Reviews by Shopper

PeaceMaker
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Makes you really see the news for the first time

PeaceMaker is a revelation. By letting you play both sides in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict it makes you really confront the complex issues involved. After playing it, the news from the region will be viewed with a new light of understanding.

Stepping into the shoes of the Palestinian President or the Israeli Prime Minister and negotiating the shifting winds of public favour and the rough seas of violence of both sides makes one appreciate the delicate balancing act of building peace both within and without your people.

Making the policy decisions, negotiating with radical and conservative parties, choosing where to spend money and dreading the next outburst of violence makes the issues stick in your mind long after finishing the game. More understanding comes with doing than reading magazines or watching TV.

Playing the game is a fast and efficient way of learning about the seemingly neverending Middle-East conflict. In just a few hours the player will make many illuminating connections between the often conflicting actions and speeches of the participating groups - and the consequences of the actions. When the same findings are shown daily in the international news it makes you really appreciate the work that has gone into PeaceMaker.

The game is fun and engaging to play and encourages deep thinking about the conflict. A strategy game has seldom felt so alive and current. PeaceMaker proves that the real world provides subjects many times more interesting than the usual fantasy fare offered in the name of entertainment.

Above all, PeaceMaker provides hope. Hope of the conflict being solvable, hope of mutual understanding and respect being possible. Hope of finally setting aside the myriad legitimate grievances of both sides and working together to achieve peace. Hope of people from both sides to mostly view each other as people first and members of a different group second. A game couldn't aspire to higher ends.

It does not even matter if you agree with the assumptions the game makes or the accuracy of the many facts presented. You will think, and you will learn. And you will have fun.

by Jarmo Petäjäaho, Finland - Apr 14th 2007
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