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Game Inspired by Swine Flu

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 18 comments
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A flash-based game, influenced by the current swine flu pandemic, offers players a simulator/strategy-type taste of real-world outbreak management.

According to the World Health Organization, there have been nearly 178,000 reported cases of the swine flu, including 1,462 deaths worldwide, since it surfaced in April. With that said, it seems highly inappropriate to develop a game inspired by the current pandemic. However, unlike Super Columbine Massacre RPG, this particular flash-based game--called The Great Flu--seems intent on raising awareness.

"It is actually what is happening now, what is happening in the real world," said Albert Osterhaus, head of virology at the Erasmus Medical Center.

The basis of the game challenges players to control a new pandemic, to understand just how difficult the task is in the real world. Taking the reigns of the fictional World Pandemic Control, players first pick a flu strain and then establish surveillance systems, and stockpile vaccines and antivirals with a limited budget; players must also keep an eye on schools and airports. A simulator at heart, The Great Flu forces players into making decisions that affect the entire world.

To keep a tab on the pandemic, the game keeps a running tally of infected individuals displayed over the player's budget. According to Yahoo, various messages from worldwide governments pop up to inform the player of local problems and effects related to the WPC's actions (or lack thereof). Newspapers also keep the player informed, reporting on the global responses to the pandemic, flu-related deaths, and possible riots.

The WHO said that it was not familiar with the game.

Display 18 Comments.
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  • 0 Hide
    ubernoobie , August 17, 2009 11:19 PM
    Lol I failed on the broadway lvl
  • 2 Hide
    megamanx00 , August 17, 2009 11:55 PM
    A little morbid, and scary. Still, it helps people realize just how serious the problem can be and how lucky we are it hasn't been, yet.
  • 3 Hide
    dzeric , August 18, 2009 12:21 AM
    oldish news, look up "pandemic 2"
  • 0 Hide
    cough-fee , August 18, 2009 12:26 AM
    The game industry must be running out of ideas, just like the movie industry.
  • 4 Hide
    anonymousdude , August 18, 2009 12:39 AM
    dzericoldish news, look up "pandemic 2"


    Except the goal in Pandemic 2 is to kill everyone.
  • 1 Hide
    afrobacon , August 18, 2009 12:56 AM
    Set up some research, walk away for a few minutes, game won. Where's the challenge?
  • 2 Hide
    rpmrush , August 18, 2009 1:20 AM
    Quote:
    Except the goal in Pandemic 2 is to kill everyone.
    afrobacon


    Hilarious. Anyone played phage wars? It's more on the micro scale than macro like Pandemic.
  • 2 Hide
    mdillenbeck , August 18, 2009 2:21 AM
    Guess I'm a sick puppy - cause I prefer to play the role of the virus (and rip my hair out when Madagascar closes its port) than try to save the human race...
  • 2 Hide
    Grims , August 18, 2009 12:19 PM
    So.. what is the deal with this flu anyway? It has only infected a 170 thousand people with a 1% kill rate...who cares.. (besides that 1% I guess.)
  • 7 Hide
    randomizer , August 18, 2009 12:27 PM
    Grims(besides that 1% I guess.)

    They don't care either. They're dead.
  • 0 Hide
    shabaa , August 18, 2009 12:32 PM
    Now we just need a game that simulates our current economic state and the challenge would be find the best way to recover from it!
  • 1 Hide
    Grims , August 18, 2009 2:12 PM
    randomizerThey don't care either. They're dead.



    Well, that is up for an entireley new debate on if there is life after death and if so, where they'd rather be :p 
  • 1 Hide
    r0x0r , August 18, 2009 2:31 PM
    Yawn. Wake me up when the next big thing that's going to destroy humanity comes out.
  • 1 Hide
    coopchennick , August 18, 2009 3:09 PM
    "current" pandemic?

    Swine flu was soooooooo June 09
  • 1 Hide
    eyemaster , August 18, 2009 3:39 PM
    The swine flu is not even getting as much people killed as the common flu. It's a whole big nothing.
  • 0 Hide
    Kryan , August 18, 2009 7:06 PM
    shabaaNow we just need a game that simulates our current economic state and the challenge would be find the best way to recover from it!

    u wish. The USA is doomed. that game would be fail from the start. it's like trying to fill a gas tank with a huge gaping whole in it.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , August 19, 2009 1:17 AM
    The whole swing flu thing is WAY WAY WAY overhyped. Go look up death statistics for normal flu, then compare them to the tiny numbers for swine flu. Then get back to your life and dont worry about it.
  • 0 Hide
    jecht , August 19, 2009 6:55 PM
    sd9f8j2jfsjfskj2ij2The whole swing flu thing is WAY WAY WAY overhyped. Go look up death statistics for normal flu, then compare them to the tiny numbers for swine flu. Then get back to your life and dont worry about it.


    GrimsSo.. what is the deal with this flu anyway? It has only infected a 170 thousand people with a 1% kill rate...who cares.. (besides that 1% I guess.)


    The only thing that makes swine flu dangerous is that it's not well known and studied. Yes it has a low mortality rate, but some are worried that when this year's flu season comes around, swine flu will kick back up and infect more people while we are yet unprepared to deal with it. Personally, I don't think anything is really going to happen, but who knows.