This Game Wants to Prove That You Don't Know What Soup Is

This article originally appeared on VICE Brazil.

In Polish, the word soup is zupa. It can refer to any food cooked in milk or even in blood, like the czernina, a classic Polish soup that's made from duck blood and clear poultry broth. If that sounds strange of unappetizing to you, it might be due in part to the fact that "soup" is a particularly hard word to define. Hear me out: Is broth a soup? In Portuguese, we have broth, sauce, and cream—but would you be able to identify the difference between the three dishes? Does it even matter? It's difficult to find a definite answer, which is why Dr. Stefano Gualeni—an Italian philosopher, architect, and game designer—has created a video game to better understand why "soup" as a concept is surprisingly hard to pin down.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

but really, are cup noodles soup or pasta?

Cup noodles are noodle soup (tang mian).

Well, I suppose the literal translation of “tang mian” is “soup noodles”. But I think the English way to say it is “noodle soup”.


Well, we do not give a hoot about what a well-designed video game should be or should do.

A part of my inner self lifted its head from the pillow of stress-screams and ostrich-yearning and cheered very quietly.

I don’t know any thing, my guy.


Oh, I remember playing the first build of this game! It used to be a multiplayer interactive fiction piece about sandwiches, and it was called “The Waypoint Forums for the Entire First Two Weeks of May.”


Seeing this game show up is sorta wild. This whole idea of the relationship (or lack of relationship) between usage and formal definition is something I’m interested in and have even brought up on this forum a couple of times when there’s been a discussion where definitions come into play and … now it looks like there’s a game I might be able to point to whenever I want to try to explain this idea better.

For a moment I didn’t catch on to the joke and got really excited that people might be making new games in Seltani, hah.

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