BitOGenius introduced the concept of using art to introduce the concept of video game design to kids through its original Pixicade product. Now, with Pixicade Quest, kids can level up by making their own multilevel video game.
With this version of Pixicade, kids can draw their video games using the four books included in the kit. The books teach kids the concept of game design and game theory. Each book chapter can be a level of a video game, so it teaches kids the concept of sequencing, patterning, and long-form storytelling, too.
There are more than 100 examples and dozens of activities and drawing pages to follow. Plus, kids can get started right away with the included game design stickers; map-making stickers; and five washable markers in red, blue, green, purple, and black. The stickers are great for younger kiddos or kids who want to succeed quickly or are not as confident in their drawing skills, as the stickers can stand in for a specific object or character instead of a freeform drawing.
Once your budding game designer has drawn their scene on a piece of paper (like a sheet of printer paper) with obstacles, characters, and more, they snap a picture using a smartphone or tablet in the free downloadable Pixicade app. Kids will see their image in the app, but it will now have interactive moving pieces that kids can play as a mobile game, like completing mazes or shooting basketballs.
The app is compatible with Android devices 5.1 and higher and iOS 8.0 or later and is available for Amazon Fire tablets. If you have an Amazon Kids device, you must download the Pixicade app through the Amazon parent portal. All in all, you will need an up-to-date device and an internet connection to use the Pixicade Quest kit.
While many parents want to get kids off of tablets and devices, this is an opportunity to let kids use what they love, but teach them how the games they play on their devices actually go from concept to creation. It takes the angle of using art as a method of introducing kids to game design and game coding without having to learn coding language like Scratch or Java. It is a great way to start the coding journey this way. Plus, your kiddos may have a greater appreciation for the apps they play — and be inspired to create their own!
Pixicade Quest is best for kids ages 10 and up, but kids as young as 8 can cultivate their creativity with assistance. Homeschooling families may find this a great addition to a STEM curriculum, and schools may find Pixicade products to be the start of a new after-school club activity!
You can find Pixicade Quest at Rite Aid, True Value, Ace Hardware, Fred Meyer, Booksamillion, Blain Supply, and Peyton’s — and other Pixicade versions on Amazon!