"Friends, our federal education policy has reached such absurdity and stupidity and child abuse that the best way to explain it is through satire." Diane Ravitch
"This, apparently, will indeed be a bitingly funny and viciously satirical game, but also, and that's me judging based on the previous offerings of Subaltern Games, a great strategy/management game." Indiegames
"No Pineapple Left Behind is the most bizarre game I've seen." Destructoid
"Should be fun, unless you’re my father, in which case you’d likely adamantly disagree with everything this game is trying to say." Killscreen
One day, an evil wizard shows up to a school and turns all of the children into pineapples. Pineapples are very simple. All they do is take tests and get grades. If they get good grades, the school gets more money. But if left unattended, pineapples can turn back into children! Children are way more complicated, and have needs and feelings. They are much harder to deal with. You are the principal. Your job is to run the school.
Manage a School. Think Prison Architect, but school instead of jail. Balance the budget, assign classes, listen to out-of-tune marching bands... and don't go bankrupt.
De-humanize children. Pineapples may be so-so test-takers, but at least they're cheap. No wants, no needs, no emotions, no hassle. Force children to memorize facts or, better yet, send in cops, to turn them back into pineapples...
Humanize pineapples. ...or you could try turning the pineapples back into children. Humans are very complicated. They have complex relationship networks: bullies, exes, frenemies, etc. But, unlike pineapples, they can get "A" grades, and, if properly handled, can be way more fun.
Cast spells. This is the main way that teachers educate students. We are planning 20+ spells with unique animations and sounds.
Cook the books. Your budget is determined by the average grade of each classroom, so you should probably put all of the students with low grades in the same room. Or expel them. Or lie about the grades.
Fire teachers. Teachers start out cheap and inexperienced. Over time, they lose energy, which affects their competence. The better their salary, the faster they recharge their energy. Will you retain a small number of well-paid, skilled teachers? Or will you have a large number of burned-out, poorly-paid teachers that you just fire and re-hire over and over?
Deal with buses not showing up on time. Seriously, this has been the most-requested feature by every teacher we've asked. It will happen!
Seth Alter (the Captain of Industry of Subaltern Games) used to be a teacher. He quit that job, partially to go full-time indie dev, and partially because he was dismayed by how the administration treated the students. Even as he worked on Neocolonialism, he began to plan No Pineapple Left Behind, a response to his former job.
In the United States, a powerful "education reform" movement is demolishing the existing public school system. Facing insufficient budgets and powerful politicians and corporations, teacher's unions, especially in urban areas, have crumbled, and de-unionized corporate "charter schools" have become a new norm. The result is an educational system in which the students are responsible for the budget; teachers are underpaid, under-trained, and without bargaining power; and any hope of fixing things is an increasingly distant dream.
Jacobin is, according to its About Page, "a leading voice of the American left, offering socialist perspectives on politics, economics, and culture. The print magazine is released quarterly and reaches over 6,000 subscribers, in addition to a web audience of 400,000 a month."
We are proud to be working with Jacobin to help spread the word about our game and to fight the good fight for teacher's unions.
In January 2013, we launched a successful Kickstarter for Neocolonialism, a game in which you try to extract as much money from the world as possible. We fulfilled all of our backer obligations on schedule as promised and released the game in November. No Pineapple Left Behind is our second project.
Rent, mostly. We have all worked really really hard to get this far. For all of us, this is either a full-time or part-time job, and we need to pay the bills if we want to finish this.
We are also setting some money aside to hire a new artist to handle all of the looks and behaviors that a child might have.
$1: Miguel's Love
Miguel's love is worth way, way more than $1. Trust us, this is a total bargain.
$10: The Game
You get a digital key for the game when it is released. Steam-redeemable if we are Greenlit.
$25: Alpha Prototypes + Soundtrack
Right now, we are debugging the "Corrosive Currant" build. Nothing works; you probably wouldn't find it very fun. But, starting with the upcoming "Dimorphic Datepalm" build, you will have access to every alpha release.
$50: Name a Teacher + Course Reader
The Course Reader is a strategy guide, an artbook, and a Cantaloupian translation guide. Cantaloupian is a constructed language that students must learn for their "foreign language" class.
$100: Pineapple Portrait
This could be YOU:
They are adorable:
$250: Five-Paragraph Essay
$250: "Class Action" book
Class Action: An Activist Teacher's Handbook is, according to Jacobin Magazine, "a 118-page booklet on corporate education reform and the efforts to resist its agenda."
$500: The Bad Thing
Think of something awful that happened to you in middle/high school and we will put it in the game!
The Bad Thing must be something short ("the day I sat in gum on the bus") and not something ongoing ("the year that everyone bullied me and I had no friends"). If we feel that your Bad Thing is not appropriate for the game, we will email you, explain our reasoning, and request that you pick another Bad Thing.
$1000: Librarian, Coach, Art Teach, Vice Principal
You will be one of these specialist teachers in the game. This is what a stock teacher looks like:
$3000: Pineapple Dinner With the Team
We've already had a pineapple dinner, so this idea is totally tested. Transportation not provided.
$10000: Course on the Ottoman Empire
Seriously, this will be a no-joke tough-as-nails course. There will be so much homework. Only pledge this much if you really want to learn about the Ottomans.
Risks and challenges
Right now, the expected release dates for beta access and the final release are very tentative. We would like to make a very deep and complex simulation, but just how deep and complex will depend on how much funds we end up receiving, and accordingly might take much longer than expected.
Regardless, as we did with Neocolonialism, we WILL finish this project and send out all of the backer rewards.
With your help, there will be no pineapples left behind.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)