A Game Design Project from the G4C Student Challenge
By Benjamin, Dianshi, Joshua, and Tammy
Middle School Students from Mouse @ Stephen A Halsey JHS 157 Q
About this Project:
Our game is a big city in the middle of the never ending plains. Here people can come together and be united by their character and not by anything they can’t control. This game was created to make a more accepting community and make people have fun with friends while learning about diversity and its importance. You can build teamwork skills with friends and hang out with each other. We have a small complex where most of the minigames take place and a park with representation for every biome. Perhaps the most impressive feature is the center tower that is inaccessible until all the minigames are completed. A beacon shoots through the center and the minecart train will take you around it. There is even a functional elevator to take you to the top.
Equality is a very important part of games as well as just life in general. We found that video games can sometimes be very white and not have very much representation of many different people. Many video games especially adventure games and shooter games are very geared towards males and females are rarely represented outside of being supporting characters. Many older games could be edited to make you have an option to play as any gender and have a lot of character customization in order to make a more immersive experience for the player. That way the main protagonist could be any gender or race and the player would really feel like the main character. Unfortunately people who have disabilities are very excluded from gaming. Playing games is very hard when you can’t see or hear what you are doing. However there are things you can do to cater to those players so they can also enjoy games. Games that are based on sound and including labels when it is required to see colors can be a big help to blind and colorblind people. Having sound to visual effects like the ones seen in the incredibly popular Fortnite can help deaf players navigate around. Some games especially older ones can include some offensive things such as stereotyping extreme violence and racism. It is important to eliminate those features from the equation in order to make games friendly for everyone. All in all it is very important to include equal amounts of representation from all races and genders. This creates a more immersive experience for the player and it puts your game in a very positive light. Inclusive people are more creative people!
Since the game is very open and not very easy to understand at first glance it may seem challenging. The following is a guide with instructions to help you on your adventure. w,a,s, and d keys are to move forward, left, down, and right. Shift will make your character crouch and double tapping the W key and holding down will cause you to sprint. Left clicking destroys a block while right clicking places one. To open up your inventory is e and to open settings is escape. Depending on whether you have an external mouse or not, the scroll wheel is to change inventory slots and without one it is the number keys to access different slots in your inventory. We have a few different minigames that all are fairly straightforward. Hints for the quiz one can be found across the map but otherwise they are just straight teamwork and mastery of the controls. Remember to poke around after completing all the minigames and memorising the signs for a fun surprise!
In conclusion we hope that you enjoyed and were able to complete our game. All our levels are possible to be completed by a solo player but it is much better with two or more people. It was fun making this project and I hope you have just as much fun playing it. Diversity and building a better world is very important and adding educational gaming is a great and fun idea.
Feedback from the Judges:
Will Turnage 👏 Director of Technology at I&CO — Emoti-Con Judge
This is a super interesting idea. I like the idea of several mini-games in this world, each with their own meaning, and having them unlock the big tower in the middle once completed. I also think it's really great how some of the levels work better when you team with someone. I can't wait to see the finished project.
Sarah Judd 👏 Curriculum Manager at AI4ALL — Emoti-Con Judge
I appreciate your commentary early on about building more inclusive games. What did you do in this game to make sure it felt inclusive? I love the connection between different minigames, and the collaborative nature of the puzzles. Curriculum design often feels like this - you piece together different parts to come to a whole, and build in collaboration. I also love the teamwork aspect!
Shaneequa Shyrier 👏 Digital Marketing Manager at Facebook — Emoti-Con Judge
Very cool game design! I love the emphasis on creating a more inclusive and equitable world and the DEI (diversity, equity, inclusion) tactics you included in your project. I also appreciate the detailed instructions around how to play the game and the video demo. I can't wait to see it come to life!
Feedback from the Community:
Vidhi 👏 a Middle School Student from Queens, NY
I like how unique your project is, as there is a collection of games, making it more interesting. THis games looks very engaging and unique.
👏 a Middle School Student
This world is great, although the video shows it in working progress. I believe it will become a grand and amazing place to play mini-games and be.
angel 👏 a Middle School Student from nyc
it looks super fun and there is just so many things you can do
valentina 👏 a Middle School Student
i like how colorful it is
Ahmed 👏 a Middle School Student from NYC
I really like the concept of this world and the inclusion of mini games within it.
Isabella 👏 a Middle School Student
This game is very inclusive and enjoyable. It has a lot of minigames that are nice