Hampshire: Southampton Solent University graduate develops life saving game

A new road safety app designed by a Southampton Solent University graduate could revolutionise the way educational games are used in schools while also helping to save lives.

After graduating in 2006, former BA (Hons) computer and video games student Paul Arnold set up Lapin Logic with other Solent graduates to develop educational games for 7-11 year olds.

He has designed a game that teaches primary school children how to safely cross the road and, following successful trials by the States of Jersey Police and two primary schools, the 3D app could be rolled out across the UK and Europe .

Arnold, who came up with the idea while working for the police, said: “We are trying to make educational games that are as fun and challenging as the mainstream ones.  The game is set on an island and has purposefully been made cartoon-like, without being too abstract – children need to be able to identify with the game and see the similarities between the make-believe and real world.”

Using the teaching method kerb-Craft the player is cast as either a boy or girl and starts the game outside the front door of the players’ home. They are tasked by their parents to run an errand to a nearby shop to buy some something and cross the road.

Before it can be distributed Arnold needs to raise an additional £160,000. Once the finance is in place, the game will be available on PC, Tablet or Smart Phone.

The team also plans to create spin-off games to test children’s cycling proficiency and fire safety.

Arnold and his team will be presenting at ‘The South’s Indie Games Development Conference’ on November 19, a collaborative event between Southampton Solent University, University of Portsmouth and Bournemouth University.

Aimed at providing information, advice and inspiration for those in the games industry looking to set up their own business or work as a freelancer, the conference will also launch ‘South’s Indie Games Network’ –  a collaborative network for games developers in the south.