Now hold on, before you say “WTF next?” there is actually a point to this latest online game – The Great Flu
The online game was created by Dutch researchers, with the aim of raising awareness on pandemics, and calls for players to combat a pandemic. See…..it could be a good thing.
“It is actually what is happening now, what is happening in the real world” says one of the Dutch researchers Albert Osterhaus, head of virology at the Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam, who along with colleagues created the game.
You can join the game at www.thegreatflu.com . You begin as the head of ‘World Pandemic Control’, by picking a flu strain, and working at preventing the spread around the world. You use all sort of measures to combat the spread such as surveillance, stockpiling antivirals, vaccines etc. You have a budget to work with which you have to keep tabs on as there are different levels of costs for the actions you choose. Amongst other things it allows you total control of cities by closing down public places and other more expensive means, so you will be faced with tough decisions.
The game has an awareness message and demonstrates the difficulties of combating such a pandemic. With this subject being in headlines around the world, combined with the growing popularity of sim games, I reckon this will probably challenge some of the huge online titles going around…….or not.