The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced that it has partnered with the International Game Developers Association and Whyville
creators Numedeon for the Apps for Healthy Kids
game development competition.
The contest, part of First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move! campaign to end childhood obesity, encourages game developers and students to create learning games that promote healthy food choices and active lifestyles.
The IGDA will host a series of game jams
on the weekend of May 21st through 23rd in several major U.S. cities, as a joint initiative of the Games for Health Project and Health Games Research. Participants in each event, working individually or in teams, will have 48 hours to produce prototype games for the Apps for Healthy Kids competition.
Numedeon will use its virtual world Whyville.net as a testing site for Apps for Healthy Kids projects. Whyville's users will play, rate, and submit feedback for each contest entry, and will receive in-game rewards for their input.
"Ending our childhood obesity crisis within a generation will require the help and support of innovative partners like Numedeon and IGDA," said U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack.
"The Apps for Healthy Kids competition is a great way to harness the combined creativity of game developers, local youth and adults to work collaboratively to produce fun, innovative games that promote healthy lifestyles. Both partnerships will have a tremendously positive impact on the competition and on improving the health and nutrition of kids across the nation."