Futurestates is a collection of digital shorts from up-and-coming filmmakers sharing a "vision of American society in the not-too-distant future". In this episode, "Play", director David Kaplan and game designer Eric Zimmerman (Gamelab) imagine how we might play -- or try to escape -- video games years from now:

"Play imagines a not-too-distant future where video games have become indistinguishable from reality. These fully immersive games are nested inside each other like Russian dolls — each new game emerging from another and connecting backwards with increasing complexity.

One moment, a player is a Japanese schoolgirl embroiled in a pillow fight with her girlfriends — and the next moment, the player has suddenly morphed into a scandalized state senator defending himself against a throng of angry reporters.

Synthetic experience competes with real experience as dream, fantasy, and memory begin to collapse into each other. Identities become elastic as the players consecutively inhabit completely different genders, ages, and ethnicities."

The film and its games hope to provoke questions from gamers like "Who are the players?", "What is the purpose of these games?", "What is the point of winning?", and "Where is it all leading?". It's an episode that looks to use video games as a metaphor for the human search for meaning and identity.

You can watch more digital shorts from Futurestates: Season 1 here.

[Via fort90]