We know that kids could sit and swipe at their screens playing mobile games for hours. Whether they’re racing to collect coins, flinging birds to avoid pigs, building up worlds, or trying to fit Tetris pieces just so, they’re a generation that is intuitive to how to play mobile games. But what if they were also able to learn how to make mobile games themselves? Thanks to BitOGenius’ Pixicade, now they can.
The set comes with three activity books for kids to draw their own mobile games. Kids can use the specific marker colors — also included in the kit! — to draw obstacles, moving parts, objects to collect, and more in order to create a variety of different types of video games. Whether the games are swipe-to-race, brick-breaking, or any other type, the booklet walks kids through how to build each one and teaches them what each part does. They’ll learn the inner workings of coding video games in a simple, attainable, and approachable way.
Once kids have drawn their game, they can then snap a pic and upload it into the Pixicade app. The picture of the drawing they created turns into a mobile game, complete with moving parts. Pro tip: When kids are taking pictures of their game page, help them to make sure that they are just capturing the elements they want in the game. Any extra things on the page, as well as any surrounding table area, will be included in the game screen if it’s in the picture. Kids can then try out their game and see if it’s successful. If it is — great! They can continue to play.
If they are seeing any issues with their games — their dinosaur avatar is too big, there’s not enough room to jump between a platform and a fire obstacle, the goal is too small, etc. — kids can edit the different aspects of the game right in the app, so there is no need to redraw the whole thing. Kids can also share their games with friends — then their friends can download them, edit them, and send them back, or just play them as is.
Some of the best tech toys lend to “healthy screen time,” or screen time that is educational and fulfilling for kids. It’s a tough task to pull modern kids away from screens — so it’s great when you find a way for them to engage in screen time that’s also beneficial. Pixicade mixes digital and physical play, so they’re getting a full hands-on, creative, IRL design experience, that then translates to the on-screen experience with which they are so familiar.
Pixicade has all of the gaming and drawing fun that kids love combined with all of the STEAM skill-building that parents love. Overall, this game-coding kit is a huge win!