Swinefighter

Swinefighter, by Jude Gomilla and Immad Akhund, is a Flash game that tasks players with "destroying" swine flu viruses.

The game, which was released about a week ago, is the latest example of a growing genre called "news games"--titles that are created quickly after significant news events and spread virally around the world on social media sites like Facebook, MySpace and Twitter.

Swinefighter was created by Gomilla and Akhund in one night after the swine flu outbreak.

Many of the games stretch the limits of taste and are often considered controversial, but they attract huge audiences as well.

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Photo by: Heyzap / Caption by:

Killing viruses

As the Swinefighter header indicates, players have killed off more than 14 million viruses. Each time a player kills a virus in the game, it adds to that total, meaning that in the week since its release, players have played enough times to destroy more than 14 million of the pig-faced viruses.
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Photo by: Heyzap / Caption by:

Double Bird Strike

In Double Bird Strike, by Dominic Tocci, players play the pilot of an airliner that has had its engines knocked out by birds. The goal is to land the plane safely in a river.

The game was obviously meant to leverage the attention that came when US Airways flight 1549 was taken down by birds and landed safely in the Hudson River.

Many news games, while attracting millions of players, have no advertising, since the designers don't want to be seen as profiting from tragedy.

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Photo by: Dominic Tocci / Caption by:

Hero on the Hudson

Hero on the Hudson is another game based on US Airways flight 1549 that tasks players with trying to land a plane safely after its engines are disabled by bird strikes.
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Photo by: AddictingGames / Caption by:

Sockandawe

When former President George W. Bush was attacked in Iraq by an irate journalist wielding shoes, it inspired at least seven different games based on the event.

Perhaps the most popular of those was Sock and Awe, by Alex Tew, which tasked players with hitting Bush fictional shoes. Tew eventually put the game up for sale on eBay, and a company called Fubra bought it for just less than $8,000. But Fubra contends that it made its money back in 48 hours by putting ads in the game.

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Photo by: Fubra / Caption by:

Bush's Boot Camp

Bush's Boot Camp is yet another news game based on former president having shoes thrown at him by an Iraqi journalist.
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Photo by: Enterprise / Caption by:

Bush Shoe Throwing Game

Not all news games have clever titles. Bush Shoe Throwing Game is yet another based on the shoe-throwing incident, but some think it was the best of those games because it incorporated actual photographs from the event.
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Photo by: Flashgressive / Caption by:

Bail out Brown

Bail Out Brown is another game from Sock and Awe creator Fubra. The game is similar to Sock and Awe, except that instead of trying to hit Bush with shoes, players must try to hit British prime minister Gordon Brown with wads of money.

The game is based on common British discontent with the financial bailouts in that country.

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Photo by: Fubra / Caption by:

Britney Wigged Out

In Britney Wigged Out, another game from Double Bird Strike creator Dominic Tocci, players must try to place a wig on the head of a constantly moving Britney Spears-like figure.

The title, which was Tocci's first news game, was based on Spears' much-publicized shearing of her blond locks.

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Photo by: Dominic Tocci / Caption by:

Made Off

In the game Made Off, players try to manage their own Ponzi scheme.

The game, which has yet to be released, is from Cellufun. It is meant to leverage the news of Bernard Madoff's forthcoming sentencing for bilking investors out of tens of billions of dollars.

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Photo by: Cellufun / Caption by:
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