American Dreams Combines Social Gaming, Education and International Relations

American Dreams is an educational social game created by developer Nihaoareyou that not only allows users to play in an online university world, but also have access to real life educational lectures from anywhere around the world.

Nihaoareyou, a company that develops educational social games, created the game to foster understanding between the U.S. and China, where American Dreams recently launched in Beta. The Beta version is available in 12 countries total, including Turkey, Indonesia, Brazil and India on Facebook and a Chinese rival to Facebook, Renren. While users play the game, which simulates the American university experience, they can stop and jump into a live video stream of an actual American university class.

Nihaoareyou currently partners with Abilene Christian University and offers courses in English, with plans to expand its curriculum. A YouTube video of a game demo also says that lectures from Harvard, Stanford and Yale are to be offered in the game as well. The game promises not only the live lectures, but video lessons, PowerPoints, a white board, online lessons and flash cards to help the user better her education.

The basic premise is that the user is going to study abroad in the U.S., so, players start out receiving their visa in the airport and immediately arriving to a college town.

On Level 1 of the game, users pick their avatar and where they live — including how much they’ll pay for it from their stock of “money” — and get to decorate their new home. An introduction then explains how the live classes on American Dreams work. Then a user passes to Level 2, finding a job and going to the mall to furnish their new home or buy new clothes are among the activities in which users may participate.

We’ve written previously about how companies like CampusBuddy and Inigral are hoping to take the power of Facebook’s social graph and apply it to the university setting, but no one seems to have gotten the formula just right. Perhaps this combination of social gaming and education will yield new results.