When Kids Want to Learn
May 20, 2014
Last December, I was bestowed with the opportunity to get feedback about a children’s game I helped make, Fractionauts, from the game’s ideal demographic: 4th grade students! Last week, I was again graced with an opportunity to return and gather more feedback. Within that lapse of time, a new team of students forked (Git jargon for “made a copy of”) Fractionauts and improved it in pretty much every way possible.
Their fork’s improvements include, among other things
- Totally overhauled graphics (with a theme evocative of NES/Super NES games).
- Expansive rendering optimizations that make smooth animations possible, even on the XO-PC.
- Sounds including ambient music and feedback/effects.
- Infinite auto-level generation, while maintaing support for pre-defined levels.
- Removed dependency on GTK.
- Improved scoring.
The kids enjoyed the game in its prior state, but they loved it in its current form. Through the magic of open-source and RIT’s IGM courses, we have created a game that helps kids learn an important skill, that they don’t despise playing. It even helps me learn!
I’m bad at fractions.
The following screenshot comparison alone should sum it up nicely.
Check out Fractionauts on GitHub!