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Mundane simulation
March 24, 2013 7:34 AM   Subscribe

German Truck Simulator. Bus Driver. U-Boat Simulator. Ski Region Simulator. London Underground Simulator. Street Cleaning Simulator. Who's buying all these niche simulation games, anyway? We found out
posted by Pope Guilty (59 comments total) 36 users marked this as a favorite

 
I'm just throwing in that I've been playing Euro Truck Simulator 2. I've put more hours in on that than any other game I've played in the last few years, and I've played a bunch of them, including the big name releases. It's one of the most enjoyable, relaxing games I've ever played.

I would have laughed at the idea of a semi simulator a few weeks ago, but this is the real deal. It's unbelievable how much attention to detail was included. Great graphics, fun game mechanics, and a really well done economy for setting up your own business. And I don't even like business simulators!

One of my favorite things is setting the rain possibility to high, and then taking a road trip in the evening (in-game) while streaming internet radio from real radio stations all over Europe (it's built into the game). Seriously relaxing, and it takes me back to the road trips I used to take in my younger years. The way they do everything, including the lighting that reflects off the inside of the vehicle when you pass under the highway lights, is just perfect.
posted by SpacemanStix at 7:42 AM on March 24, 2013 [22 favorites]


They should take all these games and tie them together into a big open world mmorpg. Just a single living, breathing city, where all the trash trucks, subway trains and street sweepers are driven by real people.
posted by empath at 7:43 AM on March 24, 2013 [35 favorites]


Sometimes when I'm busy but need a MeFi fix I play a quick MetaFilter Simulator game, which is just MeFi in all Lorem ipsum. I favorite a few posts, flag a comment or two, and roll my eyes at a MeTa then go back to work.

For fellow players, my MeFiSim user name is gravida urna.
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 7:49 AM on March 24, 2013 [26 favorites]


I love these games! I had no idea so many of them existed. Anyone who would feel inclined to mock them can piss off. I've not had a chance to play any of them but I'm going to give one of the trucking ones a try. Also, I'd love to get my hands on Farming Simulator. The only game I own that is remotely like a simulator is Operation Flashpoint (the ultimate sandbox military sim). It's 10 years old but still gives me hours and hours of enjoyment.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 7:55 AM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Nigh unto twenty years ago, I recall a friend had a run-an-airline sim game on whatever console was in vogue at the time -- maybe Super Nintendo. You would set up new hubs, set prices for fares, and so forth. Does anyone recall this?
posted by ricochet biscuit at 8:08 AM on March 24, 2013


Over on Gamers With Jobs, a bunch of people seem very impressed with ETS. It went on sale this weekend for $20, so I picked it up. I did the tutorial mission; it seems quite polished, but I haven't yet been hooked. The sound and music are really very good, surprisingly so. But I don't yet have an opinion on actual gameplay.
posted by Malor at 8:09 AM on March 24, 2013


If you need to be sold on games like Euro Truck Simulator 2, there's an incredibly hilarious video Giant Bomb put out on the game recently.
posted by flatluigi at 8:09 AM on March 24, 2013 [9 favorites]


This is going to end up all Ender's Game. Some day soon these software studios are going to start switching their best-performing users to secretly teleoperating actual trucks and farming equipment, with the studio picking up the profit and the unwitting teleoperator paying for the privilege.
posted by Pyry at 8:14 AM on March 24, 2013 [12 favorites]


ricochet biscuit: "Nigh unto twenty years ago, I recall a friend had a run-an-airline sim game on whatever console was in vogue at the time -- maybe Super Nintendo. You would set up new hubs, set prices for fares, and so forth. Does anyone recall this?"

Sounds like Aerobiz, which I desperately wanted to play at the time and later played via emulator only to realize I am not very good at managing a small airline in the 60s.
posted by Copronymus at 8:15 AM on March 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


Obligatory

(From obligatory)
posted by dirigibleman at 8:15 AM on March 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


Nigh unto twenty years ago, I recall a friend had a run-an-airline sim game on whatever console was in vogue at the time -- maybe Super Nintendo. You would set up new hubs, set prices for fares, and so forth. Does anyone recall this?
posted by ricochet biscuit at 8:08 AM on March 24 [+] [!]

AEROBIZ! Love that game.
posted by gc at 8:16 AM on March 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


Skrillex...
posted by Windopaene at 8:17 AM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Before I read the article, I thought 'My dad would buy these games'... and indeed. I also wish I knew about the U-boat simulator before his birthday a week ago.
posted by Fig at 8:19 AM on March 24, 2013


That article was defective. The whole pitch is that this is a niche demographic: 8-12 year olds. Eastern Europeans. And then in the last few tiny paragraphs ... "number one best-selling game" "Number one PC game in France and Germany" "Steam ... number one spot."
posted by user92371 at 8:24 AM on March 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


I always liked the "cruising' aspect of Flight Sim and some railroad sims... just letting the scenery unfold... maybe making the required station stops... or not.

I don't personally go in for the operational realism; there's not much there when you're just using a keyboard and a mouse, so I usually just select the simplest control options. I'll have to give this Truck Sim a try, i think.

Anyone using a sailing simulator? Is there a really good one out there?
posted by Artful Codger at 8:24 AM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


This is going to end up all Ender's Game. Some day soon these software studios are going to start switching their best-performing users to secretly teleoperating actual trucks and farming equipment, with the studio picking up the profit and the unwitting teleoperator paying for the privilege.

I always figured this is what people would do all day once automation became cheaper in all things.
posted by The Whelk at 8:26 AM on March 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


Came here to post the links that dirigibleman posted, just wanted mention a NSFW tag should be to those links. Also, train simulator (NSFW) is fantastic; I cannot recommend it strongly enough. (The video, not the game. I've never played it.)
posted by Brian Puccio at 8:27 AM on March 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


I don't understand why your basic Flight Simulator (yay, x-plane!) gets a pass as somehow being 'respectable' while these types of things are dismissed as goofy.
posted by mazola at 8:30 AM on March 24, 2013 [5 favorites]


Makes sense. My favorite part of the game Shenmue was when you get a job as a forklift operator and spend a week rearranging boxes. Like box tetris!
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 8:31 AM on March 24, 2013


I've been looking at the videos from Euro Truck Simulator 2 and WOW it is pretty - something about the long-distance realistic "open world" driving appeals to me. In Operation Flashpoint, I used to set up races from the southern tip of Everon to the far north - the whole drive only took about 15 minutes, but it FELT like I'd covered a long distance.

I'd pay top dollar for a game with the realistic long-distance driving of ETS2, but with racing, and conventional cars. You'd drive from one point of Europe to another in one go, in regular traffic, and each race would take hours.

Throw in some crazy AI driver behavior ala Driving in Russia and I imagine the Russia races could be pretty entertaining...

The ultimate version of this would be one continuous race that takes like 50 hours of in-game driving to complete. You'd go from Lisbon to Moscow, or London to Istanbul, etc. and see all sorts of scenery. Obviously you'd have save games so you could get on with your real-world life, but in-game you'd have to contend with navigation, fatigue, hunger, bathroom breaks, car breaking down, etc. It'd be an open-world roguelike rally racer.

Any game out there like that?
posted by pravit at 8:37 AM on March 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


Yeah, Aerobiz and it's upgrade, Aerobiz Supersonic is one of my old favorites. It was on SNES and Genny. I'd love to set up a game where we play by taking turns then dropboxing the ROM or something.
posted by laconic skeuomorph at 8:42 AM on March 24, 2013


A few months ago I bought a license to Kerbal Space Program which is a kind of spacecraft game with realistic physics and goofy aliens. Over the last few months the detail of the in-game physics simulation has increased to the point that you apparently need a background in NASA mission lingo and orbital thrust maneuvering to get anywhere interesting. At this point the game has gone well past my ability to understand but it's a real pleasure to watch a "pro" play it.

A game is just a chance for a player to use and practice their own skills to succeed at some goal, whether explicit or implicit. I've found these games with implicit goals (like Minecraft) to be the most interesting ones of late.

I'm almost mid-30s so there we go: I am almost a target market.
posted by sixohsix at 8:46 AM on March 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


They should take all these games and tie them together into a big open world mmorpg. Just a single living, breathing city, where all the trash trucks, subway trains and street sweepers are driven by real people.

Oh, how I'd want to play Septic Avenger in that city.

This is going to end up all Ender's Game.

We'll know they've started doing this when the landing areas of naturally-occuring jumps are three-deep in semis.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:53 AM on March 24, 2013 [5 favorites]


Before I read the article, I thought 'My dad would buy these games'

IIRC Rock Paper Shotgun refers to these as "Dad games".
posted by Pope Guilty at 8:54 AM on March 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


For anyone who likes Sim City minus all the bullshit, there's Cities XL. Been playing the hell out of this one.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 9:04 AM on March 24, 2013 [6 favorites]


KevinSkomsvold:
For anyone who likes Sim City minus all the bullshit, there's Cities XL. Been playing the hell out of this one.
Seconded.
posted by Brian Puccio at 9:08 AM on March 24, 2013


I used to love playing "Silent Service" in patrol mode. Then, after eliminating an enemy threat, I'd just cruise around an island or whatever. In short, I guess I'm in the target market for this sort of thing (and lets Kickstart a Silent Service remake).
posted by drezdn at 9:09 AM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


The ultimate version of this would be one continuous race that takes like 50 hours of in-game driving to complete.

Any game out there like that?


Desert Bus manages to be almost, but not quite, unlike the game you're thinking of.
posted by Pyrogenesis at 9:53 AM on March 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


When my wife found out that "Street Sweeper" simulation existed, she wanted to buy it for her dad -- all his life he had said he loved street sweepers, and wanted to drive one sometime. Sadly, we couldn't find a Mac version for him. :'( Maybe someday...

(and seconding Silent Service, drezdn -- I play the NES version whenever I'm bored; roam around, surface to charge batteries, repeat)
posted by AzraelBrown at 9:54 AM on March 24, 2013


I would totally get a Walt Disney World Monorail Simulator, just for the memories. Forget fire trucks, trains, construction equipment... those are what I wanted to drive when I was 9 years old.
posted by Foosnark at 9:57 AM on March 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


in GTA IV, I often just take taxis from place to place all around he city, watching the scenery and listening to the radio. it feels just like being in NYC.
posted by bruceo at 10:14 AM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Before I read the article, I thought 'My dad would buy these games'... and indeed. I also wish I knew about the U-boat simulator before his birthday a week ago.

Luckily, I now know about them before my dad's birthday.

The only question is, do we go for just submarines or all boats?
posted by Katemonkey at 10:25 AM on March 24, 2013


"Perhaps the fact that our games may be ridiculed in the UK but loved in Eastern Europe is down to the fact that a trucker may be considered a low-prestige job in the UK (and a target of Jeremy Clarkson [Top Gear presenter] jokes)," he reasons.

The further East you go, he notes, "the more this job smells of adventure and distant horizons - plus it's perhaps paying better than average in those countries."


So - has there been a garbage collection sim? That would be... interesting. Maybe Crazy Taxi + Sim Train + ? You could have incinerators and landfills and you could even evolve from like burning barrels and small town garbage dumps to more efficient/city style garbage management. Waste sorting - recyclables - etc...

On preview - that "city wide" job-sim MMO that Empath proposes would be... interesting. Instead of a class, you'd have jobs. It could be like Sims where you have different traits that would tune you towards a different job (just like stats in an RPG). You could have Unions and Management and other facets of work. The whole social system around that, and add in Consumerism as the motivation.

To be realistic you need a sweat shop expansion, and a Tea Party Nationalist/Anti-Foreign Labor class, and Liberal NPR radio hosts that make simulated programs about sweatshops, and protests against them, and Giant Shipping Container ships and... and... and...

It could be like Dwarf Fortress only with 3D graphics, and instead of fantasy it's just the boring world economy. Or Eve Online with less space and more power plays in corporate board rooms. Instead of Guilds you'd have multinational corporations with different units that do different jobs and can specialize in a few areas.

OK, now someone go kickstart that.
posted by symbioid at 10:54 AM on March 24, 2013


I've been meaning to try a train simulator for some time now. Is RailWorks still the top of the crop?
posted by schmod at 10:56 AM on March 24, 2013


London Underground Simulator? Tell me more!
posted by scalefree at 11:01 AM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


We just had another thread about this a couple of weeks ago but I'm glad to see it come up again, because I was (and am) still curious about what motivates certain companies to develop these simulators, particularly why the studios are mostly in Germany or Eastern Europe. The whole classism / "glamor" aspect is something I hadn't considered, but it makes sense. Being a soldier is far more "cool" than being a peasant farmer or a truck driver.

I find it no more or less worthy of ridicule to drive a simulated truck than to shoot a simulated gun or to match geometric shapes on a grid. It's one thing to laugh at the production values of euro-sims, but that's ..not as much of an issue anymore. But I'm outside their target demographic (31 with zero experience in farming, flying, logging, or truck/train driving) so maybe I'm just creepy for enjoying something aimed at kids.

Katemonkey: Silent Hunter 3 or 4 would be my recommendation unless Dad is already a seasoned sim enthusiast. The Ship Sim series is fun, but far rougher around the edges, and arguably less engaging. Silent Hunter lets you roam around around all you want, but there are lots of combat scenarios if you want some torpedo practice (for which you can optionally calculate your trajectories and do all the measurements by hand, including identifying ships by sight and looking them up in your handy measurement book to see where to aim at). Dive! Dive!
posted by jake at 11:04 AM on March 24, 2013


They should take all these games and tie them together into a big open world mmorpg. Just a single living, breathing city, where all the trash trucks, subway trains and street sweepers are driven by real people.

Years ago, maybe it was flight simulator '98 or something, I noticed an interesting thing. When playing multi-player online, a whole sub-simulation had evolved where there were people who didn't fly planes at all. They assumed jobs as air traffic control and then cooperated via voice comms to form tower, ground, arrival, departure, ARTCC, etc. and provide realistic service to the people that were flying the planes. It was neat.
posted by ctmf at 11:16 AM on March 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


Do any of the submarine simulators teach you how to solve target range/course/speed from bearing/sound frequency? In a real sub, driving your ship to get the data you need to do that as fast as possible while still avoiding counter-detection and maintaining the advantageous position is the fun part.

When they first started making these games, I tried a couple, but that part of it was completely lacking - you were mostly just meant to drive in the general direction of where you heard the bad guy and shoot it out. Even if you knew how to do it, the data you needed either wasn't there, or worse, wasn't realistic (since you weren't supposed to be actually paying attention to it that closely.)

The official "how to do this" in real life is classified military stuff, of course. Maybe we would get some new innovative real-life tactics if we just let a simulator loose on all the smart people on the internet without a tutorial, and just watched to see what happens then.
posted by ctmf at 11:28 AM on March 24, 2013 [6 favorites]


Several years ago I visited a 6 degree of freedom locomotive driver training simulator. A complete driver's cab was rebuilt onto a stewart platform (at least I am pretty sure it was a stewart platform). All instruments in the cab performed as on a real locomotive (I remember the audible hiss of the air brakes releasing).

Video projection on the front windows showed miles and miles of reprogrammed real track in all manner of weather conditions (we switched from blinding sun to rain complete with windshield wipers and finally struggled to see through thick fog and a snowstorm in which individual snowflakes flew towards us and covered the landscape). The trainers let us drive for a while and then sent a couple of failures at us (maybe it was loss of some cooling or partial traction - i don't remember, but the diagnostic failures popped up just as they do on real locomotives).

I didn't expect that 6 degrees of freedom are useful to operate on a machine that runs on basically smooth rails, but the simulation of starting, stopping and turning were practically indistinguishable from riding on a real locomotive.
posted by jazh at 12:16 PM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


At a train show, I saw a real diesel loco control stand adapted to control a train sim. I think it was Trainz.

In answer to Schmod's question, I believe the front-runners in train sims are Trainz and Railworks. I've had Trainz since about 2010. It's pretty decent and really emphasizes operation. Price is ok, but there always seems to be some finite level of glitches or small bugs after every release.
posted by Artful Codger at 12:21 PM on March 24, 2013


Throw in some crazy AI driver behavior ala Driving in Russia and I imagine the Russia races could be pretty entertaining...

Yeah, I also thought about throwing in more stuff from English Russia like miles and miles of semis and other vehicles stuck in a road of mud, or crossing a Siberian river driver's window deep.
posted by dhartung at 12:29 PM on March 24, 2013


I've been gaming forever, but I had no idea really about these types of games until notmydesk started writing hilarious takes on them over at the PC Gamer Sim-plicity column. Now I see several of my Steam friends playing "Euro Truck Simulator 2" on a regular basis, and driving through Europe with music on sounds rather relaxing. Hm...
posted by gemmy at 12:41 PM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Now I see several of my Steam friends playing "Euro Truck Simulator 2" on a regular basis, and driving through Europe with music on sounds rather relaxing.

Now just imagine the pitter-patter of rain on your windshield and the side windows and mirrors while you listen to the rhythmic swish-swish of the windshield wipers, and the occasional clash of thunder in the background. I've turned off the radio for long stretches at a time, listening to nothing but the rain and watching the soft glow of the headlights on the road ahead of me in the middle of nowhere. It's impossible for me not to find this comforting at the end of a long day, for some reason. It's probably the most effective thing I've found for forgetting the troubles of the day. It's like I've escaped into the game, or something.
posted by SpacemanStix at 1:38 PM on March 24, 2013 [7 favorites]


there's an incredibly hilarious video Giant Bomb put out on the game recently.
Eh. I can understand doing goofy things in the simulator, but this wasn't it. This was a bunch of people not even aware enough to drive straight or actually make an effort. It was excruciating -- "no, no, your damn lights are *not* on!", "the car passed you quickly because you're going 10kph in the middle of a two lane road!". It was like being the only sober person at a party. The only reason I watched to the end was to see the pretty graphics :-)
posted by smidgen at 2:04 PM on March 24, 2013


I'm kinda guessing some of their target market is training? That'd explain the push for more detail and realism.
posted by pwnguin at 2:34 PM on March 24, 2013


I've never played a computer game, because (apart from my age, which means i just missed them, except Pong) Pong looked mind-numbingly boring, i don't want to even pretend to kill someone, my friend had the legend of zelda and boy did it look pointless, and those facebook games look silly and crap. But this is real, and you learn a skill, or get an experience, from real life, which you wouldn't otherwise. I'm a 40yo woman, computer-illiterate until 6yrs ago. I reckon there's a huge market out there for this sort of thing amongst the sort of person who doesn't buy games or doesn't use the computer much (well, that last set aren't such a good market). It'll be like the movie industry: suddenly the games industry will discover that not everyone's a teenage boy looking for a wank and to blow everyone's head off, and it'll be presented as a revelation by the media for several weeks. Or like lace-up shoes, it'll never get mentioned anywhere but actually be the bigger industry (than heels).
posted by maiamaia at 3:54 PM on March 24, 2013


a Semi, in british english, is a house that is actually half of what looks like one house - imagine a terrace of just 2. It means only 1 neighbour who might play Rammstein at 3am or put weedkiller on your privet 'because it's a weed', and it used to have snob value because you looked like a bank manager's villa, although actually you only had half a villa. Very popular in the early 20th century, when we actually built houses not slums, so a huge part of the housing stock. Not very drive-able though.
posted by maiamaia at 4:04 PM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


From the article:

And then there's the strong 35+ male audience -- "basically people who have some professional, or should I say emotional, ties to trucking or transportation industry typically," Sebor notes.

I have a dear pal who was a bus driver for over thirty years and retired in the last couple years. He still has his passenger license and picks up driving gigs here and there for a rehab program, seems to enjoy it.

He is a stone fan of these driving sim games. It's actually totally awesome to hear him talk about them and how impressive they are.

Outside of the driving games, I came across a team video review of Farming Simulator 2012 sometime last year, and it was practially hallucinatory.

Over time, I have come to understand my own hardcore sim orientation, to ww1 mmo aircombat, is just as nichey as any of these titles. Most mmo aircombat simmers, as you would expect, strongly prefer bigger faster better, and thus WW2 sims are dominant. The existence and continued health of these nichey sims is great, great news and something that will keep sims interesting and competitive for the foreseeable future.
posted by mwhybark at 4:59 PM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


That article was defective. The whole pitch is that this is a niche demographic: 8-12 year olds. Eastern Europeans. And then in the last few tiny paragraphs ... "number one best-selling game" "Number one PC game in France and Germany" "Steam ... number one spot."

I think there's a tendency to evaluate their significance based on how they relate to "gaming culture" similar to other things about "casual" vs. "hard-core" gaming.

If Truck Sim 2 and Call Of Duty 2 both sell 20 million copies, a lot of people will still see COD as the mainstream one because it has the mainstream customers if you see what I'm saying.
posted by RobotHero at 5:32 PM on March 24, 2013


Let's not forget the first mundane vehicle simulation probably ever, Lunar Lander.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 6:44 PM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


something about the long-distance realistic "open world" driving appeals to me.

It's not realistic at all, but it is definitely long distance (and gorgeous) -- I wrote this about the quickly-forgotten (but beloved, by me at least) FUEL a year or two back. It's periodically on sale on Steam for a few bucks, and I still love to cue up some music and take one of the motorcycles out for a relaxing ride once in a while.

It takes about 8 hours to drive from one side of the world to the other. It is huge. (If you do play it, grab the Re-FUELED mod from moddb to make it easier to mess around with.)
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:05 PM on March 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


Well, I guess we know where Google "driverless" cars are getting their drivers from.

"Simulation" my arse.
posted by Blue_Villain at 7:07 PM on March 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


That Kerbal video is amazing. If I was a much younger person, I'd be so invested in learning that. Seems like there's a steep learning curve.
posted by yeti at 7:10 PM on March 24, 2013


That article was defective. The whole pitch is that this is a niche demographic: 8-12 year olds. Eastern Europeans. And then in the last few tiny paragraphs ... "number one best-selling game" "Number one PC game in France and Germany" "Steam ... number one spot."

I read a discussion of this on the r/gaming sub-Reddit a while ago. During a lull in the release of major games, there was a burst of half-mocking half-enthusiastic publicity for mundane simulation games like these in the UK gaming press. All of a sudden everyone was talking about them.

As a result, during that lull, some of these games became quite popular as gamers checked them out -- for a short amount of time. Then the next round of big games came out and Truck Sim dropped away from the top of Steam.

So they are still niche audience games in the long run, despite the occasional boom.
posted by Harvey Kilobit at 9:44 PM on March 24, 2013


Do any of the submarine simulators teach you how to solve target range/course/speed from bearing/sound frequency?

The Silent Hunter series does that for WWII subs. Third one is the best, I hear.
posted by Pyrogenesis at 2:09 AM on March 25, 2013


Do any of the submarine simulators teach you how to solve target range/course/speed from bearing/sound frequency?

Silent Hunter does, indeed, have elements of this. One thing that hard-core nerds, and actual submariners, can do is download some of the various realism mods which allow one to compute targeting solutions in much the same way that this would have been done in WWII. Keep in mind, though, that many of the techniques used in the period will seem antiquated to the modern submariner. In the 1940's, acoustic intelligence was very much in its infancy. You can get bearing, some identity information, and close/near from the hydrophone but little else.

If you want to simulate modern passive sonar stuff, your best bet is probably Dangerous Waters, the now-dated but incredibly deep modern warfare simulation by Sonalysts. The basic premise of the game is that you control one ship or submarine, and have access to 'cleaned up' versions of the actual duty stations that sailors would operate in the control room. If you want to analyse an acoustic contact, you have to look at the sonar displays and analyse them using the tools in front of you, realistically clunky user interface and all. You can even, if you have friends long-suffering enough, play a multi-player version with each player running a single station in the control room.

Indeed, Dangerous Waters is such a faithful recreation of the modern naval battlefield that it acts rather more like an information-management game than a traditional simulation. There are entire pre-scripted missions that involve nothing more than ID'ing large numbers of neutral contacts. Be prepared for lots of dot stacking.
posted by Dreadnought at 7:14 AM on March 25, 2013 [2 favorites]


A YouTube favorite of mine and my partner's right now: Trucking Tuesdays. Some good examples: Tow Truck Simulator, Part 1 and Part 2.
posted by persephone's rant at 4:56 PM on March 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Hooking up the simulation games to real world services sort of happens in a surreal, depressing movie called Sleep Dealer (2008), I see it was mentioned in the recent thread on drone strikes. These minimum-wage VR workers in Mexico do shifts in tanks frying their brains, remoting operate robots on highrise building sites in cities in the US. Meanwhile drones are guarding their privatised water supply at home and it gets worse from there.
posted by yoHighness at 8:05 PM on March 28, 2013


Dreadnought: "You can even, if you have friends long-suffering enough, play a multi-player version with each player running a single station in the control room."

I love stuff like this. My favorite is the guy who exclusively played Silent Hunter in real-time, basically going about his days and nights around the house until suddenly he heard a klaxon, at which point he'd run over the to computer and see what enemy activity was afoot. It apparently took him weeks to complete a single mission.
posted by Copronymus at 8:16 PM on March 28, 2013 [1 favorite]


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