Creating a provocative, socially conscious game with “Carbon Warfare”
Published 2 years ago
Driving gamers to burn the world in order to teach them how to save it
I started Virtuos back in October 2004, and we have expanded globally over the past decade to China, US, Canada and France with over 1,000 full-time professionals working together on videogame content development. In this time, we’ve successfully delivered nearly 900 projects for clients that include 18 of the top 20 digital entertainment companies and renowned independent studios worldwide. Players may recognize some of our 3D art and content development in some of the most beloved videogame franchises like Final Fantasy, Batman: Return to Arkham, Ghost Recon, NBA 2K and XCOM: Enemy Unknown. Additionally, we’ve provided artwork for some of the all-time blockbuster films like Star Wars and Jurassic Park. We’re really proud of the work that we’ve done for our partners, and will continue to focus on being the partner of choice for renowned digital entertainment and independent studios worldwide. That said, we’re also focused on our own original development and this is what I wanted to highlight further. 
Our first-party mobile studio based in Paris, Gamesource Studio, is leading the development of our new simulation game, Carbon Warfare. The inspiration for this game started early this year in a discussion with a friend and my team about the potential for a socially conscious game about global warming. Inherently, France is a very environmentally aware country with strong ties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and COP22, so the idea resonated immediately with my colleagues in Paris as well as those in China. In large cities like Shanghai, everyone tracks the daily pollution ratings as closely as the weather forecast, so we are very aware of the challenges to address climate changes.
What makes our take on this environmentally-themed strategy simulation game is that we actually want you to destroy the Earth. We let players experience the lethal consequences of global warming arising from excess investment in carbon-fueled industries. In Carbon Warfare, players generate mass carbon emissions, raise the global temperature, and ignite catastrophes to try to wipe-out the largest cities on Earth.
To create a realistically-modeled simulation of the Earth’s destruction, we reached out to our partner environmental economist Dr. Yoram Bauman. Carbon Warfare is powered by an underlying scientific climate equation created by Dr. Bauman, such that players can really see the impact of their in-game actions. By no means do we pretend to be scientifically accurate and Carbon Warfare is a game above all. But by letting players play with realistic parameters we feel they will better understand how different human behaviors and various chain reactions can actually impact global warming. Ultimately, we wanted to deliver a game that provokes greater social awareness around the threats and consequences of global warming to our planet if we don’t change fast enough. Carbon Warfare is a fresh take on delivering this message through a provocative, sometimes satirical, and realistic simulation, so we’re excited to see how players react.
We chose to develop on Unity because of the multi-platform capabilities for both mobile and PC, as well as the unparalleled graphics tools. They enabled us to enhance the look and feel of the world in Carbon Warfare, and deliver stunning visuals of the Earth facing various disasters.
Carbon Warfare is out now on both the Apple App Store and Google Play, so I encourage you to check it out and share your feedback with us on the experience, and how the game has perhaps informed you more about the effects of global warming. Different scenarios and add-ons are being prepared to extend the experience, and your suggestions on those will be important to us as well.
Lydia White