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IF to learn with

Recommendations by Emily Short

A few IF games are designed to be educational (and not only for children). This is a brief overview of the ones I've found most successful.

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1. Inform School, by William J. Shlaer (1999)
Average member rating: (3 ratings)
Emily Short says:

Designed to help players learn to code in Inform. There's something delightfully recursive about this idea.

2. Lists and Lists, by Andrew Plotkin (1996)
Average member rating: (20 ratings)
Emily Short says:

A tutorial in the Scheme programming language.

3. 1893: A World's Fair Mystery
by Peter Nepstad
(2002)
Average member rating: (16 ratings)

Emily Short says:

A rich exploration of the setting of the Chicago World's Fair of 1893. There are puzzles and a plot, but the game's strong point is its meticulous recreation of a historical context, complete with period photographs.

4. Voices of Spoon River
by Jon Scoresby, Tim Stowell, Tom Caswell, Jared Bernotski, Marie Duncan, Marian Jensen, Jennifer Jorgensen, and Brett Shelton
(2006)
Average member rating: (1 rating)

Emily Short says:

A game designed to get students thinking about the events in the Spoon River Anthology.

5. The Chinese Room, by Harry Giles and Joey Jones (2007)
Average member rating: (26 ratings)
Emily Short says:

A medium-to-large puzzle game centered on philosophical thought experiments. There are some things in the competition release that could use cleaning up, but the writing is entertaining and there is plenty of background to explain all the philosophical issues here. I learned a lot, and had a lot of fun as well.

6. Ausflug am Wochenende nach München, by Brett Shelton, David Neville, Brian McInnis (2007)
Average member rating: (1 rating)
Emily Short says:

A brief but surprisingly effective game for English speakers learning German. Expects a small amount of pre-existing German knowledge.


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