Conflict simulation, peacebuilding, and development

Daily Archives: 18/11/2016

Urban Nightmare/State of Chaos: A Wide-Area Megagame


On 1 July 2017, gamers from around the world will be conducting the first ever wide area megagame, Urban Nightmare: State of Chaos. This will involve  multiple game locations (each with 50+ players), linked to each other in real time within a  common scenario:

As a megagame, the Urban Nightmare games explore the higher level decision making during a major, potentially existential, crisis. In the movies and other games the zombie trope generally focusses on the individual or on small groups of survivors, but rarely explores how the world gets to that state. It all just happened and got out of control.

In a megagame we can really look at how things get that far out of control. Or not. In the emerging gameplay of a megagame the outcome is entirely open to the consequences of player decisions and their interactions.

In the previous version of the game, the focus was on just one city—Romero City—a place beset with many mundane problems of its own even without the outbreak of a terrifying pandemic. In UN: State of Chaos, we have extended the perspective to explore what is happening across the whole state. Five cities (of which Romero City is the largest) are all struggling with their own troubles and turning to the State Governor and the National Guard for help. Will this be enough? Or will the state Governer have to sacrifice valuable political capital and go, cap in hand, to the Federal authorities and the President for Federal help?

Games will be conducted in the following locations (and possibly others):

  • London (UK)
  • Bristol (UK)
  • Southhampton (UK)
  • Cambridge (UK)
  • Leeds (UK)
  • Brussels (Belgium)
  • Nijmegen (Netherlands)
  • New York (USA)
  • Montreal (Canada)

McGill.jpegYou’ll notice the inclusion of Montreal on the list. We’ll be running a small game at McGill University, with players will assume the role of key local, provincial, and national actors in neighbouring Northland. Do they help out their southern neighbours? Turn back refugees, deny aid, and prevent the spread of the disaster at all costs? Or take advantage of the chaos to the south to pursue their own hidden agenda?

We will not be opening the game up for registration until mid-February, soon after we complete the Something’s Up In Binni! megagame, also at McGill University.

Watch this space!

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