Thursday, 19 February 2009

Gaming for Good ™

KZero regularly produce useful charts that detail the growth of virtual worlds. They now have a chart that outlines the range of virtual worlds aimed at five- to ten-year-olds, available here. Not sure why a perennial favourite, Club Penguin, isn't listed. The chart indicates that Barbie Girls now has 17 million registered accounts, but that is eclipsed by Pearson Education's Poptropica at 40 million accounts (the games are good, apparently). With so many worlds flooding the market, it isn't easy for new ones to make a splash, but Elf Island has. This virtual world links the gaming to 'real-world' non-profit projects and attempts to inculcate the values of good citizenship. As the producers state on the site:

Through Mirrored Gaming, kids learn about non-profit projects and, by completing a GoodQuest, they help real people, animals and the earth.
- Planting a tree in our virtual world causes trees to be planted in the real world.
- Building a home in our virtual world causes real homes to be built in the real world.
- Helping sharks in our virtual world helps sharks in the real world.

I like the concept of Mirrored Gaming™ , as it explained on the Elf Island Blog (practising good online and reflecting that good offline) - but wonder why the producers of the game felt the need to trademark the phrase - as they have also done with the phrase 'Gaming for Good ™? Let's hope they had good intentions for doing so.

3 comments:

DrJoolz said...

yes strange club penguin is not listed .. especially given they report on it here as being a contender for second life:
http://www.kzero.co.uk/blog/?p=2279

Jackie Marsh said...

interesting rise of Veoh in that chart you point to. I wonder why - 'cos it offers more personalisation that YouTube?

Hannah said...

Club penguin is listed in the age group of 10-15. Please see here: http://www.kzero.co.uk/blog/?page_id=2537

But I find their charts are confusing. For example, I don't understand whether 22m for Club penguin refers to the whole number of registered users (which I believe it should include kids below 10) or only users who fall in the range of 10-15.