Free play of the week: The Benefits of Life Insurance

By Thorin Klosowski in Indie Games
Monday, May 9, 2011 at 2:00 pm
As a hobby, video games are a rather expensive way to get your entertainment. But that doesn't mean there aren't plenty of good, free experiences out there -- whether you're just short on cash or if you're just looking for a new type of game, freeware and browser-based games are a great way to not spend any money and get a wholly original, albeit usually short, experience. This week we have The Benefits of Life Insurance, a curious little Windows game from Justin Smith.

As a game system, life insurance hasn't been much of a hot topic over the years. That's likely because -- well, what would you really do in a life insurance game? Smith answers that question with a somewhat bizarre little game where you're tasked with keeping a contingency of people alive long enough to buy your wife some nice things.

There really isn't anything more to it, but the combination of a solid, albeit unpredictable mechanic and a curious desire to make more money and suddenly you'll realize a good chunk of time has passed by.


On the screen you'll have a collection of people wandering around and holes in the ground. As a seller of life insurance, your goal is to get people to sign up, which you do by clicking them. The thing is, if they fall in a hole, you have pay out a full claim, which can be a hefty sum, so you'll want to pick people who aren't wandering around near any holes at first -- at least until you have a little more cash in the bank to waste on clearly suicidal people. You can, if you're feeling particularly attached to your pocketbook or a person, close up a hole with a little bit of cash.

As a game, it's a rather weird little experience and chances are you might grow a bit attached to the people over time. There's probably a statement there about the selfishness of saving someone in order to lose less, but when it boils down to it, a good life insurance salesmen should be able to stockpile their own money as well as protect their clients.

A little weird? Yes. But it's certainly worth the download just to see if you have what it takes to make it big in the life insurance world.

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