Desert Bus is a video game created by Penn and Teller for the PC, Sega, and the 3DO. Back in the mid-90s the magical duo were creating some video/computer games for Absolute Entertainment based on their wacky magic act. As part of a larger game called Smoke and Mirrors, they created a mini game called Desert Bus. The game was a response to then attorney general Janet Reno's campaign against violent and objectionable computer games. Penn and Teller felt almost any game has some element of violence or objectionable content. They set out to create the least offensive game possible. A game devoid of both violence and material someone in America could find objectionable.

They came up with a game that requires you to drive a bus from Tucson, Arizona to Las Vegas, Nevada. You had to drive the bus on a desert road. The road never curved. The scenery never changed. The engine wouldn't let you drive the bus faster than 45 mph. The only element of game play was the bus pulled slightly to the right, so you had to always correct the bus's steering. You couldn't crash the bus either. There was nothing to crash it into. If you went off road the bus simply slowed down and came to a stop. The game was played in real time. If you really drove from Tucson to Vegas, the trip would take you eight hours. The game mirrored this.

The game had a score ticker. When you started the game the score was at 000000. After 8 hours of playing, you would make it to Vegas. Upon entering Vegas your score increased by 1. Upon entering Vegas you were given the option to pull a double shift. That is to say you could now drive the bus back to Tucson. This would earn you another point.

A beta was shown at a couple electronic gaming conventions. Some booth bunny was given the job of driving the bus. People would crowd around the gamer and watch and watch and watch, expecting something to happen. Nothing ever did, of course.

Penn, Teller, and Absolute conceived of a promotion where they would give a lavish prize to the first gamer to attain 100 points. That is to say, play 800 hours of Desert Bus. The winner would be driven on an actual desert bus from Tucson to Vegas. On the bus he'd be feted by show girls, music, food, booze, and what not.

Oddly enough, the game was never released commercially. Recently a torrent of the game has turned up on the net along with several screen captures. Google and you'll find it.

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