Going to the Frontier and We're Gonna Get Married
By Justin McCraw
From the creators of Facebook crack app FarmVille comes...gay marriage? Zynga, purportedly the largest online social network game maker, launched its newest franchise FrontierVille on June 9. Think of those Oregon Trail games you played in elementary school re-purposed for the 21st century and you'll get the picture.
After arriving at a new homestead, players are asked to perform a series of tasks in preparation for their new spouse's arrival. This includes building your log dream cabin and clearing debris. Upon completion, players are allowed to customize their spouse's gender, name and appearance. Your new partner -- and subsequent offspring -- becomes a second hand on the farm. Finally, our Clint Eastwood and The Duke fantasies come true.
While the language of the wedding announcement is still hetero-normative, the fact that Zynga allows players the option of deciding who to love is heartening. Now if only the rest of America were as open as those on the frontier.
FrontierVille has approximately 7.4 million users, while FarmVille has 64 million, according to their respective Facebook application pages.
-- Justin McCraw