If we leave everything to the experts, we might never make progress. A new alternate reality game called World Without Oil has been developed to stimulate ideas on an oil-free future by engaging online gamers.
The premise of World Without Oil was simple and provocative: What if an oil crisis started on April 30, 2007 - what would happen? How would the lives of ordinary people change? Players were invited to imagine how their lives and communities would be different and how they would cope if the world’s oil suddenly dried up. The “plot” unfolded dynamically. First, the players read the “official news” and what other players were saying. Then, using a combination of blog posts, videos, images and even voice mails, they told their own stories of the challenges they were facing. As the crisis continued, players updated their stories with further thoughts, reactions and solutions.
The game ended after 32 days, having engaged thousands of players around world and woven the fabric of 1,500 stories into what [game designer] Ken [Eklund] describes as “living breathing mega narrative that presented some eerily plausible scenarios, complete with practical courses of action to help prevent such an event from actually happening.”