Evolving planet, archaeology and science in a game

Scientists of the CaSES research group, from the CSIC’s Institución Milá y Fontanals, have collaborated in the creation of the videogame “Evolving Planet”. The game has been developed in the frame of the Recercaixa Simulplay project, led by the scientist Xavier Rubio, at the Barcelona Supercomputing Center.

Image of the game.Simulplay is an outreach activity of the SimulPast research Project from the CONSOLIDER INGENIO programme, which is coordinated by Marco Madella from the Institución Milá y Fontanals (IMF). The aim of the project is to develop an innovative and interdisciplinary methodological framework to model and simulate ancient societies and their relationship with environmental transformations.

The SimulPlay project and the resulting videogame aim to bring together the society at large with the work of a scientific project in a playful way. The goal is to make scientific work and reasoning more accessible. As a result, the video game “Evolving Planet” was launched a few days ago. This game guides the player through the process of human evolution in a fictional world. The game has been created by a team of experts in computation, social sciences and archaeology led by X. Rubio at the Barcelona Supercomputing Centre.

While playing, the players have to use the same methodology and techniques that scientists apply in their research. The scenario of the game is a planet distant 38 light-years from the Earth, where the remains of a humanoid species have been found. The player’s role is that of an archaeologist that investigates why this civilization became extinct, and in doing so will reconstruct its history.

The player has to apply and understand concepts that scientists use in their day-to-day research to study the human past, such as cooperation and resilience, technological development, the use of violence or of cultural influence, etc. The settings of the videogame were inspired by the SimulPast project and involve situations such as climate adaptation or the expansion to new lands.

“Evolving Planet” has been funded by the programme RecerCaixa, of the Obra Social "la Caixa". It can be downloaded for free (iOS and Android versions).

To download Evolving Planet: http://www.evolvingplanetgame.com/index_es.html


Simulpast: http://simulpast.imf.csic.es/

Watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hSuFno-MZGM