Reviews: Educational Gaming-Darfur is Dying

Darfur is Dying, a interactive online game, gives players a glance of the life of Sudanese refugees in the Darfur region. In the game, players choose a refugee to fetch water in the desert and must avoid the Janjaweed militia or risk being captured and most likely killed. The user can choose one of eight different refugees to represent. Once the player has pumped the water into bucket, and ran back camp, they can water and harvest vegtable gardens, and build shelters.

Instead of just being a normal online game, Darfur is Dying gives commentary and information on the event. For example, if a refugee is captured, info appears on what normally happens to that person, based on their age and gender. Susana Ruiz, the game's creator, said that once more and more people are faded, on the screen where you choose your avatar, you begin to realize that they are dead.

Ruiz said it was hard to create a game that was intruiging enough to play, but educational enough so that it would raise awareness of the Darfur genocide. When asked about how playful the word "game" sounded, she said she would not mind changing it simulation or interactive experience.

"I think we're just starting to implement game technology and the game form and game metaphors to talk about serious issues," said Ruiz in an interview with NPR on May 5.

Play Darfur is Dying

Correction: As you might have noticed, Michele Norris was the reporter of the show, not the creator of the game. The game's creator is name Susana Ruiz, a USC grad student. Sorry for the problems this might have caused.


Blogger hedgehogman said...

wow a woman make a game?
thats sounds great, the idea is good too. Is it an option for the refugees to fight back or they just can do planting vegetable and build shelter?

5/07/2006 11:39 AM  
Blogger Noah Bulgaria said...

I don't think they can fight back. It would be hard to any way because it would be one un-armed refugee fighting a group of armed killers in a Jeep. It would be interesting if they could.

5/07/2006 1:16 PM  
Anonymous Rose said...

Thank you for not only posting the game but some history behind it. Nice to see you updating.

5/09/2006 5:57 PM  
Blogger Noah Bulgaria said...

No problemo!:-)

5/09/2006 6:45 PM  
Blogger Gaby de Wilde said...

I thought about this concept some time ago, I wasn't really the person to make it.

Is it an option for the refugees to fight back

maybe this is your answer.

Man, what shit people we all are :(

5/13/2006 12:00 PM  

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