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Thursday, June 23 12:00 AM ET

Dance Dance Evolution Game
Created for Monkeys

By Brian Briggs

San Diego, CA - For years many video games have featured monkeys as characters (Donkey Kong, Super Monkey Ball), but until now there haven't been any video games for monkeys. Konami has released a primate version of its popular Dance Dance Revolution game called Dance Dance Evolution.

Dancing Monkey"The primate market is underdeveloped, especially with video games," said Konami Director of Marketing, Bo Stenson. "Monkeys have been taught how to use money. With disposable income they'll want to be entertained, and we know how monkeys love to dance."

The creators expect the game to be played by the bored primates after hours at the zoo, and by the growing population of pet monkeys.

"From the movie The Jungle Book, we know that monkeys want to be like us, and what's more human than looking like an idiot playing a video game? Also, this game should develop the monkey's coordination, so they can become more humanlike," said Stenson.

To encourage evolution, the game discourages monkey-like behavior. For instance, monkeys lose points when more than two extremities are on the floor at once. They are rewarded when they put more coins in to continue their game.

One problem developers dealt with in prototypes was how to remove poo flung by angry monkeys who lost. The solution was a modified windshield wiper system that worked well.

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Long lines for the game at the Animal Arcade at the San Diego Zoo have resulted in officials ordering two more units.

"It's fun to watch," said primatologist Sarah Hough, "You can see the evolution in progress. The chimps will play the game then they'll come over and hit on me. It's so humanlike."

The new game is not without its detractors. One Fundamentalist Christian organization has picketed animal arcades calling for the game to be called Dance Dance Intelligent Design. Konami officials have called that idea "stupid."

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