Hackman: The Birth of the Political Attack Videogame

hackman.jpg

Add games to the list of media that can be turned into political attack ads. Russ Carnahan, the Democratic incumbent in Missouri's 3rd District, recently released a PacMan take-off to hit his opponent, Republican challenger Ed Martin on various ethics-related issues.

The game mechanics are just like PacMan with the exception that your little avatar is Martin's head, and the ghouls chasing you are actually gavels. As you successfully avoid them, your score is noted in "Tax Dollars Wasted." When they catch you, the gavels smush your head and a little political attack ad is shown with the options to continue or read more about Martin's alleged infelicities.

After a few rounds, I think it's a pretty fun game, as far as little casual browser games go. But I have to wonder if being forced to play Martin could actually generate a little empathy for him. In the game universe, you are Martin and the Carnahan campaign's attack messaging comes up when you lose, not when you win.

Hat tip: Patrick di Justo.

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