Games to control humans?*

Games to control humans?*


In an effort to create a new standard of reality-based entertainment
while attempting to tackle a huge social problem, a video game that
controls actual human beings is being launched by German game developer,
Cy-Vox. Called UltCom, for “Ultimate Control,” the game will employ
thousands of homeless people throughout North America that will agree to
do the bidding of online players. The system has been tested in several
European cities and is reported to work flawlessly. But just before you
start thinking the you can get these people to pull holdups or jump in
front of moving vehicle, there are some very strict rules.

Company spokesperson, Toby Ramstein, explains, “This is a
revolutionary concept. Instead of sprites, players will control actual
human beings in a variety of situations. These situations could be
called levels or missions. They are largely predetermined, so there is
no chance of eliciting dangerous or illegal actions. We purposely chose
homeless people for the playable characters so they would be able to
receive a steady paycheck while still wandering the streets. And if
something does go wrong, they usually don’t have a family that would
suffer from such a loss.”

Using high-powered consoles such as the PS3 and Xbox 360, players
will purchase “game hours.” Each hour of gaming is expensive since it
requires a controllable person and a one-person audio/video crew. Only
one player can control one character at a time, but other controlled
characters can interact with each other if they are in the same
location. This opens up plenty of multiplayer scenarios.

Characters are moved throughout the city by simply using the D-pad or
analog stick on your controller. The homeless person receives these
commands in a special suit that triggers tiny shocks in the direction of
intention. Converastion trees will appear to give you dialog choices so
your character can interact with real people.

A large part of the fun will be having your character interact with
real life people in real live situations. You can have your character
beg for money, do a dance for a cigarette, perform a magic trick for a
beer, or even offer to sweep the floor in a restaurant for a meal. But
Ramstein says that’s just the tip of the iceburg. “Imagine your
character trying to get a date with a girl. Then imagine having to go to
meet her parents. Remember, this character may be a little quirky, and
quite possibly, offensive looking and smelling. You never know what
might happen with such potentially volatile people,” he chuckles.

All transmissions are via satellite, including the two switchable
camera angles which include a first-person perspective as well as one
provided by a professionally trained camera operator. All of this does
not come cheap, says Ramstein as people can expect to spend about a
hundred dollars an hour to play. But as Ramstein explains, “It’s
everyone’s dream to control people. We’re delivering that dream to the
world. It’s going to be an addicting experience. UltCon is going to be
the crack of the twenty-first century.”

*This article is presented as an exclusive Cheat Code Central feature titled “Are you dumb enough to believe this?” Please check back each Friday for the newest edition.

To top