October 14, 2004

Casa de Cambio

by Nick Montfort · , 5:10 pm

From the gaming house of Gonzalo Frasca comes the first political videogame for a non-U.S. presidential election, the election in Uruguay: “Cambiemos” (Let’s Change.)

Frasca's Cambiemos“Cambiemos” is a short, positive game that is both fun and seems to be good at expressing political principles: rebuilding is important, rebuilding takes work and cooperation, you have to be perceptive as you work, … even “you can fix your mistakes if you have time,” I think. It’s not a Boalian system for working out people’s political approaches through play – and unless Boal runs for office again, I don’t think any political campaign would pay for Gonzalo to whip up one of those – but it is something else that’s pretty interesting. I have to admit that like it better than the Dean game, which was more of a campaign volunteer’s manual than an interestingly-presented political statement. “Cambiemos” is easy to play, not being fast-paced at all. It also has good gameplay, and is aesthetically pleasing, making good use of black-and-white and color images.

The game was announced on Ludology.org and mentioned on Elastico (in Spanish). You don’t need to know Spanish to play the (self-explanatory) game. It has sound, so this is another one you should unmute for, here. Gonzalo’s announcement provides some political context.