MOSCOW, Idaho – A University of Idaho game studio is aiming to teach evolution through video games.
Polymorphic Games is the university’s own video game design studio that brings together students in a bunch of different disciplines to design video games that incorporate evolutionary principles.
During the summer of 2016, they have been creating “Darwin’s Demons.” It is a game styled after Space Invaders, but with an attacking swarm that evolves as you play. As you play, thy get harder and harder to defeat.
"That way, you can kind of sneak the teaching in and let people passively learn instead of having knowledge shoved down their throat," said grad student Nicholas Wood.
Every aspect of the game is created on campus. The professors behind Polymorphic Games said that is something unique. Students with different majors apply their skills in real life to make the game a reality.
"When you make video games, you need to tap music and sound and art, design, and computer science," said biology professor Barrie Robison.
The biology students are the ones making sure the evolutionary principles work in the game. They are hoping that Darwin's Demons will not only benefit the gamer, but possibly the video game industry itself.
A basic version of the game is available for free online. Once it is finished, the team is hoping to publish the game on a service called Steam within the next month or two.