Abortion and video games may seem an unlikely combination, but two Texas women are working to create a choose-your-own adventure game to show people how it feels to end a pregnancy in their conservative state.
The game, Choice: Texas, will be available free online, and will demonstrate how difficult it is to have an unplanned pregnancy, choose to terminate it and seek medical treatment in the Lone Star State — a state that has recently toughened its laws to make abortions tougher for women to obtain.
In A Youtube video promoting the game, creators Carly Kocurek and Allyson Whipple stated, “Texas women seeking abortion face considerable obstacles, even if they are financially stable … those who can afford abortion still have to deal with mandatory ultrasounds, biased counseling, long waiting periods, parental consent requirements for minors and contentious legislative changes that could cause a number of Texas clinics to shut down.”
The game is still in development, and the creators, both professors, have started an IndieGoGo campaign to raise the funds to complete the project and build awareness.
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In an interview with Persephone magazine, Whipple stated, “I would hope that this game would put a more concrete, human face on the issue, that players would not see these women as evil or shameful, but understand the difficult – often impossible – situations they’re in, and the difficulties they faced in making and achieving their choice.”
Players may choose from five female characters and various difficulty levels. Character choices include a 19-year old bartender who still lives at home, a woman living below the poverty line and a 35-year-old attorney who is not ready to have children with her boyfriend.
The anti-abortion community has, unsurprisingly, expressed contempt for the game and its message. Said Cortney O’Brien of TownHall.com, “Whatever happened to Mario Kart Racing or Sonic the Hedgehog … Shame on Kocurek and Whipple for developing a game that misleads kids into thinking pro-life legislators are the villains and abortions are worthy causes for which to fight. Abortion restrictions should not invoke ‘empathy,’ but celebration.”