I, like many others, was very excited for the release of Tom Clancy’s The Division. However, with talk of its novelty, I was truly expecting something different. I am in no shape or form disappointed, in fact I LOVE IT; however, it is very much an Assassin’s Creed mission cavalcade meets any generic shooter with the novelty of an open multiplayer world that feels compelling.
However with it's brilliant campaigning, I couldn't help to think that the game made to promote the game, was in fact more revolutionary. Collapse, made everyday seem so much more frightening..
Working at the department of Epidemiology in my youth, right after I graduated from my master, before going on to Phd, I got a chance to explore global health and its issues.
Right during my period at the department the H1N1 (Swine flue) broke out.
I saw first hand the kind of panic that arises when there is an air borne virus roaming around, and the media covers its progression with apocalyptic tones.
Several of my acquaintances and friends are also doctors, nurses and global health workers who volunteered and researched on the Ebola epidemic. Seeing stories and images of the trials of keeping a society afloat during a highly deadly and contagious virus, which in the conditions of poverty (no plumbing and shared bathrooms) become easily transmitted, made me scared.
In an instance, there were reports of people storming hospitals and protesting quarantines, creating riots and stealing equipment because the authorities were poorly organized and very uninformative. With this, help was further delayed and even more individuals were infected.
Without reliable media and accessible Internet, the population had to puzzle together information, and furthermore, poverty drove some groups to plunder equipment.
These individuals weren’t insane. They were scared and misinformed, and no matter where you are, this is bound to happen.
And Collaps really captures that scenario, and places it right in your back yard. Using data from your very own neighborhood.
I would have loved a game, in which the objective is to avoid a virus, rather than to witness its aftermath.
And preferably without using weapons, and if having to use weapons, one would be limited to a handgun with 6 bullets at the time.
I am in no way a "please no violence" type of person as my favorite games involve face to face combats and chainsaws, but I've had enough of those. I want another type of fear.
I want a game in which I would survive with only wits, and collaboration in a multiplayer universe. Together you have to find ways to transport food, supply medicine and most importantly to inform people. A handful of guns would be available in the entire game, and you can decide what to do with your gun. Either be a good guy or a bad guy. Do you want to share your morphine or spend the rest of the game defending it? Do you want to encourage anarchy? Or do you want to maintain society?
Because you see, the real enemies aren’t the people who try to steal food, they are the rational ones, selfish yes, but rational. The real enemies are those who spread fear and misinformation. The real enemy, is fear.
Would it be exciting?
It would. Trust me. Just ask people who were active gamers in World of Warcraft during their infamous outbreak. Trying to survive in an infected world is fun, because viruses are our oldest foes and allies.
Just imagine, a global community of gamers, fighting to survive.! Tom Clancy’s The Division offers this world, yet it leaves out the true enemy, yourself.