From making game players strategize how to wipe out humanity with a global virus outbreak, the online game Plague Inc. will now have a mode where you need to save the world from it.
This has been the response of UK-based game developer Ndemic Creations after they received ‘repeated’ feedback from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) to “make a game which let the player work to stop an outbreak.”
“Players will have to balance managing disease progression and boosting healthcare systems as well as controlling real-world actions such as triaging, quarantining, social distancing and closing of public services. We are developing this game mode with the help of experts from the World Health Organisation, the Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network and more,” the developer explained in a recent public statement.
The announcement to create a new game mode came alongside news that Ndemic Creations will donate $250,000 to be split between CEPI and WHO’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund.
“In this unprecedented pandemic with unprecedented needs, global cooperation is more important than ever,” said Elizabeth Cousens, President & CEO of the UN Foundation. “I am so thankful to Ndemic Creations’ contribution to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund. Their donation will support the World Health Organization’s lifesaving work.”
Fans of the Plague Inc. know fully well that the primary objective of players within the game is to induce apocalyptic virus outbreaks, not stop them. But in light of recent events, the developer saw the need to create a more positive scenario.
“Eight years ago, I never imagined the real world would come to resemble a game of Plague Inc. or that so many players would be using Plague Inc. to help them get through an actual pandemic,” said James Vaughan, creator of Plague Inc.
Early this year, the eight-year-old game gained renewed interest after the virus started to spread and fast becoming a global pandemic.
“Please remember that Plague Inc. is a game, not a scientific model and that the current Coronavirus outbreak is a very real situation which is impacting a huge number of people. We would always recommend that players get their information directly from local and global health authorities,” the developer said in a previous statement.
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