Pandemic board game creator Matt Leacock is encouraging the game’s fans to play his game… and fight ebola by donating to Doctors Without Borders.
Leacock, and his friend, Jocelyn Becker, have set up a website where players can list their Global Pandemic Parties and donate to the nonprofit organization online. They hope to raise $100,000 by Jan. 31.
Today, Leacock announced that he is also giving players a little something: three new roles — Party Host, Celebrity Activist, and Gamers; and a new scenario for the game — Out of Africa.
The connections between the game and real life haven’t gone unnoticed by the media or by gamers.
One Board Game Geek forum member said, “I felt like such an awful human being when the reporters are talking about the Ebola outbreak, and all I could think of was ‘Ya know, I really should get around to buying Pandemic.'”
Pandemic has been a huge success. Despite being released in 2007, it was No. 1 on The Dice Tower Network’s 2014 People’s Choice Awards, and it is the No. 4 family game on BoardGameGeek.com.
The game is played cooperatively, which means the players work together to fight four viruses. The viruses spread. Fast. If the players aren’t successful, humanity is wiped out.
Pandemic has two expansions which change the gameplay, On the Brink and In the Lab. This year, two other versions were released, The Cure, which is a dice game, as well as Contagion, a competitive game where players are the diseases.
Z-Man Games has two more expansions, Legacy and State of Emergency, scheduled to be released in 2015.