[Locative Media] Savannah: a strategy-based adventure game for kids

Savannah is " is a strategy-based adventure game where a virtual space is mapped directly onto a real space".

The Savannah project is an ambitious combination of games technology, mobile computing and innovative approaches to teaching and learning. It aims to support Year 7 children to become collaborative, reflective and imaginative learners in the fields of ecology and ethology. The project brings together the motivation of games play, with the near magical quality of wireless computing to create an engaging world where children learn through a cycle of experience and reflection, of ‘being’ animals and reflecting on animals’ behaviour in their environment. (...) Children ‘play’ at being lions in a savannah, navigating the augmented environments with a mobile handheld device. By using aspects of game play, Savannah challenges children to explore and survive in the augmented space. To do this they must successfully adopt strategies used by lions. (...) The project has demonstrated that mobile technology games can generate high degrees of engagement and enthusiasm in children. (...) In respect of the role of games in education, Savannah has identified that the main motivating feature of games is likely not to be complex graphics, but the establishment of appropriate and authentic challenges.