Playing 4 Keeps

[print] Ayiti Becomes Marie Claire's Hot Spot 

We've been looking forward to the first print magazine to cover our game, Ayiti: The Cost of Life. We just never knew it would be Marie Claire:

"Logged on at your desk," they ask, "but trying to avoid actually working? Five hot spots to surf this month."

    Addictive video game meets serious social message in "Ayiti: The Cost of Life." You're responsible for a Haitian family's destiny as they struggle to make a living and get educated. Sounds simple, but this survival game, supported by UNICEF, is tougher than it looks.

[blog] Spanish Blog Promotes Ayiti 

A recent entry by Mateo Zlater from a Spanish blog promoting Ayiti. He seems to have misunderstood who created and produced the game, but we're happy for the game to get the attention.

The original post in Spanish:

Misión salvarse de la pobreza Diseño

Publicado por Mateo Zlatar @ 01:38 AM

Cómo es vivir en la pobreza rural y tratar de sobrevivir manteniéndose saludable, sin deudas y salir adelante, con algún grado de educación? Este es el tema de este juego online "Ayti: The cost of life" creado por Unicef para su sitio Voices of Youth.

Este juego de roles está ambientado en Haiti rural, y enseña mucho de la realidad que ahí se vive. Unicef comisionó a Gamelab, uno de los buenos estudios de diseño de juegos de Nueva York para realizar la pieza, con Jonah Warren (de feedtank) a la cabeza del team de programación.

El juego te pone en el lugar de esta familia y créeme que es MUY dificil sacarlos adelante. Es una realidad virtual sumamente realista.

A ver como te va: PLAY

The English translation from Google follows:

[p4k] Teens Reiterate Issues That Concern Them 

In yesterday's program, we asked the teens what issues were on their minds when they joined the program last year, issues that we might build a game around. Here is a list, in no particular order, of what they had to say:

    Sexual Harassment
    Gang Violence
    Teen Depression
    Teen Prejudice
    Human Trafficking
    Police Brutality
    Baby Abuse
    Teen Pregnancy
    Human Rights
    Global Warming
    Drug Addiction
    Peer Pressure

[p4k] Ayiti Voted Best Simulation of 2006 

With 295 of the vote, Ayiti beat out four other contenders to be named by gameplayers on the site Jay Is Games as the best simulation game of 2006:

[blog] High school students blog about Ayiti in the classroom 

Innovative educator Brandt Schneider takes his students online and supports them to blog about. Recently, they played our game Ayiti.

Here is one of their numerous blogs about the experience, this one from Rachel:

[radio] Voice of America Covers Release of Ayiti: The Cost of Life 

The Voice of America covered the release of Ayiti: The Cost of Life in a recent radio piece.

powered by ODEO

You can read the transcript with photos on their site.

Below is the transcript as well.


TYPE=Radio Feature
BYLINE=Adam Phillips
DATELINE=Brooklyn, New York

[pfk] Creating Games About Poverty in Haiti 

The Games for Change site recently posed the question: Can video games designed by kids create the next generation of activists against poverty? And then follows that up by spotlighting Ayiti, the Cost of Life.

Read the article here

[blog] Ayiti vs. The Sims 

Pablo Moreno-Ger's blog about "why and how e-learning should be fun" offers an interesting comparison between the consumerism of The Sims and the impoverished conditions of Ayiti:

The follow post is reprinted from:

Ayiti vs. The Sims

I would like to post a brief reflection on the game Ayiti: The Cost of Life, which was recently brought by my attention by a friend.

Not an educational game, but rather a serious game with a specific message, Ayiti puts you in control of a family trying to survive in Haiti. The player assigns tasks to the members of the family (go to hospital to improve health, get some education at school, work at the family farm, get a job, etc.) and all these tasks have an impact on aspects such as "Happines", "Health" and "Education". You can see the progress of the three needs in bars that fill with care and empty with time.

Ignore the setting for a moment. Think of the actual gameplay based on giving slices of time to different activities in an attempt to keep a number of mood variables high. Yes, correct, we are talking of the best-selling PC game "The Sims".

[p4k] Peace and Justice in Today's Program 

Today, the Playing 4 Keeps youth leaders talking about peace and justice and then built billboards about it in Second Life.

When we brainstormed the word "peace" they listed the first things that came to mind:
love, workshops, friendship, cooperation, gang violence, race, kindness, Sunday dinner, calm, care hippies, safety, harmony, religion, discrimination, truce, Peace Boat, flowers, and unity

When we brainstormed the word "justice" they listed:
Justice League, Martin Luther King, revenge, liars, lawyers, Malcolm X, suing, batman, freedom, black panthers, freedom fighters, police, order, second life, courts, America, superheroes, security, leader, sheriff, police, Public Enemy, judges, law, a right, handcuffs, civil rights, jail, Brooklyn, Global Kids, and peace

We then learned how to build billboards above peace and justice - here is a photo with billboards from both P4K and the Machinima program:

[teem/p4k] GK as an Humanitarian Effort 

Global Kids is an innovative program which allows kids to learn about global issues while
enjoying themselves. These programs allow kids to express their opinions and contribute
to a growing humanitarian movement amongst people in the world.