Your name is Divya Patel. You are a 26-year-old woman living in India with your four children. You are a bricklayer and you make $1.25 a day. In order to survive, you are forced to make difficult decisions all the time. Would you be able to survive one month with this lifestyle?
That is the premise of the new online game launched by Live58, a nonprofit organization devoted to ending extreme poverty. The game, Survive125, encourages gamers to live the life that is a reality for 1.3 billion people -- about 26 percent of the population -- in India by challenging them to survive one month on $1.25 a day.
“Live58 is made up of 10 non-profits working to see the end of extreme poverty, by educating and inspiring people on issues of extreme poverty,” Scott Seibold, director of media for Live58, told Mashable. “Lots of people have done videos, but we never saw anyone take on gaming, and we wanted to create something experimental.”
While playing the part of Patel, a gamer must make decisions such as whether to send his or her teenage daughter to work at a factory with a presence of sex trafficking in order to make more money and whether to stay home with a sick child, which would require missing one day’s worth of wages. The game is over when Patel runs out of money.
Although the game doesn't have a real-life charitable component, it follows a recent trend of Internet games created to spread awareness about social issues.
Wetopia, for example -- a Facebook game launched last November -- allows gamers to create a virtual village and then turn points won into monetary donations for charities worldwide.
Similarly, Nicholas Kristof's online game Half the Sky -- which shares the title of the journalist's best-selling book and will launch next fall -- aims to raise awareness for the plight of women and girls in disadvantaged areas worldwide. The game will allow gamers to maintain a virtual village and donate to charity by completing tasks.
Do you think Live58’s new game will make an impact? Let us know in the comments below.