A Wii game based on Samuel Beckett’s play Waiting for Godot has become the fastest-selling computer game in history. The adaptation produced by Nintendo has shifted two million units in its first week of relase, easily outstripping initial sales of Wii Sports.
The game, designed for two players, offers a series of increasingly futile activities such as arguing, exchanging hats, discussing whether this is the right tree for the arranged meeting, and contemplating suicide - all to ‘hold the terrible silence at bay’ as the advertising strap-line promises.
Godot for Wii is the latest in a series of hugely successful gaming adaptations catering for the new ‘slow gaming’ movement. Slow gaming favours quiet contemplation and existential despair over such traditional skills as manual dexterity and the ability to slaughter thousands of innocent bystanders without compunction. Recent successes have included the 30 million-selling adaptation of Bergman’s The Seventh Seal for Xbox 360 and a series of short Pinter plays for the Nintendo DS, described by it’s makers as ‘the first game it’s OK play in the quiet carriage.’
Health experts have welcomed the latest development in gaming: “We were seriously concerned about the legacy that Wii was leaving our young people” claims Mike Smart, head of the government-funded ’Fit for Life’ campaign. “We were raising a generation that were physically fit but completely unable to contemplate the futility of life and the inevitability of death. These new games change all that.”
Arguments are raging within the gaming community as to whether successful completion of the fifth level of Godot for Wii will finally fetch up the eponymous character. Nintendo are remaining tight lipped about the eventual denouement. “To be honest, I doubt anyone will get that far” shrugged Parisian-born Alain Dubois, Nintendo’s current CEO “most don’t get past level three before thinking ‘what’s the point?’”
Nintendo’s next release, based on Marcel Proust’s epic biography A La Recherche Du Temps Perdu is currently in production and expected to hit the shops in May 2027.