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Monday, May 7, 2007
'Speare Brings Shakespeare To Gamers
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 6 comments

'Speare, a flash based game developed by instructors at the University of Guelph in Ontario, combines arcade gameplay with the works of Shakespeare. 'Speare sends players into outer space on a mission to collect stolen knowledge based on the Bard's plays.

In the style of classic arcade games, 'Speare launches the player into outer space on a mission to reclaim stolen knowledge (story traces) based on Shakespeare's plays. By collecting words, phrases, and facts through game play, 'Speare challenges its players to use information to become successful knowledge gatherers. Only through knowledge gathering can a player successfully complete the game.

'Speare's arcade-style format uses quotes from Romeo and Juliet as the content for a puzzle game that coaches players to differentiate quickly between words and in order to develop the ties among Shakespearean vocabulary, homonyms, synonyms, and other facets of basic literacy.  This language is decoded for players using audio clips of narrated Shakespearean text (transmissions), as well as word definitions and explanations embedded throughout the game. In addition to kinetic and visual cues, the game uses proprietary technology for transforming game objects into text objects and does so with an advanced audio cue system. What this means is that players who successfully perform a knowledge gathering operation will get both visual and audio cues to confirm their success, thus reinforcing the links between the sound and the sight of the game text in play.
A demo of 'Speare is available from the website listed below. For more information about the game's development check out the Reuters article.

'Speare: The Literacy Arcade Game
'Speare Demo
Reuters: Video Game Hooks Children On Shakespeare

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