Dated: 5 July 2010
The Ministry of Information, Communication and the Arts (MICA) Parliamentary Secretary, Sam Tan, launched ‘ASEAN Chronicles: The Legend of the Golden Talisman’ today on the sidelines of the 11th ASEAN Sub-Committee on Information (SCI) meeting. This year’s meeting takes place in Singapore on 1-2 July 2010 at the RELC and is hosted by the Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA).
Drawing loosely upon elements of James Bond, Indiana Jones and The Amazing Race, the educational-adventure themed computer game is aimed at creating interest and awareness about the ASEAN region amongst the youth.
The idea of using computer games to enhance awareness and understanding of ASEAN among the younger generation was first raised at the 8th Conference of the ASEAN Ministers Responsible for Information in Phnom Penh, Cambodia back in October 2004. This goal was subsequently championed by MICA and MDA, on behalf of the ASEAN Committee on Culture and Information (COCI), an ASEAN inter-governmental committee in charge of promoting cultural and information exchanges between ASEAN countries.
Sam Tan, Parliamentary Secretary, MICA said, “There is a need for us to engage the youths through new media platforms, especially with the popularity of social media platforms which utilize addictive flash-based social games. We hope that this game will provide the right mix of entertainment whilst enabling gamers to pick up little nuggets of information about the region we live in through the engaging game play.”
Added Dr Christopher Chia, Chief Executive Officer of MDA, “The objectives of this game are several fold namely;to promote and raise international awareness of ASEAN, its people, places and cultures, to inform and educate youths about ASEAN member countries, to foster a sense of regional identity in the players as they solve a common goal through game play involving ASEAN member countries and finally, to reach out to youths in an alternative yet entertaining way.”
Students from two Singapore schools, Anderson Primary School and Montfort Secondary School, have been active in assisting in the development and testing of the game since July 2009 to ensure that the educational objectives were presented in a fun and engaging manner.
Ms Linda Lee, Head of Culture and Information Division, ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community Department, ASEAN Secretariat said, “The game ‘ASEAN Chronicles: The Legend of the Golden Talisman’ is an excellent way of educating youths within the region about the 10 ASEAN Member States and help build an ASEAN identity which transcends geographical borders.”
The game’s storyline takes the player on a quest to avert an impending metaphysical geological phenomenon that threatens mass destruction and chaos to mankind. Hope hinges on a mythical Golden Talisman that can avert the impending cataclysm. The player is required to save the world by traveling through the ASEAN countries to find pieces of a mythical talisman. The game is available for free download from the ASEAN Media Portal (www.aseanmedia.net), and will also be distributed by the various ASEAN member countries through DVDs to schools and communities.
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Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA)
Formed in 2003, the Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA) plays a vital role in transforming Singapore into a Trusted Global Capital for New Asia Media. MDA spearheads initiatives that promote industry growth in film, television, radio, publishing, music, games, animation and Interactive Digital Media. At the same time, in ensuring clear and consistent regulatory policies and guidelines, MDA helps to foster a pro-business environment for industry players and increase media choices for consumers. For more information, visit www.mda.gov.sg and www.smf.sg.