Alter Ego (game)

From Academic Kids

Alter Ego is a 1986 personality computer game released by Activision. It was created by Peter J. Favaro, Ph.D. for the Commodore 64, PC (under DOS) and the Apple II. The game allows the user to make decisions for an imaginary person (being therefore their alter ego) and shows what possible consequences decisions could have on that person.

The game is based on actual psychological knowledge and experience, and the authors did their best to create a game which contains scientifical material but was playable and enjoyable at the same time. It was a novel concept, to some degree similar to The Sims (but while Alter Ego let the player experience his own personality, or the consequences of changing it, The Sims lets the player to observe and explore others—hidden—personality and their interaction in situations).

The game presented the user with a tree diagram with icons at certain nodes. The icons allowed the user choose certain "experiences" or situations to explore. The icons showed what kind of experience it held by its picture (e.g. a heart denotes an emotional event). After making a choice in each node, the user was moved back to the tree with that node marked as completed. In this manner, the user could experience their alter ego's entire life and examine what impact their decisions had.

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