PlayWorthy: Crayon Physics Deluxe

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Created by Petro Purho

Reviewed by Becky Palmer-Scott

Every once in a while, a game comes along which truly amazes and delights — which seems to turn science into magic. Crayon Physics Deluxe is one such game, and was deservedly named the Grand Prize Winner of the Independent Games Festival of 2008.

Crayon Physics Deluxe play. The player has just drawn a boulder which will drop into the lever, throwing the ball toward the star.

Crayon Physics Deluxe play. The player has just drawn a boulder which will drop into the lever, throwing the ball toward the star.

The premise of the game is that you are drawing with crayons on paper
— the entire game recalls the look of early elementary school — but the drawings become animated by gravity, and your drawings fall, bounce, rock and swing. The object of the game is to move a ball from its starting place to a star-shaped target, by using ramps, levers, catapults, pulleys, pins, ropes, and more.

Like all good games, it starts out easy and become increasingly complicated. This makes it suitable for players of all ages. As in real life, there are a multitude of right answers for each level; whatever gets the ball to the target will work. Indeed, the game gives points for providing a variety of solutions to each puzzle. This allows players to exercise creativity and experiment freely. The game even includes a level editor where players can create their own puzzles.

The game itself doesn’t provide answers to the puzzles, but level walkthroughs can be found on the Internet by searching for “Crayon Physics Deluxe answers”.

All in all, this game is a perfect way to introduce physics, engineering, creativity, and the scientific method.

Do you know of good learning games you would like to tell others about?
Write to our editor at SpecialEdTechEditor@gmail.com.

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