New Zealand is a unique, visually stunning, place with an interesting mix of peoples in a landscape that is rich with metaphor and history. Tourism is one of its greatest exports, and a vital part of that is the fascination visitors have with the Maori culture, people and ideas.
A common idea in the Maori way of thinking is their respect of others, a fierce pride combined with humbleness, and a connection between the land, the people and the environment.
The ‘Maori Pa’ game concept has been developed to encompass these ideas, educating people about Maori culture and language in a sensitive and Maori-centric manner. The game is designed to impart important Maori values that people can use in their daily lives (such as working as a community, sensitivity to the land and the value of things other than financial).
The game setting is round 600 years ago, and limited to a range of players, who can choose roles ranging from very active (such as being a warrior or a lead actor in a quest) to support (such as preparing food, weapons or tools). Each quest is time-limited but may run for several weeks.
Within the game there are certain challenges, tasks to complete, items to collect, places to go, people to meet, actions to undertake, stories to hear, and so forth. These are defined by the story-machine which provides the narrative and physical boundaries of the game world. At various places, you will encounter characters to interact with, hear real stories told by elders about the landscape and its people, learning about actual events that took place there, be that mythical or in ancestral memory.
Progression is measured by the amount of Mana the player accumulates. This Mana is an accumulation of respect, history, humbleness, service, bravery, knowledge, and many other aspects. In the context of this game, each and every game element, character and place will have Mana. Activities in the game will increase or decrease your personal Mana. Gain enough Mana to progress onto the next level of the Pa.
The game playability and narrative, along with the characters, content, artistry and such are the most important parts of the game. These define not only the world in which the players must act, but drive the activities forward, at the same time offering the player great freedom within this narrative envelope.