Educational iPad game Planet Challenge released
September 24, 2014
ESERO Ireland
The Netherlands Research School for Astronomy (NOVA) has released the educational iPad game Planet Challenge internationally. The app is now also available in English, Swedish, Spanish, German and French. In the game, kids are taken on an exciting scavenger hunt passing the eight planets of our Solar System, dwarf planet Pluto and our Moon. The Swedish version of the game Planet Challenge was presented on friday 19 September by astrochemist Ewine van Dishoeck (Leiden Observatory, Leiden University) at the award ceremony of the prestigious Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award 2014. The game can be downloaded for free for three days. The educative game Planet Challenge (Planetenreis in Dutch) takes children from the age of six on a journey through our solar system. The player travels from planet to planet to collect objects and take them along in a rocket. These objects are necessary to successfully complete the assignments on the eight rocky and gas planets, dwarf planet Pluto and the Moon. The child learns about the characteristics of the planets and distances in our solar system while playing. The goal of the mission is to bring the ice from Pluto back to earth! The Swedish version of the game Planet Challenge, Planetresan, was offered at the award ceremony of the Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award 2014 on 19 September 2014 in Gothenburg, Sweden. Awardee professor Van Dishoeck is enthusiastic about the educational game: “Through this game, young children become aware of our fascinating universe in a playful way. They learn about our Solar System by a fun game with a unique design.” The Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award is awarded annually to a scientist who made a breakthrough discovery in physics. Van Dishoeck receives the award for the identification of the molecular pathways that allow the formation of stars and planets from dilute gas and microscopic dust particles. Planet Challenge was developed by Game Oven commissioned by NOVA and Moon Uitgevers with a contribution from Marijn Franx (Leiden Observatory, Leiden University). The translations were possible thanks to a contribution from Ewine van Dishoeck (Leiden Observatory, Leiden University). The game was awarded third prize in the Meester App contest of the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science. The jury on the game Planet Challenge: “It is a real scavenger hunt, you learn by doing. There is a team behind it with great understanding (…) And the design is exceptionally beautiful.”