Verisimulators

"Games Stupefyingly Like Reality"

A verisimulation is a game that attempts to recreate it's subject on such a detailed level, it's hard to consider it a game. (Or fun for that matter.) The genre was coined by Penn and Teller in the unreleased Sega CD game "Penn & Teller's Smoke And Mirrors" to describe the minigame Desert Bus. The name verisimulation is a pun based off the word verisimilitude, which in the literary sense, is the likeness or semblance of a narrative to reality, or to the truth.

List items

  • The minigame "Desert Bus" coined the genre as it would task you to drive a worn down bus from Tuscon to Las Vegas in real time.

  • The Railworks series brings a mind-numbingly intense level of detail to an arguably mundane profession. That is when they aren't introducing zombies for some unknown reason.

  • The Head Coach series, (which was mercifully relegated to extra mode status after 2009) allowed you to live in the exciting world of professional football, sans the whole playing football nonsense.

  • Take the last entry, make it the other football, make it very European, and make it inexplicably super popular. Now you have Football Manager.

  • Fate of the World puts you into the role of the head of a global organization that is trying to save the world. Think XCOM, except instead of aliens, you're battling global warming. Also, everyone still hates you.

  • Farming Simulators have the unique distinction of being able to put "As fun as watching grass grow!" on their box and have it actually considered a plus for the game.

  • This entry only counts if you're an ant.

  • Cities In Motion is a game that puts you in charge of a city's public transit system, a role that would take maybe ten years to get in real life. Much like real life, you'll constantly be underfunded because suburbanites hate people who don't own cars.

  • Your first sign that something's gone horribly wrong here is that your chainsaw isn't a "weapon". It's a "vehicle". Scratch that, the first sign something is wrong is the graphics that look like something out of those graphic design school commercials.

  • Cart Life fills the long neglected "existentialist dread" niche that verisimulators have lacked for so long. Build your small business or more likely, fail terribly and be forced to sustain yourself on stale hot dog buns.

  • A call center simulation so realistic that it got it's creator fired from his actual call center job. Recreates the true experience of a call center through poor pay, high turnover, difficult customers, and god why did I decide to do this for a living.