Our conception of modern interactive games has typically been as fantasy escapism. These are worlds we go into to get a break from our normal, everyday lives. In these microcosms we can be a wizard, a space marine or rule a simulated kingdom. But what if games took a different perspective? What if games were designed to engage you more deeply in your personal reality rather than just distracted you from it?
We’re at a point now where our ubiquitous technology can build an amazing situational awareness of each of us, if we let it. From that awareness we open the possibility of a new lens on our world, a whole new sense in a way. I’d like to talk about what going down this path might look like from my point of view.
Will Wright, widely acknowledged for creating the simulation video game genre, is the creator of SimCityTM and The Sims, and unveiled the highly anticipated SporeTM in September 2008. The Sims franchise has now sold over 100 Million units around the world. A true gaming industry legend as a result of his pioneering contributions to video games, Wright has been the recipient of several prestigious awards and honors. Rolling Stone named Will Wright “One of the 100 People who are Changing America,” in March 2009, placing him among artists, leaders, scientists, and policymakers who are “fighting every day to show us what is possible.” In 2008, Will received the first-ever Gamer God Award at the Spike Video Game Awards as a testament to his revolutionary work. In 2007, the British Academy of Film and Television Arts recognized an individual in the Video Game Industry for the first time when it named Wright a fellow. He also received the Producers Guild of America Vanguard Award that same year.
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