Team:Calgary/Outreach/VideoGame

From 2012.igem.org

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TITLE=LAB ESCAPE Video Game!|
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TITLE=LAB ESCAPE: Can you ''escape'' the lab?|
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<object style="margin: 20px;" width="640" height="480">
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    <param name="movie" value="http://2012.igem.org/wiki/images/5/5c/UCalgary2012_LABESCAPEv1_8.swf">
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  <param name="movie" value="http://2012.igem.org/wiki/images/5/5c/UCalgary2012_LABESCAPEv1_8.swf">    <embed                 src="http://2012.igem.org/wiki/images/5/5c/UCalgary2012_LABESCAPEv1_8.swf" width="640" height="480">
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     <embed src="http://2012.igem.org/wiki/images/5/5c/UCalgary2012_LABESCAPEv1_8.swf" width="640" height="480">
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<h3> </h3>
 
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<h2>Creating LAB ESCAPE: Our iGEM Video Game on Synthetic Biology</h2>
 
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</html>[[Image:UCalgary2012_FRED_&amp;_OSCAR_Video Game.png|320px|right]]<html>
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</html>[[Image:UCalgary2012_LABESCAPETitleLink.png|500px|center|link=http://igem.ucalgary.ca/game.html]]<html>
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<p>The 2012 iGEM Calgary team ventured into a new territory by developing the video game centered on synthetic biology called <b>LAB ESCAPE</b>. This provided a unique method to educate and entertain the public about the experiments iGEM students perform in the research lab. We focused the game on gel electrophoresis – a common molecular biology technique to separate and visualize DNA from PCR and restriction digests, or to verify purity of genomic and plasmid DNA isolation. Moreover, we incorporated safety procedures to further immerse the user in the research experience. LAB ESCAPE is part science, part fun, and all iGEM.</p>
 
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<hr style="height: 2px; color:#000000;background-color:#000000">
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<h2>Creating LAB ESCAPE: A Synthetic Biology Video Game</h2>
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<h2>Why a video game?</h2>
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</html>[[Image:UCalgary2012_FRED_&amp;_OSCAR_Video Game.png|300px|right]]<html>
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<p>The main purpose for the video game was to <i>educate</i> the user on the steps involved in performing synthetic biology. Often people outside of iGEM ask, “What do you do?” and/or “What do you mean you can see DNA?” We sought to address these questions by creating a user-friendly interface to help people learn about these techniques hence the video game was created.</p>
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<p>The iGEM 2012 Calgary team ventured into new territory by developing a video game centered on synthetic biology called <b>LAB ESCAPE</b>. As scientists, we are often asked, “What exactly do you do all day?” and “What do you mean you can see DNA?” Our video game provides an opportunity to educate and entertain the player by guiding them through a routine experiment used by the iGEM 2012 Calgary team. LAB ESCAPE focuses on gel electrophoresis a common molecular biology technique used to separate and visualize DNA from PCR and restriction digests. We also incorporated basic laboratory safety procedures to further immerse the player in the research experience. </p>
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<h2>From storyboard to application</h2>
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<p><b><FONT COLOR="FF7A00">LAB ESCAPE is part science, part fun, and all iGEM.</FONT></b></p>
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<p>The initial stages were entirely focused on engaging the user in an environment that resembled a typical research lab. We created a script outlining the character’s actions and thoughts as the character started, progressed, and eventually escaped the research lab. We originally wanted to incorporate numerous experiments, but simplified the game (i.e.: gel electrophoresis) to avoid over-whelming the user and keeping the time requirement to a minimal. Once the general story was established, we took the next steps to create the digital version.</p>
 
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<p>LAB ESCAPE was created using Adobe Flash and Illustrator. Members of the 2012 iGEM Calgary team created every graphical image and programming code using Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Flash, respectively.  Note some programming code was modified from open-source code online. From here we designed a ‘point-and-click’ adventure video game platform, where the user collects items required to complete a task. For LAB ESCAPE, these items were materials needed for a gel electrophoresis experiment, which provided a ‘code’ to allow the user to escape the locked lab.</p>
 
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<h3> </h3>
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<h2>From Storyboard to Application</h2>
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</html>[[Image:LABESCAPE-Main.png|320px|left]][[Image:UCalgary2012_LABESCAPE-Lab.png|320px|right]]<html>
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<p>The initial stage in the development of LAB ESCAPE focused on creating an engaging environment resembling a typical synthetic biology research lab. We then created a script outlining the player's actions as they find themselves locked in the lab, progress through the tasks to find the secret code, and (hopefully) escape. We originally wanted to incorporate numerous experimental techniques, but we decided to focus on one common technique - gel electrophoresis. This avoided overwhelming the player with multiple experiments and also kept the time required to an optimal level. Once the scene was set we jumped into the world of video game creation.</p>
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<h1> </h1><h1> </h1><h1> </h1><h1> </h1><h1> </h1><h1> </h1><h1> </h1><h1> </h1>
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</html>[[Image:UCalgary_App_Icon.png|96px|right]]<html>
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<p>After compiling the first build (i.e.: Pre-Alpha), we tested the game amongst our team, received comments, and optimized the game further. These comments helped improved the user interface and increase the content within the video game. Following a couple more versions, we started to share LAB ESCAPE among our friends, family and anyone willing to try our video game for more all-important feedback. By September 2012, we had a completely functional video game and asked if we could premiere the video game to the public at the </html>[http://www.sparkscience.ca TELUS SPARK]<html> science centre here in Calgary. !!!!!!! On September 29-30th we hosted an 2012 iGEM Calgary event for LAB ESCAPE, where several hundred people got to play and learn about synthetic biology – incredible fun!! !!!!!!!! We expect that several more people – scientists and non-scientists alike – will play, learn, and enjoy LAB ESCAPE as our iGEM wiki goes live in early October.</p>
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<p>The iGEM 2012 Calgary team created all the graphical images for LAB ESCAPE using Adobe Illustrator. Adobe Flash was used as the platform for the programming code creating LAB ESCAPE, with some programming code being modified from open-source repositories. With these tools, we designed a ‘point-and-click’ adventure video game, where the player collects items hidden throughout the virtual environment, then complete a task to obtain the code required to open the locked lab door. We even composed our own musical soundtrack!!</p>
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<h2>Can you escape LAB ESCAPE?</h2>
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<p>By using Adobe Flash we were also able to simultaneously make a game that could be run on mobile devices. We are also in the process of submitting our game as an iPad application that can be downloaded from </html>[http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/igem-lab-escape/id566996098?ls=1&mt=8 Apple's iTunes App Store].<html></p>
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<p>In general, LAB ESCAPE is a ‘point-and-click’ adventure. The user begins the game locked in the classroom (which is attached to the research lab) and must find a numerical code to exit. Using your cursor, you must collect DNA tubes to run the gel electrophoresis experiment  (in the research lab). Once ran, the banding pattern of the DNA on the gel must match the assembled gel photo (from collected pieces throughout the two rooms) to provide a number code that unlocks the door to exit the lab.</p>
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</html>
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[[Image:LABESCAPE-Main.png|230px]]
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[[Image:UCalgary2012_LABESCAPE-Lab.png|230px]]
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[[Image:UCalgary2012_LABESCAPEGel.png‎|230px]]
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<html>
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<p>Loved LAB ESCAPE? Tweet about us '''[Twitter link]'''</p>
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<p>After completing the first build of LAB ESCAPE, we challenged members of the iGEM 2012 Calgary team to <i>escape from the lab</i>. After incorporating the comments from our teammates, we then released the game to our friends, family and other willing volunteers to gather further feedback from people with a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences.</p>
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<p>By September 2012, we had a completely functional video game to share with the world. We premiered LAB ESCAPE at the <a href="http://www.sparkscience.ca">TELUS SPARK </a> science centre in Calgary on September 29 and 30, 2012. During the premier event, people of all ages enjoyed LAB ESCAPE and learned about synthetic biology. With our iGEM wiki going live in early October even more people have enjoyed LAB ESCAPE. On October 13, our video game was accepted by the App Store and is FREE to download for iPads. </p>
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<p>
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</html>
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[[Image:UCalgary2012_TelusSparkLABESCAPE.jpg|230px]]
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[[Image:UCalgary2012_TelusSparkLABESCAPE2.jpg|230px]]
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[[Image:UCalgary2012_LABESCAPE3.jpg|230px]]
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<html>
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</p>
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<h2>The Challenge: Can you escape LAB ESCAPE?</h2>
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<p>Now that you have all the background information on the creation of LAB ESCAPE, it's time to see if you can escape! All you have to do is collect all the misplaced items needed to run your gel electrophoresis, find the code and escape the lab. It may sound easy, but science is often easy - in theory.  One hint for those of you that made it this far: remember that many chemicals in research labs can be quite dangerous. Appropriate safety equipment is always required before working on any experiments.</p>
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<p>Finally, while good science should never be rushed, competition often leads to greatness. Keep an eye on the timer and see how quickly you can escape LAB ESCAPE. </p>
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<p>Note: The game is stored on the University of Calgary's server because it is larger than the 2 megabyte limit imposed by the iGEM wiki.</p>
</html>
</html>
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Latest revision as of 03:47, 27 October 2012

Hello! iGEM Calgary's wiki functions best with Javascript enabled, especially for mobile devices. We recommend that you enable Javascript on your device for the best wiki-viewing experience. Thanks!

LAB ESCAPE: Can you escape the lab?

UCalgary2012 LABESCAPETitleLink.png

Creating LAB ESCAPE: A Synthetic Biology Video Game

UCalgary2012 FRED & OSCAR Video Game.png

The iGEM 2012 Calgary team ventured into new territory by developing a video game centered on synthetic biology called LAB ESCAPE. As scientists, we are often asked, “What exactly do you do all day?” and “What do you mean you can see DNA?” Our video game provides an opportunity to educate and entertain the player by guiding them through a routine experiment used by the iGEM 2012 Calgary team. LAB ESCAPE focuses on gel electrophoresis – a common molecular biology technique used to separate and visualize DNA from PCR and restriction digests. We also incorporated basic laboratory safety procedures to further immerse the player in the research experience.

LAB ESCAPE is part science, part fun, and all iGEM.

From Storyboard to Application

The initial stage in the development of LAB ESCAPE focused on creating an engaging environment resembling a typical synthetic biology research lab. We then created a script outlining the player's actions as they find themselves locked in the lab, progress through the tasks to find the secret code, and (hopefully) escape. We originally wanted to incorporate numerous experimental techniques, but we decided to focus on one common technique - gel electrophoresis. This avoided overwhelming the player with multiple experiments and also kept the time required to an optimal level. Once the scene was set we jumped into the world of video game creation.

UCalgary App Icon.png

The iGEM 2012 Calgary team created all the graphical images for LAB ESCAPE using Adobe Illustrator. Adobe Flash was used as the platform for the programming code creating LAB ESCAPE, with some programming code being modified from open-source repositories. With these tools, we designed a ‘point-and-click’ adventure video game, where the player collects items hidden throughout the virtual environment, then complete a task to obtain the code required to open the locked lab door. We even composed our own musical soundtrack!!

By using Adobe Flash we were also able to simultaneously make a game that could be run on mobile devices. We are also in the process of submitting our game as an iPad application that can be downloaded from Apple's iTunes App Store.

LABESCAPE-Main.png UCalgary2012 LABESCAPE-Lab.png UCalgary2012 LABESCAPEGel.png

After completing the first build of LAB ESCAPE, we challenged members of the iGEM 2012 Calgary team to escape from the lab. After incorporating the comments from our teammates, we then released the game to our friends, family and other willing volunteers to gather further feedback from people with a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences.

By September 2012, we had a completely functional video game to share with the world. We premiered LAB ESCAPE at the TELUS SPARK science centre in Calgary on September 29 and 30, 2012. During the premier event, people of all ages enjoyed LAB ESCAPE and learned about synthetic biology. With our iGEM wiki going live in early October even more people have enjoyed LAB ESCAPE. On October 13, our video game was accepted by the App Store and is FREE to download for iPads.

UCalgary2012 TelusSparkLABESCAPE.jpg UCalgary2012 TelusSparkLABESCAPE2.jpg UCalgary2012 LABESCAPE3.jpg

The Challenge: Can you escape LAB ESCAPE?

Now that you have all the background information on the creation of LAB ESCAPE, it's time to see if you can escape! All you have to do is collect all the misplaced items needed to run your gel electrophoresis, find the code and escape the lab. It may sound easy, but science is often easy - in theory. One hint for those of you that made it this far: remember that many chemicals in research labs can be quite dangerous. Appropriate safety equipment is always required before working on any experiments.

Finally, while good science should never be rushed, competition often leads to greatness. Keep an eye on the timer and see how quickly you can escape LAB ESCAPE.

Note: The game is stored on the University of Calgary's server because it is larger than the 2 megabyte limit imposed by the iGEM wiki.