Posted: Jan 7, 2013 6:51 PM by Jen Fenter - MTN News
An educational video game that re-traces the journey of Lewis and Clark is now one step closer to becoming a reality after reaching a fundraising milestone.
The creators of "Meriwether: An American Epic" enlisted the help of funding website Kickstarter to reach and surpass their $35,000 goal. When the funding deadline arrived, the project had raised $44,489.
Project producer and Great Falls resident Carol Bronson says the funds will help fill out the game to include more historical monuments along Lewis and Clark's expedition.
Bronson says while it may be hard to imagine, the video game is just a different medium for learning: "It's quite impressive, it is the way to engage younger people in learning, and to read the comments of the 1,400 people that have backed the project, they're excited to learn about Lewis and Clark. And these are gamers."
The game is still in the creation phases, but Bronson expects it to be released in November 2013.
Here's an overview of the game from the "Meriwether" website:
1803: Thomas Jefferson more than doubles the size of the United States in a controversial deal with the French government. Trouble is, only the sketchiest maps of North America west of the Mississippi exist. Rumors swirl that several Indian nations have forged alliances with the British, the Spanish, and even the Russians. Some leading scientists even believe these primeval lands may be home to the mastodon, the megalolynx, and other Ice Age behemoths. But no one will know until someone with the courage, mettle and skill-set to make the perilous voyage ventures forth and returns to tell the tale. That person is you.
In Meriwether, you play as Captain Lewis, the man President Thomas Jefferson selected and specially trained to accomplish this mission. You'll join forces with your long-time friend and former commanding officer, William Clark, and with him you'll form the Corps of Discovery, a party of hand-picked soldiers, interpreters, and hunters to whom you'll trust your life every day of the 28-month journey.
The Corps of Discovery's goals are to:
- find an all-water route across North America, if one exists
- draw accurate maps of your voyage
- establish peaceful relations with as many Native American nations as you can
- identify plants and animals unknown to Western science
- make it back alive!
It's an impossibly dangerous mission. The odds of even surviving the arduous trek are slim at best. But if you do succeed, your voyage will change the course of history, not just for the fledgling United States, but for the entire world.