Monday, November 03, 2008

The must-play game of the year

Above: Do it!

A while back, I reviewed Stardock's The Political Machine 2008 for Paste. It's a turn-based strategy game all about the presidential election, with fairly realistic simulations of campaign fundraising, political ads, and the all-important electoral college. It was a lot of fun, even for a remedial strategist such as myself.

As much as I decry ever referring to a video game as "just a game," they're all just games compared to a real-life presidential election. Many of us are spending the season agonizing over which hot new release to get. Even when we settle on one, we immediately feel like we made the wrong call. ("Why, oh why did I leave Fallout just sitting on the shelf?") It's probably not much of an exaggeration to say that gamers are putting serious brainpower into figuring out how to cope with all these games. But the impact of that decision pales beside the consequences of a presidential election. With a teetering economy, people losing their homes, two wars, and countless other obstacles facing us all, I am begging you, if you haven't yet, to spend just a little bit of time today not thinking about games, and instead thinking about who to vote for.

In the movie WarGames, the computer realizes that the only way to win a nuclear war is not to play. Voting is the opposite: the only way to lose is not to play. So please go out there tomorrow and cast your ballot for whatever candidate you think is the best choice, based on their stated policies. Every election is important, and this one is no different. Nothing else you do all year will matter as much.

(There, I made it through a couple paragraphs without getting cute or editorializing. I'll just hit the "publish post" button here and --



Anonymous said...

HAHA barack people actually stop and think of what B. Hussein is about? I mean it seems like everyone is just swayed by the vast majority of liberal media, such as news channels that takes his best snippest from interviews and uses it constantly to glamorize his ideals.

He has no experience, isn't patriotic, wants to raise taxes and increase social services for people who dont work, while the rest of us works our asses off only for our chunk of pay check to go for them. Domestic issues, foreign policies, it's McCain who has shown his resolute nature...and NO this isnt about going to war with Iran like most liberals think..

People STOP reading biased news! Think for yourselves and VOTE for McCain!!!

Mitch Krpata said...

Thanks Vin

Kirk Battle said...

I'm confused, I should be swayed by the conservative media and vote for who they think is best?

What if I think for myself and deduce that Obama is still a better candidate?

Anonymous said...

I agree with Vin and through personal experience have confirmed that not reading the news helps facilitate voting for John McCain.

Anonymous said...

I don't see not reading/watching the news at all as a good thing. In order to make a decision on who to vote for I think you need to be as well informed as you can be. That means reading, listening and watching information from BOTH sides and then making up your OWN mind. I have done so and choose to vote for Obama. I made this choice for a lot of reasons, not because the media is telling me to (which is so not true if you're watching some right leaning programs). It's fine if you want to vote for McCain, but at least have a good reason to, not just because you think the media is dumb.

Sparky said...

Remember to vote on your ballot questions and propositions. I generally recommend that you vote against these if you have any qualms at all -- bad laws and amendments passed by public vote can be very difficult to undo. For Massachusetts, question 1 is an obvious no. Question 2 and question 3 seem worthy of support, but you should consider that implementing either is likely to involve a long and costly series of court cases for the Commonwealth. The moral or protest value of these questions should be weighed against that cost.

Mitch Krpata said...

Good point. Also worth mentioning that in many states -- Massachusetts included! -- your vote seems to carry proportional more impact on ballot questions than on the presidential election.

As I was voting this morning, I noticed that every downticket race except for the Senate had a Democrat running unopposed. It's like voting in North Korea!

Mitch Krpata said...

Er, proportionally more impact.

Sparky said...

That's still so very odd for me. I've voted in previous elections in Alabama and North Carolina, two states that have traditionally been rather red, but the downticket races there always seem to have minority party entries -- not just from the Democrats, but Libertarians, Natural Law Party, and even Greens (admittedly, that was in Chapel Hill). Speaking as an independent voter, the white-flag attitude of the Republican party in Mass. is a little depressing.