How 7 Gen Blocks is WordPress for Educational Games

I’ve made many sites with WordPress and I’m not alone. According to W3tech, WordPress is used by 43% of all websites.

WordPress is Successful Because it is Easy for Novices to Start and Almost Infinitely Expandable for Experts

Think about it. You can click Add Post, type a title and then just start typing to create a blog post, then click Publish. It won’t be beautiful but it will be functional.

This certainly isn’t unique to WordPress, other wildly successful software, from Photoshop to Microsoft Office has tapped into this model as well. Our 7 Gen Blocks aren’t as easy as they will be – yet – but we are taking the WordPress model to heart.

Your message can be this:

"Find corn. Gain 4 points." ,

or it can be this:

<span class='lang1'>Find corn. Gain 4 points.</span><span class='lang2 d-none'>Encuentra maíz. Gana 4 puntos.</span>
Instruction page, in English, for a maze game
Instruction page, in Spanish, for a maze game

Making it easy for people to do something they want to do

Wanting to share your thoughts with an audience is as old as the first person in a cave scratching a picture on the walk with a sharp rock. Think about all it took to post web pages before WordPress. You needed to know something about HTML which you coded with a plain text editor. You needed to know how to use FTP to upload your web pages to a server. You had to have access to a remote server, which not many people did. When CSS became available for styling, that was just one more thing you needed to learn. It’s unsurprising that not many people thought of writing their own web page, and some who I know did gave up before they even started, once they learned about the significant technical lift involved. What WordPress did was make it easy for people to do what they had been wanting to do all along.

Hey, I have an idea for a game

– Half of the people I meet

Millions of people think they have a good game idea – and they’re probably right

Since we began 7 Generation Games nine years ago, I swear, half of the people I have met, when they hear I make games, say to me, “Hey, I have an idea for a video game.” Just like there are blogs on everything from knitting to medieval warfare reenactment to programming with node.js, there are no doubt millions of game ideas that someone would want to play. I’m not a big knitter, but, hey, you do you.

That’s why we started working on 7 Gen Blocks, because there were so many good game ideas, like Making Camp Ojibwe, which starts with the Ojibwe migration or Making Camp Lakota, which is in English and Lakota. We wanted to make games that highlighted the contributions of Indigenous people to agriculture so we made Making Camp Navajo and Aztech: Meet the Maya.

Okay, yes, I’m getting carried away, but my point is that we very badly wanted something that allowed us to make games cheaper and faster because of all of the ideas for games WE wanted to make.

Of course, you can use Unity or Unreal Engine or Phaser to make a game, but it’s not that easy. Add making it a game that really touches something and you’ve laid a whole new challenge on top of that.

So, that’s our challenge, in between making the games we’re working on ourselves, to move 7 Gen Blocks from easy for developers to easy for anyone. Because that really will be a game changer.

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