Cowlix Wearing my mind on my sleeve

Thursday, July 04, 2002
But, it is just a game?

Civilization III: Digital Game-based Learning and Macrohistory Simulations: a review of Civ3 from someone who read the manual, and then some...

Civilization III's success amplifies certain trajectories of our mediascape, evident since SimCity (1988) inaugurated the "God game" genre (Prensky, 2000: 139). Sony's Playstation 2 has replaced The New Yorker as the arbiter of the Gen-X/Millennials psyche (Seabrook, 2000). Alain and Frederic Le Diberder touted videogames as "the 'tenth art'" (Poole, 2000: 25). Simulations are now regularly used in interactive education (Beer, 2000: 297-298) and business training (Prensky, 2000: 146), anticipating how corporations harness simulations to accelerate strategic innovation processes (Schrage, 1999). Hollywood films and DVD packaging feature twitch-speed aesthetics and non-linear narratives. Open-ended game-play provides a laboratory that enables participants to test the geopolitical shibboleths of the post-9/11 world--Samuel P. Huntington's "clash of civilizations" hypothesis, Robert Kaplan's fears of a "coming anarchy", the "Pacific Age" and "China Century" scenarios--and to surface their hidden presumptions. Simulations also help to distinguish between core operating policies versus espoused policies that guide organizational behaviour (Georgantzas and Acar, 1995: 234).

[via evacuate & flush]

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