Educational game development received a boost this week in the form of a $10,000 grant that was awarded to the Institute of Play by the newly-formed AMD Foundation.
The grant will be used to create a social impact game community as a part of “Gamestar Mechanic,” an educational game package that the Institute of Play publishes in conjunction with E-Line Media. This article will describe the AMD Foundation and its Gamestar Mechanic competition.
Gamestar Mechanic is an educational program that aims to teach young people about various aspects of game design by allowing players to publish their own game ideas and also review those published by other members of the associated web community, and even to act as game testers for other players. The aim of the program is to utilize video games to highlight important social issues around the globe. The program is aimed at a target audience of kids and teens aged 13 to 18 years old, and is predicted to reach thousands of players and aspiring young game developers.
The AMD Foundation was set-up by manufacturer Advanced Micro Devices (AMD). AMD’s product range includes graphics cards and various server products, and the company would like to promote gaming as something that possesses practical value beyond just entertainment. AMD's signature education program, “AMD Changing the Game,” aims to educate teens about global issues such as world hunger, energy conservation, environmental issues, climate change, and poverty. In short, the AMD Foundation is supporting game design that engages youngsters in important social issues.
Gamestar Mechanic invites players to participate in their monthly game design competitions which are themed around a different social issue each month. The first of these contests is already up-and-running, and the theme for this month's contest is energy. AMD hopes that participants will learn about energy consumption, and the risks and costs involved in ensuring that the world has enough fuel and energy. Kids and teens are encouraged to use their new-found game design and game development skills to create a game that is centered around the month's theme of “the use or the production of energy,” and that will teach players lessons about energy awareness and conservation while also providing an enjoyable gaming experience.
The judging panel for this competition and subsequent competitions will be made up of several professionals in the field of game development and game design from E-Line Media, and also of representatives from both of the non-profit organizations Games For Change and Global Kids; both organizations world leaders in using digital media and games to highlight important global issues. The winner of the first competition will win an AMD-based laptop.
Gina Kraft wrote the article for Game Shastra. Gina is a supporter of Game Shastra specially, their game design, game programming, and game development areas.
Gina Kraft wrote the article for Game Shastra. Gina is a supporter of Game Shastra specially, their game development,game design, and game testers.