Team members Lien and Clay ran Humans vs. Mosquitoes at this year’s DC Games Festival held in West Potomac Park (just south of Lincoln Memorial and west of MLK Memorial). It was a pretty nice backdrop with the Washington Monument peaking out from behind the trees, and we even got a wave from Air Force One (it felt like it was within arm’s reach). I guess Obama – or at least his crew – approves of HvM! It was a pretty hot and sunny day (felt like almost 100 degrees) so we are very appreciative of all the players who came out and ran like determined humans and mosquitoes. You’ll see Adam from Obscure Games got so into the game that he literally passed out in the grass when the game was over!
In this version of the game, the mosquito breeding grounds are actually blue and red disposable tablecloths pinned down with plastic yellow tent stakes. We also added some equipment for ease of play to represent human “health” and mosquito “eggs”. Like all previous version of the game, the humans are trying to remove eggs (represented with tennis balls which are easy to see) from the breeding grounds without getting bitten. Each human must wear a flag football belt with just 1 flag, which represents that he has some health left. If a mosquito grabs a human’s flag then that human must sit the rest of the round out (each round is 30 seconds). Each human must have at least 1 remaining unit of health to play in the next round (a Human team referee monitors human health levels). The mosquitoes are trying to deplete the humans’ health by “biting” them or are trying to strengthen their team by laying eggs in the breeding grounds. In each round a mosquito can either bite or lay but not both. If a mosquito wants to lay an egg, he or she must hold an egg and then stand on the breeding ground where he or she wants to lay the egg until the end of the round. After that the egg is laid and it’s fair game for the humans to try and remove it!
Everyone had a lot of fun playing HvM and we had a great time running it! Thanks DC Games for having us!
AboutThis game was developed in Fall 2011 by a team of graduate students and faculty at Yale University and Parsons The New School for Design for the Red Cross Red Crescent to use in the field to educate children about vector borne diseases and climate change. This game showcases innovative teaching tools in the field. Playing the game will allow children and policy makers alike to understand and engage on an emotional level with complex and abstract concepts of climate change and disease transmission.
Humans vs. Mosquitoes by Clay Ewing, Lien Tran, Mohini Freya Dutta, Ben Norskov, Eulani Labay, Sophia Colantonio, Lauren Graham, Vanessa Lamers, and Kanchan Shrestha is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.