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Thursday, October 27, 2005

A Force More Powerful

Wired has an article about Serb student-resistance group Otpor, which apparently used a video game to help train in non-violent resistance called A Force More Powerful:

Can a computer game teach players how to defeat real-world adversaries – dictators, military occupiers, and corrupt rulers – by bypassing laser rays and AK47s and choosing instead a non-military strategy and nonviolent weapons?

The International Center on Nonviolent Conflict, York Zimmerman Inc. and BreakAway Ltd. think so. For the past three years they have been collaborating on A Force More Powerful – The Game of Nonviolent Strategy, now set for release in early 2006. The game features ten scenarios inspired by recent history --conflicts against dictators, occupiers, colonizers, corrupt regimes, and struggles to secure political and human rights of ethnic and racial minorities and women – to demonstrate the effectiveness of nontraditional “weapons” such as strikes, boycotts, and mass protests.

While some politicians and lawyers are still convinced that video games are nothing more than a violent medium, it seems that others are a little more open minded. I find the idea of learning strategy a lot more believing than being becoming a brainwashed sniper, but that's just me.

For instance, the US Center on Public Diplomacy also announced a video game contest. Public Diplomacy is essentially the diplomacy of the masses ... what goes on in open forums and not closed doors.

Better living through video games. That wouldn't be a bad t-shirt.

1 comment:

Thomas said...

Otpor were badasses. I took a college class on rhetoric of protest and struggle just to write a paper about them. I can't wait to play this.