MSU-Developed Game Teaches Kids to Avoid Landmines

A game in development at Michigan State University was designed to teach Cambodian kids, and others around the world, how to avoid landmines and other unexploded ordnance (UXO) that might be scattered about their countries.

Undercover UXO is funded principally by a $78,000 grant from the U.S. State Department and via a partnership with the Golden West Humanitarian Foundation. The game is intended to run on the One Laptop Per Child $100 computer.

The State News offers a description of the game:

Players use directional buttons to guide a character, accompanied by a pet, through a series of Cambodian landscape pictures in search of food. Players must avoid land mines and other artillery, called unexploded ordnances, or UXOs, by following warnings…

The Golden West Humanitarian Foundation backed the game as a solution because informational pamphlets were deemed “ineefective.”

Development team leader Corey Bohil added, “It should be fun enough that a kid wants to play this game over and over again … and get enough repetition that when it transfers out into the real world, it translates into actual changes in behavior.”

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