View Full Version : "Evoke" - so what do you think about it?

2010-Mar-04, 08:40 AM
So there's all this buzz about a world-bank funded "social MMO" called Evoke (http://urgentevoke.com).

It tries to search for solutions for Africa by way of making it a game with "missions" for geeks which give points for creative solutions to the world's problems.
They hope that some of the solutions will in the end help the world "fix" Africa, or so they say.

What do you think? Good idea? Dangerously ironic? A feel-good initiative with no real value? A way of cashing in on geeks? Patronizing to both geeks ("we can only mobilise them with comics and games") and real Africans? Or a way of embracing the creative potential in the online community?

I'm conflicted.

2010-Mar-04, 01:26 PM
A feel-good initiative with no real value?Bingo. A game can yield whatever in-game results the writers of the game decided to write into the game, but that doesn't reflect anything other than the game's writers' decisions & assertions. Reality will still work the way it already does.

2010-Mar-04, 04:20 PM
But the point is that the game plays out in real life, the person documents their actions and gets certified for them once that has been transmitted back to the game. (Don't ask me how much personnel they have for checking such things if they want thousands of people to do this...)

It is made by a well-known game designer with a good track record, and funded by the world bank. So apart from the irony of the world bank looking to geeks to fix things they should by all means be responsible for, the general basis isn't so bad.

But it still makes me deeply suspicious. Why?

2010-Mar-04, 04:30 PM
After a quick browse through the Evoke website, it just seems like a large interactive advertisement for various special interest groups masked in the guise of an online game with graphic novel visuals. *Shrug* maybe I'm just a pessimist.

2010-Mar-04, 05:18 PM
Maybe we're all jaded, cynical pessimists with no interest in making the world a better place...
...I have an interest in that. I just don't like that idea though without knowing more about their ulterior goals.

2010-Mar-04, 06:16 PM
Most problems in the world are caused by the way people think (i.e. prejudice, discrimination, greed, etc) , not what they do. A video game isn't going to affect those people in power that are causing the problem. You can create an initiative to deliver 300 tonnes of grain and medical supplied to some where but you can't stop the militant guerrillas from coming in and grabbing it all, or the government stating that the food delivered to the refugees is needed to feed the local people instead.

2010-Mar-08, 12:06 PM
"Suspicious" as in worldbank possibly using this as a way to mine or skim creative solutions to problems? How would they know whether it's a good solution or not unless they're already employing traditional methods?