Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I'd be willing to put up with "Igloo Tycoon" or "Moose Rider"

Here's an interesting article about the representation of the "global" in the supposedly globalized stories of some video games. They appear to be still plagued by stereotype and often, simply neglect of the complexity of the rest of the world.

1 comment:

nkakovitch said...

I personally am not much of a gamer and generally stick with my good ole' fashioned original nintendo and games like Duck Hunt or Doctor Mario. But I have to ask the question, is the purpose of video games to provide an accurate depiction of different cultures around the world? Much like the film industry, the primary goal of games is to entertain and to make a profit. Video game makers will create games that they know will entertain and sell. This person is expressing a demand in something else and that is the first step in getting other types of video games made. If there isn't a market for different types of games, however, they are unlikely to just spring up.

While many people do have stories to tell that could translate into video games, the market is not generally large enough for such country specific endeavors. The entire population of Australia is only 21 million people compared to the population of the state of California which is 35 million people. Not to say that games from different cultural backgrounds would not be able to entertain a wide range of people but then it is a matter of production. How would a North American video game maker know how to represent a Namibian perspective in a video game?