Saturday, 15 September 2012

gamified research

My day job includes working with people who research on flocking, social networks, and other complex interactions of groups of agents.  A while back, some of our researchers decided to see if their work could be brought to the public through "gamification".  Over the summer, the University has funded a couple of interns to work on this, and now ComplexCityApps have just released the first game for the Android: Floqua.

As the game's website says:
Find all of the lost fish in each level and guide them to safety in the castle. The tricky part is keeping them in your flock. Swim too fast and you'll leave your fish behind. Watch out for the predators: they're hungry!
The game is now available through Google play.  I confess, I've spent more time than I should herding fish.  It's easier than herding cats, which is part of my day job...

In addition to being a fun game (we hope!), it's educational (we also hope!).  You can simply play the game.  But, if you want to know more, there are pointers to the science behind the app.

And the developers have bravely been keeping a blog, so you can also dig down into some of the game design process, including effort to make sure the colour-coding of fish types is accessible to colour-blind players.

Okay, I'm off to try the next level, which has two rather hungry predators trying to eat my fish...

hiding from predators...

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