McGonigal: “The Vanguard of Reality Hacking”

New Yorker have posted up a video of researcher Jane McGonigal talking about “the intersection between games and reality.” She talks about some of her experiments in gaming, as well as looking at what’s most interesting experimental game development at the moment, alternate reality gaming, and how massively-multiplayer gaming could have benefits for the world at large. Some entirely out of context sample quotes:

“I have a dream of building an MMO where my dog is my avatar.”

“We’re going to move toward building a reality that works more like our favourite games.”

“Everybody has to calm down and relax in order to win the game.”

“I like to think of these as the vanguard of reality hacking.”

Go watch.


  1. Jay says:

    I remember playing the ARG Perplex City. There was one memorable point where a bunch of us had to help the in game protagonists hack and infiltrate a skyscraper, but they had live camera feeds from some studio in London, and it felt proper real. It was proper tense mate

  2. Lunaran says:

    I remember watching this and having one of those moments where I was left feeling flustered and angry and wasn’t sure why. I think I just got the general sense that she comes to games from completely outside them, and purports to understand them really well, and then goes and suggests an MMO where “you have the corgie and the poodle and the rottweiler and they all have to … you know, get together before they can go do stuff.”

  3. Jim Rossignol says:

    The cat is more of a soloing class, right?

  4. anonymous17 says:

    Ms. McGonigal should watch Dennou Coil.

  5. Babs says:

    What is this, the Guardian Gamesblog?


  6. Lunaran says:

    I think the cat is apparently more of “an animal the speaker doesn’t already own at least one of and adore”

  7. Anonymous says:

    The first thing we do, let’s kill all the viral marketers.

  8. Robin says:

    What an annoying mode of speech that advertising executive has.