Video games are really more relevant than ever. I am reading a very interesting Engadget article with this title, during a break in an international conference I am attending in Bologna, about open badges. it’s a system to grant open recognition and assessment of every kind of learning, clearly and directly inspired by videogames achievements’ systems.
(Yes, I will talk about it in some next post).

The article focuses on some new, super-interesting titles presented in the indie videogames international festival Indiecade, whose European edition is scheduled in a few weeks from now. Since life is always having fun showing me that there’s no such thing as coincidences, last week I finally met the guys behind the game designers studio WeAreMuesli (big up everytime, guys!) and one of them was wearing the t-shirt of Indiecade, where by the way they are presenting their next title, Siheyu4n.

I already spoke of them in my previous post, talking about their storytelling game 20mesi to re-discover the history of Italian Resistance movement against Nazist and Fascist state, in the late 20 months of its existence in Northern Italy. During our lunch, we were discussing another title, by SantaRagione, which they collaborated in developing: Wheels of Aurelia.

In this new title, during a (short) road trip in 1978 on Aurelia highway, the old Roman way going all along italian Western coast from Rome to France, you get to know a lot of important and crucial facts of my Country modern (and darkest) history. Nobody would teach these things in any Italian schools, so… here you have it.

wheels of aurelia

I would add these titles to my list of videogames with a soul from my previous post, but there’s more. First of all, I forgot to mention the famous HumbleBundle initiative as a way to fund charities and support good causes through gaming, so I have to apologize and add it now.

Then, as I was reading about Indiecade, I discovered about Indiecade exhibition Gaming for Everyonewith a long list of known and unknown studios producing very interesting games in the way I like. Among them, a title quoted by Engadget article: We are Chicago.

screenshot1

The title is still unreleased, but from what I got, you… simply live your life as a young member of a family, dealing with the suburban area of South Chicago, apparently famous for being not that safe place to raise your kid.

You got this? Let me tell you again, slowly.
A city became somehow the character of a game.
And the game is addressing, interpretating, proposing a way to be part of that city.
A positive one, by the way.  This sounds to me like the product of a new generation of The sims developers, after a couple of days talking with me about my vision of possible educational impact of video games 😀

And last but not least, you get this.

1979 Revolution – Black Friday is a game about the Iran revolution, created by Navid Khonsari, Iranian himself and being a child during the facts, as he was living in Iran during the revolution and until the age of 11. I wrote that the game was created, but I was actually thinking about writing told by, as in a storytelling art piece.

Another generation would have written a book about it, indeed. A closer generation would have done a movie out of it. This generation is making it a videogame. Again, are you getting what is happening? I had to run to buy the game, I will try it soon.

Videogames are the form of art of today.
A specific art I would say:  the story-telling art.

And since story telling is part of the human essence and  of our most deep-rooted attitudes, videogames are our form of art. The more I study them, the more I guess we just started to scratch the surface of their potential.

 

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