The British Red Cross has launched Traces of Hope, an online alternate reality game (ARG) situated in the midst of the Uganda civil war. The game, according to the Red Cross press release, “combines storytelling, detective work, technology and treasure-hunt style gameplay in a compelling 21st century narrative, as players seek to reunite Joseph with his mother.”
The release of the game coincides with Civilians and Conflict month, a media campaign to highlight some of the ways that the Red Cross helps people during and after armed conflicts. By participating in an “alternate” reality that they will probably never experience in their real lives, players from across the world can learn about and develop a much deeper appreciation for the issues that arise with armed conflicts.
“We’ve pulled out all the stops to create an experience where players will feel they are really interacting with Joseph’s world,” said Dorothea Arndt, British Red Cross, New Media Manager.
By communicating directly with Joseph, players find themselves caught up in a hunt across the internet to reunite him with his mother.
While it is involving and exciting, Traces of Hope also has a serious point; there are thousands of people like Joseph all around the world whose lives are shattered by conflict. But all around the world, wherever you find people like Joseph, you’ll also find the Red Cross, reconnecting families and rebuilding lives.
And be sure to check out the listings of serious games here on Mission to Learn:
Mission to Learn