Ubisoft just released a Tom Clancy’s The Division alternate reality minigame named Cash Contagion. The game, based on The Division‘s premise of contagion through contact with banknotes, analyzes your money allegedly based on real data, and tells you how much crap you’re carrying around with it.
By scanning a banknote (for the moment only Euro and British Pounds are supported) or by inserting its value and part of the serial number, you’ll know where it was printed, how long ago, and an estimate on the presence of urine, cocaine, marjuana and bacteria on the surface. Then the site will estimate the risk of contagion.
Below you can see two examples with 10€. The first traveled from Ireland to Italy, the second moved just within Italy. The third is a 20€ banknote from Portugal.
Apparently, all of them were full of urine. Nice.
Touch at your own risk?
Apparently, you shouldn’t take this too seriously. Experimenting with the banknotes in my wallet, all the 10€ I have resulted 18 months old, while all my 20€ banknotes were reported as 24 months old. This is a bit strange, and casts some doubt on the depth of the “real data” used. Further investigation led me to analyze the banknote portrayed below.
The banknote appears on this article from 2010. The site correctly guessed its French origin, that is indeed determined by the serial number, but still reported the age as 18 months. Presumably, unless someone invented time travel and didn’t tell us, this indicates that the “real data” used might just be the average age of a banknote of a certain value.
Technically, I guess that’s still “real data.” Of course, it also throws the value of any calculation the site makes into the recycle bin. Yet, I guess it’s still a funny time waster for a few minutes, letting you know where your money comes from.
You can also see a trailer below.