Like a certain sexually transmitted disease, it seems that we’ll never be rid of shameless game tie-ins. Just a few weeks ago, The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct was met with some disdain from gamers and critics alike for being dead boring. And now, Star Trek the video game comes under fire. Despite the (best?) intentions of the developers, by the time the last credit has rolled, Star Trek does nothing to stem the tide of tired tie-ins. A terrible movie may be finished in an hour or two but game tie-ins often need to be endured for much longer. Several hours later and I’ve concluded the captain’s log on Star Trek, a video game that does not reach warp speed but sputters into mediocrity.
Like countless other gamers, I loved Ubisoft’s 2003 action-adventure title, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time. It’s been by far the most enjoyable in the series, although I have a soft spot for the 2008 outing “Prince of Persia” that was based around Zoroastrianism. A few people didn’t care for the cel-shaded graphics but I thought it was visually spectacular.
Anyways, it seems a game adaptation is in the works, and recently the trailer for Prince of Persia: Sands Of Time popped up on the Interwebs. Directed by Mike Newell (Four Weddings and a Funeral, Donnie Brasco, Love in the Time of Cholera), the film is to contain a mountain of CGI and occasionally star a few humans; those humans being Jake Gyllenhaal, Gemma Arterton, Ben Kingsley, and Alfred Molina. The plot is thus – a rogue prince who reluctantly joins forces with a mysterious princess to safeguard an ancient dagger that allow its possessor to rule the world. The villians seek to smite said heroes to gain the relic for themselves. It’s not rocket surgery folks.
In recent weeks we’ve come into contact with someone who knows someone who knows someone who has the swine flu. And now the pandemic has spread to the digital world. In an effort to raise more awareness, Dutch researchers and Ranj Serious Games have created The Great Flu, a video game where you play as a member for the fictitious World Pandemic Control Agency desperately trying to control the spread of a deadly virus.
“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, who designed “The Great Flu” game with colleagues.
Watch the intro video below.
Pick a strain (each colour has its own difficulty rating) and jump straight into the game. The display lets you see how many people are infected, keep tabs on your budget, navigate the world map (20 regions), and react to global events and messages. You have variety of tools available to fight an outbreak, but choosing the appropriate course isn’t necessarily the easiest. Your budget is limited too – I spent my money with reckless abandon, and that had, um, fatal consequences.