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Has Peter Molyneux lost his mind?

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Peter Molyneux, industry veteran behind games such as Populous, Black and White and Fable recently left his cushy job as the head of…Lionhead and Microsoft’s European studios to form his own start-up, 22 Cans.

The first title from that studio is something of a social experiment. And also makes Molyneux increasingly difficult to take seriously.

Called Curiosity, the title’s supposed to be an examination of how social media can be used within games. The presumably free to play title will present players with a small room containing naught but a black cube.  As each player examines the cube, it’ll chip away in increments – becoming smaller and smaller until it breaks apart.

The catch? Only the player who deals the final blow will be able to see what the cube contains. that player, presumably, will spread word of the mysterious cube’s contents via social media tools. Here’s where it starts getting odd. When the cube’s close to being demolished, in-app purchases will become available to help expedite the process – including a single diamond chisel available for just £50,000; which Google tells me is the equivalent of 645 552.18 South African Rands.

"It’s an insane amount of money," Molyneux said to New Scientist. "This is not a money-making exercise; it is a test about the psychology of monetization."

Yeah…I’m starting to think it’s not the amount of money that’s insane, Peter.

Curiosity will be the first  of 22 Cans’ experimental games, each of which will attempt to examine the psychology of social media in video games.

Last Updated: June 11, 2012

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