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Independent city building games finally take into account climate change


“Alternative reality allows us to push the pressures on societies to an extreme that wouldn’t really be possible in a realistic environment,” Frostbank Design Director Jacob Stokalski told WIRED. “And what happens to large groups of people under stress — that’s really the point.”

While Frostbank Volcanic background puts humanity off the hook, its latest expansion, last fall, It depicts efforts to prepare for disaster even as large sections of society deny its occurrence.

‘when taking last fallThe question was what would you sacrifice to secure a chance for the future,” says Stokalski. “But not for you; to other people. This sacrifice cannot only be yours – you can choose to sacrifice others, regardless of whether they like it.”

This script is a natural extension of Frostbank concepts. It’s not really like that Around Climate change, but questions about who and what should be sacrificed feel more at the heart of our attempts to deal with the problem than a discussion of where your city’s neat recycling center would look most attractive. It is a game of questions, not goals.

“Communities under pressure, and what the player will do to ensure they survive, is an interesting space where we can ask uncomfortable questions,” Stokalski says. “I find these questions interesting because it is the players who have to answer them by making actual choices. And we reap the consequences on our way to ‘beating’ the game.

“I think this is the unique ability of games: to ask questions that the player has to answer through action, rather than advertising. And I think this is useful, to learn more about ourselves, because only then can we try to be better.”

Stokalski and his colleagues at 11 Bit Studios are hard at work Frostpunk 2And that will see their alternate reality shift from coal to oil. Stokalski sees both resources as symbolic; Coal sustains fire in a frozen world, while oil is “a expressive source, a source of strength that has enabled huge human accomplishments, but is also bleak and sticky and pollutes everything it touches.” It’s not an explicit commentary on those times, but it’s also hard to separate the barrage of negative headlines — “the intensity of really bad news,” as Stokalski puts it — from game development.

if Frostbank Challenges players to think of humans in cities, Tera Nile It reminds them that there are places where humans should not be. The upcoming simulation challenges players to dismantle a city, transforming ancient urban wastelands into a reconstructed natural space. If you manage your resources properly, your last action will be to reuse your tools and leave, leaving no trace of humanity behind. It’s an implicit criticism of games like Civil Chamber 6 And Skyscrapers Where climate is just another bump in the path of endless human expansion.

tentatively scheduled for 2022, Tera Nile It is the latest title from independent South African studio Free Lives, which has previously commented on war and masculinity – in its own unique way – using the hyperbolic Proforce And Genital defecation. One of chief designer Sam Alfred’s goals is to show that city builders can still be fun and inviting even if you strip the building away.

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