Habitat will reward kids for visiting locations.
The game’s creator Kylee Ingram says “This will be an important part of our real world rewards. Kids are going outdoors 70% less than they did two generations ago. We are going to reward them for getting out in the world and finding locations. They will receive a beautiful unique pin that they will be able to trade with other players from all over the world.”
Thanks to Habitat’s friends at the Wildlife Conservation Society and The Rainforest Alliance. There will be locations in 100 countries around the world when the game officially launches in March.
How location services will work?
When players near a Habitat location they will automatically notified on their device there is a location within 50 meters of their current location.
They will be told how many Habitat points they will earn if they find the location and which location pin they will receive.
When they find the location they automatically receive a pin. They can also earn Habitat points by completing a quiz about the animal or location they have found. These pins can be traded with other Habitat players.
Nine year old Jenny lives in Sydney. She is walking near the park under and she receives an alert that a Habitat location is near her.
“There is a Habitat location” 30 meters from your current location. Find the location and you will be rewarded 30 Habitat points and be given a unique BLACK COCKATOO pin.”
Jenny presses the start button on her phone and heads off to find the location. The phone let’s her know when she has been successful.
“Congratulations you just earned the BLACK COCKATOO pin. By clicking on her pin Jenny learns some fun facts about the Black Cockatoo. She can also answer a quiz for additional Habitat points.
Two days later
Jenny passes the park again and picks up another BLACK COCKATOO pin. She has collected two so she can trade this pin with another kid in the world.
Jenny looks through the app and decides she would like an Iguana pin she will need to make the trade with another player in Costa Rica. The kids can only see one another’s user names. Jenny offers the other player her BLACK COCKATOO pin and the PENGUIN pin she located at the zoo.
Jenny is asked three multiple choice questions about Iguanas before the transfer occurs. Jenny then goes and checks out her pin page where she is rapidly building on the number of pins she has.
We caught up with Greg Hunsburger who is the 3D Designer on Habitat:
Tell us a little about your background?
I am 2D designer and 3D animator. I’ve designed and animated exhibition pieces for the Australian Museum and media for the Australian Maritime Museum among other fun and quirky projects. I am a nature enthusiast and natural born explorer.
What do you like about Habitat?
The Bear, the Park and the Heart of the project. It’s exciting to work on a game that puts an important message forward while making something really fun and engaging. The bears are ridiculously cute!
What kind of animation decisions have you been making?
I’ve been across the entirety of the project writing actions scripts and making sure the Bear’s character is really front and center. The decisions that I make are about making these Polar Bears lovable and where the animations all fit within a dynamic narrative. My hope is that Habitat the game is as much about meeting and getting to know the bears as much as playing games with them.
What have been some of the challenges for you?
Redesigning our work pipeline from 3D and 2D animation over to game building has been one kind of challenge. Making game play and reward decisions that stay true to the heart of our game while keeping it a fun experience has been a very cool and altogether new puzzle to solve.
What are elements of the game you have enjoyed building?
I’ve enjoyed designing and building the quirky Achievements and thinking about the way in which real world actions can be dynamically reflected in the game world and game play. When kids see our bear doing a belly flop after taking a trip down our crazy ice-slide they are going to go bananas. When they see the park ravaged by pollution and climate change they are really going to get poked in the feelers.
Tell us a little about the Team you are working in. They come from a range of backgrounds?
The team is full of passion and seems to boil over with ideas and solutions. The team is new to apps but Brian’s experience is helping us navigate the waters with a lot of confidence. We’re a funny, quirky bunch and we all collaborate really well. The heart and soul of the game is something we all believe in, so it’s been a project of passion from the start.
What future do you see for Habitat?
I see Habitat the game expanding into other earthly regions, exploring other animals; all the while making the link back to the player’s home and habits.
I see the brand bringing some really great tools that will help kids and parents understand their ecological footprints and how we can work together to get our planet out of this mess.