Anti-hackathon report: Part 1- What Happened


Wrapping up the anti-hackathon and it seemed a good idea to do a post-mortem.

new game character

What happened?

We accomplished A LOT. In a week, we:

  • Drafted a skeleton of the game design,
  • Drafted the story line for 2/7 of the game,
  • Created characters for 2/7 of the game,
  • Created three video clips, including two for death!
  • Pulled together a lot of graphic elements, including those from our games, purchased from shutterstock or graphics factory or public domain.
  • Selected math standards for the game,
  • Tried three (or four, I lost count) formats including just using javascript/jQuery, ember.js and considered a few others – Unity, angular, impact. We made the decision to go with ember.
  • Created a sample app using ember, that was somewhat fleshed out for the first level, and went through a couple of iterations on how exactly that would work. We started with a switch that would serve different texts and images based on the decision point value, but now I think we are going to having an array of images and texts. That may have to be modified again, but we have made an extremely good start on what will be the framework for development, I think. This sample app is a Choose Your Adventure story. The format is three scenes, each of which may be text+ graphics or a video clip, followed by a math question, then a choice of adventure.
  • Wrote code to allow students to drag Xs to make a line plot and to grade the answer. This is one of those bits I can see us using over and over because. It was much better  than many of the ways I saw this problem solved online.
  • Wrote a few math problems, aligned with Common Core standard.
  • Wrote a format for the problems that goes like this:
  1. Problem
  2. If they get it wrong, a hint is shown with a second chance to try the problem,
  3. If they get the first problem wrong twice, an easier problem is shown,
  4. hint for problem 2
  5. Death! Afterlife video clip plays and you are sent back to beginning of the game

Would we do it again? Definitely, but not right away. Why not? Well, I’ll explain that in my next posts on what went right and what went wrong, in my opinion. We may have other team members chime in here as well.

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