• Imagining the apocalypse of The Day Google Street View Stood Still
08.26.14

Imagining the apocalypse of The Day Google Street View Stood Still

If you're like me, you're someone who has a sneaking suspicion that Google will be our benevolent overlords by 2020. Google maps is tracking your every move. The company recently became armed with robots. And Google Street View has apparently figured out time travel technology (kind of).

When Google decided the earth needed panoramic mapping—requiring cars, boats, and tricycles to patrol streets across the globe with cameras—most of us responded by saying, "HEY! I can see my house from here!" Google Street View has become such an integrated and embraced technology that news organization like The Guardian actually have designated positions entitled "Google Street View specialist."

So, really, even if Google doesn't use their time-traveling robots to stalk us, they've become our overlords in other ways. Through sheer dependence. As this Onion segment saliently puts it, Google could shut down Gmail (or any of its services) at the flip of a switch, on a whim, only to "bring you to your knees."

Google could shut down Gmail (or any of its services) at the flip of a button, on a whim, only to "bring you to your knees." 

Imagining the apocalypse after a Google-catastrophe is exactly the concept of The Day Google Street View Stood Still. The trailer below sets the "not unimaginable" scene, as "a virus born in the depth of the Internet shut down Google Street View and kicked millions of users out of their routine lives. Riots, cruel violence and total anarchy on the streets were the result of the day Google Street View stood still."

So, obviously, top priority in this Google-pocalypse is to save the celebrities (because they're not gonna save themselves, right). You must scour a total of ten Google Street view 3D spaces in search of objects emitting sound. The game requires headphones, so that the player can track down the object across these virtual spaces. It is surprisingly difficult, and timed. The first level entitled OMG I FOUND A PHONE! adds another layer of panic to the mix, due to the fact that the phone in question rings endlessly and is the standard iPhone ring tone. So, have fun feeling like you're missing a slew of some very important, persistent calls.


The Day Google Street View Stood Still re-contextualizes the panoramic street view experience we've all come to accept. In the process, you remember how truly odd this experiment into virtual traveling and 3D mapping really is.

Seriously, when did these things become normal?

The game promises to have several celebrity cameos (including Ronald McDonald, from the looks of the trailer). Netro, the creative agency that created The Day Google Street View Stood Still, used Web Audio API to integrate their game into the Google street view stage.

You can go forth and save the internet (and our benevolent overlords) on your browser for free.