WOW. That's the first thing I have to say. When we launched our Kodu Game Lab Challenge last spring in partnership with the Joan Ganz Cooney Center for Digital Media and the Mercy Corps, we really didn't know what to expect. But the results were fantastic. Hundreds of creative young students from all over the world made really fun and surprising videogames, many of them using the latest features available in Kodu Game Lab which the Kodu team added specifically to support this contest.
We asked these kids to create games inspired by the theme of water, our most precious global resource. Students competed in two age brackets: 9-12 and 13-18. And here are our winners!
1st Place ($3,000 Prize)
Destroy the Pollution by Kjartan Örn Styrkársson, Iceland
The player has to destroy the sinister factory that is polluting the world, while finding life-giving water pools along the way.
“The message I want to send is that we need to be careful not to pollute our water because it is so important to all life. I actually won 1st place in the local Icelandic competition as well, so I'm extremely happy that I won the international first prize in my age group. If you work hard and strive to do a good job, anything can happen!”
2nd Place ($2,000 Prize)
Fight for Water by Adam Husain, Oman
The robot ruling class believes the lower-class robots are too weak and powerless to deserve their fair share of water. In a series of races and contests, the player must demonstrate that all are created equal.
“My game shows the importance of sharing precious natural resources such as water in a fair manner.”
3rd Place ($1,000 Prize)
Pollution Destroyer by Karim Bastami, Egypt
This fun series of contests has you competing against rival robots to sweep up the most pollution.
“I just wanted to eliminate pollution to live in a better healthy world.”
Peppy Waters Inc. by Nicolás Martín Zorzini, Argentina
This epic and charming adventure offers a sprawling landscape with multiple quests, secrets, and puzzles to solve.
“I had to research water-related problems around the world and how to combine that information with a game. I found out a lot of alarming facts that I thought everyone should know, so I didn't just learn about game programming but also got into a worldwide issue.”
Pollution in Water by Mr. Alongkorn, Thailand
Across a series of floating islands, you solve clever puzzles to restore water to the world.
“This challenge is a chance for more practice and more experience. Try to join this! You can get inspiration, creativity, and commitment to make good work.”
Clean the Waste by Anh Vo, United States
In this challenging and well-structured game, the player defends a village from polluting factories.
“I'm thankful to Imagine Cup for this opportunity because it will motivate me to do better in the future and invest more time and effort into my projects.”
All of these students, and so many more, really put their hearts and their minds into their projects for this contest. I want to thank everyone who entered, as well as their teachers and parents. And stay tuned -- the Kodu Game Lab Challenge will return in 2014!
John Scott Tynes Imagine Cup Competition Manager Microsoft Academic Programs