Hi This is my design fictions pressure project.
Initial Concepts & Ideation
So, the one-word that I chose to play around with was “war”. Initially, I was working with the idea of subverting weapons of war to peaceful ends, or with the idea of rebuilding after wartime, inspired by the work of architect Lebbeus Woods. In class, I and two other group members collectively brainstormed around the different significations of war and what possible future scenarios could be like.
However, dismayed by the increasingly naive technoutopian beliefs of my classmates and their easy faith in the ‘good side’ of commercial tech, in the end I decided to design a game that would work to critique corporate futures by showing how easily technologies being developed for peacetime could be weaponized when push came to shove. In pushing the implicit politics of technocratic corporate agendas into the explicit realm, I hopes to show that many of the technologies in the works for peace could just as easily be turned into stuff that could kill. To sweeten the plot, I was initially playing with the idea of corporations playing the role of world saviour by giving in to lifeboat ethics and wiping out major chunks of the world’s population to bring it to “sustainable” levels.
In the end though, while I started by trying to code a small video game using Construct 2, I ran into debugging problems and had to ditch the idea last minute, instead using the art and assets to create a tangible board game version. The final board game puts players into the seat of a leader of one of four corporations (modelled after four 80’s cartoon evil corporations). As each corporation researches new technologies, players have the options to instigate key events that will push the world closer to global war. Once the doomsday clock strikes 12, all the corporations will weaponise their tech and wage war upon each other. The corporation that is left in the end will rule the world.
For my showcase in class I created a rules sheet, and paper based mockups of the game board, tokens, dice, and cards. The general response was pretty enthusiastic, although some people didn’t quite get the game.