BP Gulf Oil Disaster’s ‘Thrills’ and Spills Foretold in 70s Board Game

July 6, 2010

(ChattahBox)—An owner of a small toy museum in England, was surprised to find disturbing parallels, between today’s Gulf oil disaster and an obscure board game sold in the 70s, named “Offshore Oil Strike.” The game was endorsed by BP, sporting its logo on the cover, with a drawing of a massive offshore oil rig, exclaiming “The thrills of drilling, the hazards and rewards as you bring in your own.”

Alan Goldsmith, the owner of the toy museum found the game’s cover art “spooky” in light of the ongoing oil spill in the Gulf and oil rig explosion that left 11 workers dead, and a catastrophic environmental disaster:

“The mint-condition game, made by Scottish company Printabox, was donated by a private collector to The House On The Hill Toy Museum in Stansted, Essex. It was very rare and ‘obscure’, said museum owner Alan Goldsmith, who added: ‘The parallels between the game and the current crisis… are so spooky.”

‘The picture on the front of the box is so reminiscent of the disaster, with the stormy seas, the oil rig and an overall sense of doom,” added Goldsmith.

The description of the game provided by BoardGameGeek, also provides a prescient view of the dangers of offshore oil drilling:

“Two to four players compete at exploring for oil, building platforms, and laying pipelines to bring the offshore oil back to the player’s home company. Players take on the roles of either BP (Hull), Amoco (Bergen), Chevron (Rotterdam) or Mobil (Dieppe) in their quest for oil. As with other games focusing on offshore oil exploitation (e.g., Omnia’s North Sea Oil), there is also the risk that storms will reduce production on, or eliminate, one’s oil platforms. The first player to make $120,000,000 in cash is the winner.”

And the real kicker? One of the hazard cards reads, “Blow-out! Rig damaged. Oil slick clean-up costs. Pay $1million.”


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