Looking for Collaborators in 3D Game Creation Tool for Kids

Posted by Philadelphia Game Lab on July 6, 2015

flip: Looking for Collaborators in 3D Game Creation Tool for Kids

We’ve been working on a 3D game development interface to bring kids into use of creative technology, and it would be great to have your insights and collaboration this fall as we get to next steps, and seek to get it into kids’ hands and to gather the insights of educators. Core ideas are that it has to pull kids in without requiring instruction (although it should be a useful and credible element of curriculums), and equally facilitate technical (Javascript, as this is WebGL-based) and creative interest (3D modeling).

It’s still early days, and we’re working toward ideas of final gameplay dynamics in this unfunded, spare time project of the new Adaptive Engines Corp. It is a browser-based technology, and will eventually work on phones, but this modest working demo is not yet optimized for mobile, and can be viewed through any current computer web browser.

Please give it a try at:
Below is an overview of what we’re seeking to do:


  • flip is conceived as an easy entry point to creative use of technology for any middle school student, with particular emphasis on serving the needs of kids without robust resources.
  • Any child should be able to use flip, on almost any device, for at least two months, with no external support.
  • A component of flip is also ensuring that once a kid is hooked, we quantify their interest and needs and work with other entities to satisfy these needs.

Kids without resources lack

  • Tools facilitating immediate success, as they often don’t possess self-belief that enable staging from crude to powerful tech toolsets
  • Confidence in their ability to participate in creative technology
  • Tools that work on the devices they can access at will (primarily mobile), and have confidence using, rather than being limited to computer lab time
  • Visibility to providers regarding their needs and desires to achieve inclusion in technology
  • Ubiquitous access to teachers with tech background or confidence


  • Child starts with three templates in flip, in which she can modify physics, 3D objects, map and rules, by use of simple sliders in the interface
  • Sometime within two months, the child moves from the templates and sliders to either a coding track (underlying JavaScript code is exposed for editing), or art (an interface for creating new 3D assets for import is enabled)
  • At 2-4 months of usage, the child is either directed to local training sessions for next steps of code or art (beyond flip), or online resources toward that purpose


  • WebGL. A 3D web standard, working on most browsers and most devices
  • JavaScript. The language that controls WebGL, is broadly useful, and validated as appropriate for middle school learners
  • lux. Open Source (permissive MIT license) server-side technology facilitating analysis

3 Templates of flip

  • First-person perspective, moving through a student-modifiable “map,” while the character on-screen utilizes tools for painting or modeling in the environment
  • A Role Playing Game, in which scripted characters interact in user-editable dialog
  • A Sport game, in which characters, rules and physics are the primary elements for modification

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