Thursday, April 8, 2010

Armchair Revolutionary Launches Social Gaming, Activism Site

Non-profit Armchair Revolutionary launched its new site combining social gaming and social activism with the hope of supporting science and technology projects. The site looks to crowd-source social activism by allowing participants to micro-finance social ventures from Play4Change Lab.

Play4Change Lab is billed as a group dedicated to developing commercial-grade video games that promise social change and incorporate new technologies/ideas like location-based software, embedded sensor networks, augmented reality, micro-transactions, virtual goods, and more.

The Hollywood Hill, a "social change organization for film, television, music, and gaming professionals," established the new group with USC's Game institute. Play4Change's advisory board includes notable game industry figures such as Robin Hunicke, Mark Deloura, Doug Church, Adam Sussman, and several others.

Users who've registered on the Armchair Revolutionary site can take quizzes, upload photos, decorate their profile pages, and donate to "world changing" technology research projects. Powered by Live Gamer's virtual economy platform, the site invites players to contribute Kredz, its virtual currency, to those projects (with donation amounts starting at $0.99).

The Armchair Revolutionary site will direct user-funding to Play4Change Lab, as well as post news and progress reports on the group's game development and try to increase public awareness of issues behind targeted social issues. The site will also fund documentary film projects developed by The Hollywood Hill.

The newly-launched site features three games so far including Make Waves, a game that incorporates "sensors, simulation, and augmented reality for a social activism tool that aids ocean sustainability," and Hack Your Body, which "equips users for the fast-approaching Genomics Revolution, supporting the Personal Genome Project, development of software for DNA analysis, and a commercial documentary film."

Armchair Revolutionary's third completed game currently available is End Of Darkness, which seeks to bring users together to "support three of the world's leading energy and micro-financing organizations (E+Co, Grameen Foundation, Selco India) in launching the first publicly financed international clean energy company selling and servicing low-cost solar power kits to the world's poor."
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