I'm not going to lie to you. This might be the dorkiest game of all time, and virtually no one will want to play it. Of those who will want to, even fewer will be able, and don't worry, my sales pitch gets worse. It's a math game about physics.
Basically Green's cube is a word game but with physics equations designed to emphasize the multiple forms an equation can take. Look at Newton's second law, which is often taught as F=ma but not necessarily. Students on a different part of the planet might know it as F=m dv/dt and Newton himself defined it as the change in momentum, or F=dp/dt (look at the main image for other examples). Green's Cube embraces these differences/similarities by encouraging players to find different forms. Players construct equations from a randomly chosen tool-set and are rewarded for finding different or more elegant forms of equations and penalized for re-using equations played by others.
But beware! This isn't [insert name of your favorite word game here], and there is no dictionary. If challenged a player must be prepared to defend his play with derivations, verifications, logical reasoning, or just all-out mathematical proof. The competitive arena allows players to peak inside the heads of their peers and pick their brains in a way that typically isn't appropriate in a classroom setting.
Hopefully players will gain new perspectives and insight in the relationships of equations and break down affinities that can limit one's thinking, ultimately producing a generation of more robust and confident scientists. Here's what I mean. Because of the way I designed the game, to me 's' meant arc length so whenever I played it I used it in the context of rotational dynamics or something similar, but a friend immediately thought 'entropy' and thus used some limit cubes and other pieces to define the 2nd law of thermodynamics. This was the first time I got truly excited because he wasn't supposed to be able to make thermo. equations but he did. That brings me to the next topic.
Green's Cube is designed with undergraduate physics in mind(specifically mechanics and E&M but because of the way notation is reused, it entirely allows relativity, quantum, thermo., etc. equations) but is flexible enough to construct more sophisticated expressions and, with a few omissions, adaptable to high school levels. The game allows everything from basic algebra up to higher levels of calculus and differential equations with limits and sums and all that other sexy math. The creative may even attempt some generalized coordinates, Lagrangians, or Hamiltonians.
Because of the multitude of operators, variables, terms, etc. compared to the number of possible equations, I made the game pieces cubes allowing 6 options on a draw instead of just one or two. This frees up the game and quickens the pace. The faces are labeled according to some theme--the faces of the coordinate cubes are labeled with x, y, theta, phi, radius, and time. The cubes are broken into 3 categories: terms(variables, constants, etc), operators, and equals signs. The first two types are kept separate and drawn as needed. The equal signs determine the pace of the game.
The cubes are really the selling point. There's something very satisfying about rolling the cubes in your hand and dropping them into the slots on the game board.
About the title
Green's Cube is named in honor of George Green, a 19th century British miller who became a mathematician and physicist in his 40's. Among his contributions to both fields is a wildly popular theorem that recasts a double integral as a line integral. That's probably a bit obtuse. He basically found a way to know what is going on inside an object solely by looking at the outside. The point is he made things simpler by rewriting an equation in a different form, and that is exactly what this game is about.
For the technical-minded: it's not named Stoke's Cube because for simplicity the game only allows for 2-d equations and Green's theorem is the special case of Stoke's theorem for 2 dimensions.
Where I am now:
I've made a physical prototype and play tested it for about 3 months, and frankly, it's damn fun, and a bit addictive, but not perfect. The game drags towards the end of the game because certain cubes seem to be over looked more than others (though that may simply be due to the people playing). I'm at the point where it would be easier and cheaper to tweak the cube layouts and distribution digitally.
What the money is for:
- Adobe Flash Builder License
- Domain registry
- Web hosting
- Mass Production of 500
- Shipping and Handling of awards and the final product
- Other stuff I overlooked
My programming skills are geared more towards research-type applications so I am unfamiliar with the standards of security, legality, database handling, etc. necessary to fully develop a flash game for the masses so a digital version isn't my main goal at this time, but that being said, any funds above my goal will be put towards a flash version.
- (90 days)