In this issue: The video game, Plague Inc,  gives Stephen greater perspective on how fragile life is, and it sparks a discussion on games people play to wipe out life.


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  1. I loved playing the computer version of the game that Rob mentioned. It is called Pandemic 2, and Madagascar was ridiculously hard to infect (you didn’t get to pick your starting area). I think like Rodrigo does when it comes to this kind of game.

    Also, I think oh might be playing Small World wrong Rodrigo. You still get points for your declined race’s territories. Taking over them spreads out your active race without getting you extra coins.

    (Disclaimer: This was written on my iPhone, so I apologize for any autocorrect mess ups I may have missed.)

  2. I remember playing Pandemic 2 and feeling briefly the same feelings voiced by Stephen. Being a relatively simple game, I didn’t find the feeling particularly persistent. And having studied elements of epidemiology, I could see it from a more academic point of view. I think the original purpose of the game was to raise awareness about threats of disease and the impact of modern transportation on their spread. And I think it has “humanitarian merits”, even if just from that standpoint.

    I also agree with Matthew’s point with GTA. I really enjoyed the game for the zanier stress relief elements, but the dissonant story telling really felt bad. I didn’t want to complete some of the mission, but they were required to progress through the game. I think Saint’s Row does a much better take on the concept (though I haven’t played very far into the game yet).

  3. I’m interested in Plague Inc for the game mechanics. When I first saw Small World it didn’t seem strategic enough to play, but now that I’ve heard you all describe the game I am interested in playing it.

  4. Great show as always I will be checking out Pandemic sounds creepy but fun. In a simlar vien try Def-Con the strategic nuclear war simulator that uses the map graphics from War Games, never has a glowing coloured dot been so frightening.

    I liked Rodrigo’s point about villans not using their powers to full effect I’d love to see a story where The Trapster for example turns out to be a world class threat catching the heroes off guard.

    Actualy now I think about it I’m reminded of Mur Lafferty’s audio book Playing for Keeps where a
    group of low powered heroes are forced to take on their worlds version of the Justice League and use their powers in very creative ways.

    Right enought waffel from me I have Top Five to listen to.

    Right enough waffel from me I have an epsode

  5. I first became aware of how bad I felt about playing Plague Inc when I was eating out with my family and my little brother peeked over my shoulder. I told him that it wasn’t appropriate, and he said “it doesn’t look gory, is it an adult thing?”. At that point I realized it was stupid to try to win at something I felt uncomfortable doing.

    But I first came into sight of this a couple of months ago when I picked up Mage: The Awakening after hearing about it from Rodrigo on Critical Hit. I am a fan of WoD’s storytelling system, and I can get past a lot of the flavor in the core book… But as a 16-year-old Christian, reading through M:tA made me actively uncomfortable. I’m not even sure what it was, but I just dropped the book on my RPG shelf and havent so much as picked it up since.

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