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Goodbye PolUK
#1
It was with some sadness that I recently noticed that PolUK was coming to a natural end and I thought I would pop in to say goodbye. This game was hugely influential on me between 2005-06 and made a big difference to my outlook on politics in general. I'd go as far as saying it is because of this game that I don't get swept away with one extremist madness of another that we see in UK politics today! Yet at the same time, I sadly no longer have time to play and have not done so in well over a decade.

I can see the same in the current player base and what I really wanted to say is that this is a testament to the game not of its failure but of its success. A lot of these forums suck people in and they waste their lives away in front of a screen. PolUK was never like that because what this game did was it took people with raw intelligence in and it sent out intelligent people with ambition. PolUK has been the training ground for a number of councillors and prospective Parliamentary candidates, it has improved the English language skills of people from all over the world and it has been a place where young people can get away from the pressures of life to just be themselves. And the end product is always someone more articulate and more ambitious with a life too fulfilling for forum based gaming!

On top of that, PolUK kept the flame of political engagement alive during an era of increasingly depressing managerialism. The Blair years were to many boring and offputting but this game, through its historic rounds, reminded people that there was room for ideas and room for debate. I don't like the extremism in politics today, but I am delighted that more people are engaged and in some small way games like PolUK influenced that.

What makes me sad is that PolUK won't shape the next generation. Whether the game could be saved is contentious and I agree with the AVs in the end that it's just not sustainable. Beyond a more contemporary round I can't think of anything anyway.

In which case what I would conclude with is this. PolUK helped all of us; it's our responsibility now to use those skills for good in the real world. Goodbye and good luck!
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