RED Hearts: America 2049

Am2049 RED Hearts are guests posts on I Heart Daily from the authors of RED: Teenage girls in America write on what fires up their lives today. Today's RED Hearts post is from Zulay Regalado, 22, of Miami, Florida, who sings the praises of a video game with heart:

I enjoy zombie slaying and alien hunting as much as the next gamer. But I wouldn't say I'm the best at it. Simply put: In the cyber-game food chain, I am bait.

So, when I discovered America 2049, a Facebook-based alternate reality game that launched this month, I was surprised at how my previously non-existent skills quickly took over. My mission, all set in the year of the game's title, is to lead my team of agents on an intense search for an alleged terrorist (played by Harold Perrineau of Lost). To my even bigger surprise, I did not suffer a tragic, level-1 death, as I have in every other game I've played, but was simply able to “recharge” my depleted “energy” by digging for clues on the game's futuristic search engine.

The best part about America 2049 is that it incorporates existing human rights issues along the way, so it's as fundamentally eye-opening as it is entertaining. The game is headed by Breakthrough, a global human rights organization that uses interactive media and pop culture to raise social awareness.

In America 2049, you're faced with making “high-stakes decisions involving some of the most pressing human rights issues of our time -- racism, human trafficking, mistreatment of immigrants, and more,” says Mallika Dutt, president and CEO of Breakthrough. This is a game with true global reach, one in which players, Dutt adds, can “reaffirm the values of dignity, diversity, and democracy.”

Check out the trailer below.

And if you spot me -- age 60! -- on the streets of future-America, say hi.


  RED Hearts guest poster Zulay Regalado is an author of RED: Teenage girls in America write on what fires up their lives today, which is out in paperback.