! Someone player-killer just nailed you and took your sword. You curse at the game and your wife wonders what drugs you're on. You tell your wife what happens and she runs out the door leaving you alone and with no money. You try to sell your car to get your money back.

This is just a scenario in an upcoming online RPG that will be coming out in the future. I am not making this up. As you can see, making a game where money is a big object and having it reflect in your real life finances, being able to add and withdraw from your bank account is something that is potentially dangerous adding to some possible law conflicts. Some places in the world might think this as a gambling game and will be banned. Furthermore, what will the impact be on a kid gambling with real world money not knowing the consequences? Either way, this game is turning off people like myself and I for one will not take a gamble like this when it's only supposed to be a game.

We must remember that games are games-end of story. If something in a game reflects in and changes real life, then that itself is NOT a game. It's a gamble. Remember, most people play games to escape reality. But if these game ideas go through-the games WILL be reality. If this is an attempt to immerse a player into a game, it's a poor one. If I want to be immersed completely, I'll wait til I can enter a Holodeck.

 

Until Next Week - Happy Gaming!

 

Hope you've enjoyed this 3 part series! If you've missed the first two parts. You can access both Part 1 and Part 2.

Question of the Week: Do you Agree with this article? Did you think I was too harsh on companies and registrations? Post your comments in the forum or email me. Unique comments will be used in an upcoming 'Letters to H2H' section!