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St helens-schools-recycling-game-report-v1.0

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The report describes a workshop run as part of the St. Helens Local Area Partnership Climate Change Project. The workshop was held on the 25th January 2011 and began the process of designing a …

The report describes a workshop run as part of the St. Helens Local Area Partnership Climate Change Project. The workshop was held on the 25th January 2011 and began the process of designing a recycling game. The workshop was facilitated by Paul Ladley from games-ED (http//www.games-ed.co.uk) and officers from St.Helens Council.

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  • 1. St Helens Primary Schools (Local Area Partnership for Creative Learning): Recycling Games Design Workshop 25th January 2011Author: Paul Ladley (pladley@games-ed.co.uk) Tel: 0161-427-8684 www.games-ed.co.uk Copyright games-ED (The Pixel Fountain Ltd - www.pixelfountain.co.uk)
  • 2. Recycling Game Design – Schools WorkshopSummaryThe following report describes a workshop run as part of the St. Helens Local Area PartnershipClimate Change Project. The workshop was held on the 25th January 2011 and began the processof designing a recycling game. The workshop was facilitated by Paul Ladley (games-ED) andofficers from St.Helens Council.BackgroundSt. Helens Council has been working with twelve schools over the last two years in a Local AreaPartnership for Creative Learning (LAPfCL). The LAPfCL have developed a Climate Change ActionPlan (CCAP). The CCAP looked at pollution around the world and stated key tasks and objectivesthat ought to be delivered over the next three years in St. Helens. Objective 3 looked at recyclingand asked the question „can more be done?‟ The joint second priority task was to „Look tocommission an educational recycling console game‟. The first stage of developing a game is tocreate a design and a specification and that was the purpose of the workshop.The WorkshopThe workshop was split into three parts:1. An opening presentation and quiz.2. Each school generated an initial idea.3. Two ideas were chosen and more detail was added to them.The Presentation / QuizThe opening presentation looked at different types of games and what makes a good game. Mostimportantly the golden rules of design were explained:o Need - Think about what the player wants (educational, fun, challenge and information).o Platform - What gaming device should the game work on (internet, console, computer or mobile phone)?o Money - Consider the cost of developing the game.o Time - How much time will the game take to develop?The presentation was mixed up with quiz questions. A round of applause to Nutgrove MethodistCommunity Primary School won the quiz.Copyright games-ED (The Pixel Fountain Ltd) [2 of 7]
  • 3. Recycling Game Design – Schools WorkshopInitial Game IdeasThe five ideas:1. Polluto – Polluto and his army are trying to stop you from making the world a better place. You only have a certain amount of time in each level. Can you solve the problems and find the green portal in time?2. Walk around the World – Your character visits different parts of the world to solve environmental problems. As you try to solve problems such as removing litter, people create more!3. Eco Factory – This is a game of mini games such as eco Pac Man. When you successfully complete a mini game, you earn part of an eco factory. When your factory is complete it will create eco products such as recycled pencils.4. Eco Busters – You move through rooms in houses with your pet Munchie solving eco problems. As you and Munch (who can eat rubbish) solve problems you earn credits that enable you to buy more items such as another Munchie.5. Eco Party Planning – Every party creates a mess! But if you can clear up and recycle everything properly you earn money. With the extra money your next party can be even better, but if you don‟t earn money then your next party is going to be rubbish.The VoteEach school was asked to choose its favourite and second favourite idea. They couldn‟t choose theirown. All the ideas gained votes, but two ideas had the most support: Polluto and Eco Busters.Detailed DesignAfter a break for lunch and quick football game, two teams wereformed to add more detail to the chosen ideas. Each team workedin three groups to look at game play, graphics for the characters,scenes and menus and finally ideas to keep up the gameinteresting. Some of the ideas from games not chosen in themorning were included in the detailed designs.PresentationThe teams presented the two games. The game idea was explainedfirst, followed by the graphics and finally ideas to keep up thegames‟ interest.The final VoteEach pupil was asked to vote for which game they would most liketo play. The ballot was secret but the pupils were asked to identifythe teams they had worked in. This last point was important because the votes were multiplied bydifferent numbers, so that each team had the same chance of being chosen. Pupils were instructedthat if the team number was not written on the vote then it would not be counted.The votes were counted. One vote was not submitted and another vote did not identify the teamand was ignored. And the winner was … both teams, it was a draw.Copyright games-ED (The Pixel Fountain Ltd) [3 of 7]
  • 4. Recycling Game Design – Schools WorkshopConclusionBecause the vote resulted in no clear decision, the facilitators from St.Helens Council and games-ED decided the fairest way to proceed was to write two technical specifications. Thesespecifications will then be judged by schools from the Local Area Partnership for Creative Learningwho were not present at the workshop.To ensure that the game is developed the following will need to happen:o Money to develop the game will need to be found.o An individual / design team will need to create a more robust design for a developer to work with. This will make the development costs cheaper, but will mainly ensure the ideas from the workshop are not lost in translation.Participants and FundingSchools from Local Area Partnership for Creative Learning:o Allanson Street Primary Schoolo Merton Bank Primary Schoolo Nutgrove Methodist Community Primary Schoolo St.Marys & St.Thomas Church of England Primary Schoolo St.Theresas Catholic Primary SchoolOfficers from St. Helens Council:o Grace Tatlock - Education Link Officero Tish McKee - Housing, Health & Education Link Officero Bernie Parr - LAP Managero Cheryl Boland - Environmental Assistanto Towera Mpore - Climate Change & Sustainability Co-ordinatoro Mark Wilkinson - Recycling Liaison Officero Alison Bayliss - Graduate - Climate ChangePaul Ladley from games-ED (www.games-ed.co.uk) who produce innovative, teacher-ledcollaborative games based learning.Funding from:Merseyside Waste Disposal Authority and Veolia Environmental Services.Copyright games-ED (The Pixel Fountain Ltd) [4 of 7]
  • 5. Recycling Game Design – Schools WorkshopTechnical Specification – Polluto GamePlatformNintendo DS (although could also work as web based game developed in Flash).Game Type“Platform”IdeaPolluto – Polluto and his army are trying to stop the player from making the world a better place.The player only has a certain amount of time in each level. Can they solve the problems and findthe green portal in time?o The player‟s character runs through various scenes – scrolling backdrop.o They collect items and avoid obstacles.o Polluto and his army chase them and fire weapons at them.o The player needs to get to green portal within a time limit in order to progress to the next level. o The player needs to collect eco points / objects (such as solar panels) to unlock the portal. o Checkpoints exist in the level, so that if the player fails they can return to the last checkpoint and not to the beginning of a level.o Easter eggs contain hidden items that help you speed through levels (power-ups, such as roller skates).NavigationWeb based – Cursor Keys – Up (jump), Down (duck), Left (left) and Right (right).Nintendo – Navigation Pad – Up (jump), Down (duck), Left (left) and Right (right).Levelso 10 levels (web) or 25 levels (Nintendo DS): o First 5 themed around different countries (Global). o Second 5 themed around rooms in a house (Local).o Each level lasts about 5 minutes (web) or 15 minutes (Nintendo DS).o As the player succeeds in a level, the items they collect interact with the theme. For example, level 1 is set in Paris and the player needs to collect solar panels to light up the Eiffel Tower.o Boss battle at the end of the game.Mini GamesNoneStory Sequenceso At the start of the game Polluto says he will defeat the player in their attempt to make the planet a better place.o At the end level: o Success: For example, light up the Eiffel Tower and Polluto says he will defeat you in the next level in New York (Mwaaahhhh)! o Failure: Polluto laughs at you.Copyright games-ED (The Pixel Fountain Ltd) [5 of 7]
  • 6. Recycling Game Design – Schools WorkshopTechnical Specification – Eco Buster GamePlatformWeb based game developed in Flash.Game Type“Platform”IdeaThe player moves through rooms in houses with their pet Munchie solving eco problems. As theyand Munch (who can eat rubbish) solve problems, they earn credits that enable them to buy moreitems such as another Munchie.o The player character runs through various rooms within houses in a street.o Ghouls chase the character.o They solve problems (turning lights off, remove rubbish) and avoiding traps set by ghouls. o Solving problems can make the game harder. Turning the lights off means more ghouls appear. The ghouls set more traps for the player and create more eco problems such as dropping more rubbish. o Rubbish is collected in backpacks that are colour coded to be the same as St.Helens bins.o Pictures talk to the character to give tips and eco information.o As the player proceeds through the levels they can earn smile tokens. They can use these to buy a new Munchie. Each new Munchie will enable the player to get rid of more rubbish, so they are in effect a power-up. o The Munchie and other power up items such as backpacks can be bought in a shop. Different styles of backpacks exist for boys and girls. o Levels have to be done in a certain time scale or the ghouls will put everything back to how it was at the start of the level.o Easter eggs (spiders) contain hidden items and mini games. Secret levels can be accessed through the bookcase. Some Easter eggs are bad and can mess the level up, fill up Munch or steal the player‟s smile tokens. Gems help you into the trophy room.Navigationo Cursor Keys – Up, Down, Left, Right – Hold down to run.o Space bar = Jump.o Mouse to solve problems.Levelso 4 houses with 7 levels (rooms). Can the player make the whole street eco-friendly?o Each level lasts about 5 minutes.o Each Level gets scarier.Mini GamesMini games earn the player smile tokens that they can spend in the shop. They include:o Whack a rubbish – bat your rubbish to your Munchie.o Recycle rampage – Pac Man with smile tokens.o Plant the plant – Plant as many plants in your garden as you can in a set time.Copyright games-ED (The Pixel Fountain Ltd) [6 of 7]
  • 7. Recycling Game Design – Schools WorkshopGraphic Design Eco Busters – Option for the game‟s logo design. Eco Busters Game: Munchie design. Polluto – Option for the game‟s logo design. Polluto – Option for the game‟s logo design.Copyright games-ED (The Pixel Fountain Ltd) [7 of 7]