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What shouldwill you make Dan do today?



We see the obvious sources of power everywhere: Military Might, Politicial Influence, and Money-Money-Money.

But what of the less-than-obvious powers? Those invisible guiding hands that shape our beliefs and attitudes. Those unseen forces influencing what we think, who we are, and how we act. Do we see those powers as clearly?

The cultural items we encounter everyday speak volumes about who we are and who we aspire to be. Books, Movies, Games, and more -- all have something to say. But what they say -- and how that impacts us -- is not always clear.

What if you could choose what books somebody will read -- the movies they will watch -- the video games they play? Would you be able to eventually control their thoughts & beliefs? Their actions?



Meet Dan!

We will control the cultural items that appear in Dan's Life. And this will determine Dan's decisions and actions. What should will you make Dan do today?


Educators: Cultural Overlord includes two modes: "Discovery Mode" (entertainment) and "EDU Mode" (educational).

Discovery Mode is a streamlined version with a primary focus on Dan's experience, allowing for quick replay to explore the multiple story branches based on choices made during the game. EDU Mode includes additional educational information during the break between each Act. The educational info explores how the cultural artifacts contribute to Dan's decision-making and poses questions designed for classroom discussion.


Culture Overlord was developed by Lucas Vially and is the winning video game from the 2020 Life.Love. Game Design Challenge presented by Jennifer Ann's Group, a nonprofit charity working to overcome the global problem of abusive relationships, particularly among adolescents. Culture Overlord is a 2022 Finalist for the Games for Change Awards and was a 2021 James Paul Gee Learning Games Award Finalist.

Development

Lucas Vially

@LucasVially

Produced by

Jennifer Ann's Group

@stopTDV

Published by

Life Love Publishing

@LifeLovePublish

ESRB Rating

E for Everyone

 




Gaming Against Violence recognized as Top-50 Innovator

The nonprofit program that produced this game is a Finalist for the 2022 Classy Awards. Learn more about 'Gaming Against Violence'.


New Game Design Challenge: Resilience

The 15th Annual Life.Love. Game Design Challenge will launch in June and the theme is resilience. Register now for the resilience game challenge.


Winner Announced!

2021 Life.Love.Game Design Challenge: UNPLUGGED.

The winning game from our 14th Annual Life.Love. Game Design Challenge about Power & Control is 'The Big Build Up' created by Lien Tran and Lynn Baus. To be notified of our game design challenges please sign up for our game newsletter.




About Jennifer Ann's Group


Jennifer Ann's Group is a nonprofit charity. Through their Gaming Against Violence program they have produced more than sixty prosocial video games since 2008. Game topics include bystander awareness, consent, healthy relationships, and teen dating violence prevention.




This award-winning approach to violence prevention is evidence-based and the games are available for use in university studies. Please contact Jennifer Ann's Group to discuss possible grant collaborations, dissertation ideas, and research opportunities.




Jennifer Ann's Group was created in 2006. More information and additional free resources for teen dating violence prevention are available at JenniferAnn.org.




Jennifer Ann's Group® is a registered trademark of
The Jennifer Ann Crecente Memorial Group, Inc.

Download

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Click download now to get access to the following files:

Culture Overlord 1.1.2 (Android) 67 MB
Culture Overlord 1.1.2 (Linux) 54 MB
Culture Overlord 1.1.2 (MAC OS) 48 MB
Culture Overlord 1.1.2 (WINDOWS PC) 49 MB
Culture Overlord Worksheet: Ads 1.png 1 MB

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Development log

Comments

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I enjoyed the aesthetic, but the message was much too over the top. Watch a movie about being a gentleman? Character is practically wearing a top hat and a monocle. See scooter? Buy scooter. I like the overall gist of the message but not a fan of how obvious it was. 

Well put together game mechanically, good job

Thank you for taking the time to write a review.

We should point out that Dan's over-the-top reaction to media items in the game is deliberate.

This is a central conceit of the game.

The goal here is not to convince players that watching a movie about being a gentleman leads to one's wearing a monocle. Instead, we are trying to encourage discussions about real-world impacts which are much more subtle. But, since they are subtle, we would have to include thousands of such interactions to show their impact.

Here we are not using the conventional "how will Dan respond?" approach as used in the choose-your-own-adventure books. Instead, the player decides how Dan responds by selecting the media items to which Dan is exposed. The central conceit used here is intended to comically direct the narrative, while allowing the player to experience one of many versions of Dan's story in 20 minutes or so.

We are looking at making some changes to the game, including making it more clear that unique approach requires a suspension of disbelief. Your review will help inform how we will accomplish that. Thanks again.

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