Game Development Reference
In PAST , students would be learning experientially, like in a physics lab. They can
explore firsthand the variables that have an effect on a particular problem.
For example, a player who knows how to apply physics would advance quickly in
any of the Magical Sports. The arrows and bow in Magical Archery are a 3D virtual
replication of the hypothetical “projectile canons” used in traditional physics labs.
Switching the variables, like the arrow's mass or the bow's applied force, would make
a difference. A change in the angle or position of the bow would, too. In Magical
Soccer, players try to kick balls into one of nine goalposts. Students would learn
about momentum and impulse as they apply these concepts to the differently massed
balls and differently placed goalposts that make up the game.
Finally, as an example of how to combat the Disruptures, the player could calcu-
late how dense of a mass and how fast of a velocity would be needed to collide with
the Disrupture to drain joules of energy from it.
Quests. Quests in PAST are similar to other fantasy MMORPGs. Players can learn
about each world's history, the political situation, and become more adept at spells.
At the same time, players also have physics-related quests. Similar to traditional
physics lab questions, these quests would involve finding the correct physical param-
eters to fulfill the mission. For example, if the player wanted to send a message to the
top of a castle with a bow and arrow, the player would have to select the right angle
and force such that the arrow has the kinetic energy to reach its target. Immediately
following the completion of the quest, there would be an optional multiple-choice
question for extra loot. To avoid drawing undue attention to the physics-related
quests, these multiple-choice questions would appear after story-based quests as well.
If the player successfully completes a quest about elves, then the multiple-choice
question might ask “Who is the king of the elves?” with a special reward for the
Figure 15.2. An example of the quest system in PAST. Screenshots courtesy of Futur-E-Scape,