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Making Monkey Business of the Campaign Trail

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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BANANAS HTTC Between the phony candidates, the shrieking pundits, and the caucusing, our current political process often resembles nothing more than a bunch of chickens running around with their heads chopped off. Now, Alex Seropian, the man responsible for developing Xbox's wildly popular Halo franchise, is trying to capture exactly that sentiment in video game form. His latest offering, Hail to the Chimp, is being billed as a "comedic look at politics through the eyes of a motley crew of animal candidates all vying to earn the title of President of the Animals."

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You can get a feel for the game's aesthetic here, but think of it as what would happen if The Colbert Report created a multiplayer video game. (Colbert and the game's parent company, Gamecock Media, actually have a marketing agreement together.) Despite the fact that Seropian and his crew started developing the game more than three years ago, there are more than a few similarities between the fictional characters and today's crop of candidates and loudmouthed newscasters. "It's striking how often things ring true without any conscious parody," he says. "We didn't have to change a lot of the things candidates and pundits actually say on the campaign trail to make them funny."



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