If the reader clicks the word "cow" then the cows will come.
As promised, I'm now linking the iPad and web versions of Wired's story on Cow Clicker. There are some interesting features of each.
The iPad edition features clickable cows that moo, but the online version of the story really, uhm, sets the moood... it includes a complete Cow Clicker-themed cow clicking game with Facebook integration. So, go try that out. It's particularly noteworthy for being quite deeply integrated into the text of the story, rather than just sitting beside the article.
I guess that makes it a cow clicking game about the aboutness of a cow clicking game about Facebook games. Or something. The result is so completely third-order and epic I can't even begin to describe it. Just go try it.
The novelty of the idea doesn't come out of nowhere: the web game was made by Shannon Perkins, who is Wired's Editor of Interactive Technologies. He conceived, designed, and created the terrific Cutthroat Capitalism game, which we discuss extensively at the beginning of Newsgames. Both Shannon and my Newsgames co-author Bobby Schweizer will be at news:rewired in London this coming February, talking about newsgames.
I'm not sure if Shannon's Cow Clicker game about Cow Clicker counts as a newsgame or not... but maybe so? No matter, it's certainly an unexpected and inspired cowmbination of my recent work.