Google Earth is an excellent representation of our earth. You can live without playing games on it. However, Google Earth-based games increase the enjoyment factor.
You may use your mouse to rotate the virtual globe and have a lot of fun globetrotting from the comfort of your recliner. With air travel becoming less enjoyable, it’s a good idea to make some ticketless journeys now and again.
Google Earth gives us a bird’s eye view on lots of things which we wouldn’t have seen in our entire lifetimes. Like the Nevada crop circles or the fantastic news of the mythic Loch Ness sighting.
Google Earth is the virtual face of a very real world. So, it’s not surprising that it has become a playing arena for lots of fun and games. Most of the free Google Earth games are based on the geographic power that Google Earth brings to our browsers and desktops.
Google Earth games are hardly launched with the kind of fanfare and media blitz that typify the genre. So, where do you go hunting for free Google Earth games?
The Google Lat Long Blog is kind of the official voice for Google Geo products, but there’s hardly any Google Earth games related information there. But there’s the unofficial Google Earth Blog which is a treasure trove of tidbits on the subject. My first steps into the Earth’s gaming zone were through the links laid down here. Take a look. Multi-player games like GEMMO or GE Football are always worth a round.
If you like the lighter side of Google Earth, join the Google Earth Community. You may be interested in the Fun and Games discussion topics.
Everyone is familiar with Google Earth’s Flight Simulator. If you don’t, you can read Leon’s post about it here.
Then there are those you may not have tried yet. Here are six examples:
Earth Contest [Broken URL Removed]
Earth Contest is a free multiplayer travel game that you may play with your pals. The site refers to it as a “armchair travel game.” In this virtual universe, you compete against The GameMaster. You may play the mystery game (Who Killed Gary Egerson?) or the trivia game (Entertainment & Gossip Trivia).
In the first, you begin with a certain number of Earth Contest cash. The game is played via the Google Earth app. The goal is to use clues to get from one area to another. You may assist others with hints or even mislead them along the road. And you hire an aircraft to transport you from one point to another.
The Trivia game also involves answering celebrity trivia questions and moving from one area to the next based on the answers.
Tina addressed it as well in her piece Google Earth: Cool Resources and Plugins.
PlanetInAction features two games, one of which takes you to the heights of space and the other to sea level. Both may be seen in the browser using the Google Earth plug-in.
Lunar Lander simulates the adrenaline thrill of Apollo 11’s moon landing. You get to fly the Eagle spacecraft manually, exactly as Neil Armstrong did all those years ago. He had a limited quantity of gasoline, but you had a limitless supply. Are you a more skilled pilot?
Ships puts you in command of your own cruise ship, tanker, or river barge. You get to be the captain and steer the ship through several of the world’s picturesque coastal sites.
Sea-seek.com features a submarine simulator (among other options) that allows you to conduct shoreline surveillance off the shores of California, Gibraltar, or Greece. You may also take the sub and dive deep into the Mariana, Milwaukee, or Romanche Trench.
You will be in charge of monitoring a control panel and setting items like speed and flying controls. You may fly a Cessna or a helicopter over the waters to imitate fly-bys.
GEWAR is a gigantic multi-player online game that can be accessed via your browser if you have the Google Earth plug-in installed. The game has a slew of rules and restrictions that must be observed. GEWAR is about assembling your own armies using any resources you have available. The goal is to capture cities all across the globe. Each city has a value, and each player’s overall value determines his place on the scoreboard.
Geos are the money of this online universe, and there are several activities you can engage in to acquire them and pay your army. You may even buy a nuclear and demolish a city in a single blow. Armies are set against one another, and it might be a struggle.
Where On Google Earth is a geography game played online. Pictures from across the globe are shared, and you may guess where they are in the comments area.
Each contest lasts one week, and you may receive the solution from any source. Get them correctly and you’ll be in the leaderboard.
Google Earthing is a similar “guess the correct answer from the picture” game based on Google Earth.
Google Earth games may not immerse you in the same way as Avatar-style immersive experiences can in many high-end games. However, if you want to blend instruction and entertainment, Google Earth is a fantastic tool. All of the internet talk about Google Earth indicates that the mashup of Google Earth and gaming applications is still in its early stages. These games are also about promise that has yet to be realized.
That’s for later; for now, let’s turn on the blue globe and go around the planet, trying them all out at least once.
Which is your favorite Google Earth game?
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