VIDYA BOOKS: the book, as reimagined by video game makers is a Kickstarter project that is being spearheaded by someone I met while I was at Microsoft. Joe Booth and I have had several conversations about the intersection of games and education. The problem with a lot of educational games is that they are not fun. The problem with a lot of fun games is that they are not really educational. Joe’s vision for some time has been to create games that are both fun and educational. He’s put together a team and this is a step in that direction. This project starts with reading.
A lot of reluctant readers are also avid gamers. The hope here is that this sort of book will attract some of these readers and get them hooked on the idea of reading. At least it may get them reading something and we know that reading is a gateway drug to learning.
There is only a short time left for the kickstarter part of this project. They are hoping to reach a stretch goal to allow them to make their book at different reading levels. If it means anything I have contributed some of my own money to this project. I’m hoping to help find more supporters as well. Take a look at their kickstarter site for more information - http://kck.st/15Q4Mlz
Vidya Books is an interactive book experience delivered as an iPad/iPhone app. It’s a novel you play with – it’s a book that is a game.
Vidya Books leverages the best elements of Choose Your Own Adventure storytelling, classic adventure games, traditional novels, and modern action games to create something fresh and magical.
Upon opening the app and selecting a book, you’ll watch as the story materializes on screen, one word at a time. You interact with the words as they appear -- your interaction directs the main character. You swipe the screen, touch words, and manipulate the device -- and that moves the story forward!
In a Vidya Book, you matter! The story unfolds in front of you and around you and you control the pace. In a traditional novel the story has one path - it doesn't matter if you're paying attention or not. Here, your attention is integral and your choices matter.