After weeks of viral speculation, ‘Catarrh Hero – The Struggle to Work’, the latest edition of the successful ‘Hero’ gaming series was launched onto the market last night at a London West End store. Attracted by the promise of a box of designer tissues, a large queue of gamers had gathered by the time the shop was formally opened by Dr Hillary Jones and a bevy of beauties dressed in pleasingly non regulation nursing uniforms.
The game charts the progress of the player from the first hint of a dry throat through to the full blown cold and the bronchial after effects, having to chose the best strategies to remedy the illness and balance the demands of the workplace with the desire to retire to bed with a hot water bottle (available as a Nintendo accessory from £39.99).
The player may select a variety of occupations and complaints to contend with. On the office worker setting, fellow employees will generally mutter ‘wimp’ and avoid you in case you are still infectious; on ‘fashion designer’ colleagues will rally round and suffocate you with empathy; whilst on the ‘wife’ setting no one notices that you’ve been ill at all.
Available in all formats, the WII version boasts several innovations. The remote sinus inhaler which the player is allowed to use after successfully dealing with several tricky diagnostic tests is a hailed as ‘an industry first’, alongside the ‘Nose Barrier’ where the strength and volume of the player’s sneeze is measured via the supplied sensor which can be attached to any tissue or handkerchief.
The new game is designed to appeal to the after school market. But Zak Hughes, spokesman for the games developers, said ‘We believe the game can provide younger age groups with a valuable learning experience related to the work ethic and the real interface with fellow employees.’
Mr Hughes added ‘With the enduring popularity of TV programmes such as ‘Casualty’ and ‘House’, we are hopeful of developing the franchise further in the direction of medicine once we have perfected the nunchuk scalpel.