Build proper pandemic practices into video games to encourage safer behavior in real life

Build proper pandemic practices into video games to encourage safer behavior in real life

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Milo Weinberg
Milo Weinberg signed this petition

Most people know that pandemic safety measures such as wearing masks, washing hands, and keeping safe distance from others are extremely important during this time. However, it can be difficult to remember to consistently follow these guidelines and this is worrying to many -- especially so to parents who are worrying that their kids are more caught up in having fun rather than being safe.

One way that these safe habits could be encouraged among youth is through video games. Video games are popular among young children and make an impression upon them. If the players of video games had reason to follow some of these pandemic safety protocols in gameplay, it could help them develop healthy habits that would carry over into the real world.

Video games can be altered by their developers to incentivize and gamify proper pandemic safety in-game. Some of the most popular video games currently are Fortnite, Minecraft, and Roblox. Here are some ways they could be modified to help players develop healthier habits:

Fortnite: Players could lose health points if they come too close to each other, could be awarded cosmetic outfits / skins  along with masks for being safe, get bonuses for washing hands, find new weapons like "viral blaster" or "super sanitizer" in loot drops along with masks which could diminish health points lost for being in "the storm" or not socially distancing in-game.

Minecraft: Players and developers could create different Minecraft servers such as a pandemic simulator "server" or a roleplay "server" which simulate life during a pandemic and give in-game money or bonuses for following pandemic safety practices such as not getting too close to the non-player-characters or each other.

Roblox: Developers could create simulation games like a simulation of the world under a pandemic or hospital / doctor simulator also set during a pandemic.

Of course, there are a multitude of other ways to implement the promotion of pandemic safety in these and other video games.

We call for video game companies, programmers, and players alike to develop and implement ways to promote pandemic safety into video games to instill good habits in gamers and make the real world a safer place for all!