An­te­bel­lum El Do­rado house fea­tured in road-trip game

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - ARKANSAS - MICHAEL SHINE

EL DO­RADO — El Do­rado is now fea­tured in a new mo­bile game fo­cused on a road trip from New York to San Fran­cisco.

The game, Matchino, which is avail­able on An­droid and will be of­fered on iOS in the next month, is a match-three style game where the player is prompted to line up three or more of the same ob­jects.

The idea was in­spired by film di­rec­tor Sam Az­zarano’s road trip across the coun­try a few years ago, when he was work­ing for a non­profit or­ga­ni­za­tion.

“I got to see a lot of ar­eas of the coun­try that not many peo­ple see when they’re go­ing on a trip be­cause it was a road trip,” he said. “I was just amazed by how much lo­cal cul­ture there is around the coun­try with the dif­fer­ent kinds of peo­ple around there. I re­ally wanted to show­case that in this game.”

Az­zarano, who is part of Em­mer­sion Stu­dios, which re­leased the game, said the team was in­spired to share some of the beau­ti­ful or his­toric lo­ca­tions around the coun­try.

He said they started by draw­ing a road across the coun­try and look­ing for places to put bends, par­tic­u­larly places of cul­tural rel­e­vance.

El Do­rado is the only city in Arkansas to be in­cluded in the cur­rent ver­sion of the game. Other nearby lo­ca­tions have been in­cluded, such as Mon­roe, La.; Lafayette, La.; and Natchez, Miss. Each level in­cludes a hand-drawn image of a sig­nif­i­cant site.

The El Do­rado level is fo­cused on the John New­ton house, Az­zarano said, stat­ing that it is a pre-Civil War man­sion that’s been turned into a mu­seum that “of­fers a glimpse into An­te­bel­lum life and of­fers his­tor­i­cal re-en­act­ments.”

Az­zarano said the team de­cided to in­clude the New­ton House be­cause of its his­tor­i­cal sig­nif­i­cance in the area and its ar­chi­tec­ture.

“We thought it looked beau­ti­ful and it had an in­ter­est­ing story to tell.”

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