CHENNAI: Perhaps in its initial forms, simulation games actually had a purpose — simulating real-life activities for job training, skill development etc. Rapidly, the steadfast videogames transformed into somewhat of a novelty variety, made fun of by a large part of the internet for their impossible difficulty levels with sarcastic irony. Here’s a brief description of a few popular ones
Surgeon Simulator has been the most popular in this arena, where one plays as Nigel Burke, with Bob being the victim. It is advertised as a dark humorous game, where the odds of you failing disastrously and disemboweling Bob are very high.
In some cases, one may consider social media itself to be a social life simulator. The game Sims, unlike Facebook, does it without actually breaking the fourth wall. Sims comes in a variety of editions - University life, World Adventure, Pets, and even Medieval! Virtual Families is another such game, where you raise your own family in a house. Its awe-filled reviews include, “Love that you can buy a grocery program and health insurance.”
Is Simulation Games really a thing?
Weirdly, it is more probable to find a simulator game for the most unlikely of daily activities. The Steam Summer Sale simulation is one of these. The online Steam sales are a steal, and immensely popular amongst gamers. This game enables purchasing of infinite games on a backdrop resembling the actual Steam website. The Robot Vacuum simulator is highly immersive, showing the players the adventurous life of a vacuum cleaner. The trailer of Goat Simulator displays the fleeting clip of a burning human, and a goat lying in the grass, looking seemingly innocent, and that is reason enough to play.
Vehicle Simulation games
Most of these seem serious – American Truck Driving simulator uses high end graphics and represents popular American trucks and roads, allowing one to traverse widely recognised landmarks and landscapes. The reviews reveal the experiences of people who, more often than not, use this game as meditation and relaxation — with just the trucks, some good music and the subtle traffic on the highways. The genial sounding ‘BeamNG.drive’ is a car wrecking simulator. It uses real world physics to imitate phenomenon — so if you ever imagined driving your car off the bridge to just see what happens, play this game first.
(The writer is an economics graduate who spends her leisure time preparing for the zombie apocalypse)