Created by Macua Studios.


Borders is a political art game created to not only to exhibit video games as an art form but to portray the dangers Mexican immigrants face crossing the border. Players attempt to cross the border while avoiding La Migra (border patrol) and staying hydrated. The place where every player dies is permanently recorded into the video game’s world, represented by a skeleton. Players can see the skeletons of past players which communicates the large death toll of the Mexican Desert.

The game cabinet has since traveled around the world now containing the body of all the players. There are currently over 2500 bodies in the original save file from players in Beaumont, Austin, and Dallas Texas, Los Angeles California, Sheffield UK, along with others.

Artist Statement:

Gonzalo Alvarez’s parents immigrated over to the US and would tell him stories of their journey that inspired this game. Running away from La Migra, staying hydrated, and avoiding “El Mosquo” the nickname for the helicopter, were all things they had to overcome to give him the opportunity to live in America. This game came to be out of wanting others to realize the dangers immigrants face everyday in trying to give a future generation the opportunity to succeed. The artist is a living testament of that statement.


Borders was released on July 4th, 2016  and installed publically on Feb 13th 2017. The game was made in a 7 day long gamejam with two first time game developers, Gonzalo and Jon, and 1 veteran, Genaro.

Gonzalo Alvarez – Artist, Creative Director, Art Direction, Animator, Game Designer

Jon DiGiacomo – Engineer, Level Designer

Genaro Vallejo Reyes – Game,Level, and Sound Designer

Special Thanks to Eric Skiff and Desto for providing royalty free music used for this game!