We have all been hoping that winter was going to end … about a month ago. Thanks to the ground hog seeing his shadow we have all been subject to a long brutal winter. In this theme I am throwing back to an article from the depth of the 2013 winter.
The other day my friend, LuAnn Strine Phillips, posted a link on Facebook to a project she’s been working on: a winter safety game created in Second Life. Since cold weather safety is important to public works professionals, I visited her site to check it out. I landed in what looked to be a pine forest nestled under a thick blanket of snow. (For those of you in Second Life, you can check it out here: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Bailey/128/128/23)
There was an abandoned car and information about winter scattered among the trees. I walked over to a tube with a sign directing me to slide down the tube to enter the game:
I slid down the tube by clicking it and found myself in a room welcomed by the abominable snowman!
Because it was not my first time in Second Life, I moved onto the next set of instructions. (But if I had been new, I could have gone through a new user orientation.) Next up was an explanation of the game objective – pick up a few relatives and drive them to a party! And after that was a map of the game site and further instructions:
The game uses a heads up display or HUD to track points that can be earned by touching or collecting objects and answering questions related to safety. So after equipping my HUD, I was ready to begin the game and learn some important winter safety tips. My first stop was at my home in the game where I had to prepare for my trip. There is a lot of safety information to learn through interacting with the objects in this house. There’s also a barn in the back with more information related to winter weather safety for animals and livestock.
After completing all the preparation at my “home” I was able to drive off in the car. My first stop was to get gas and have my car checked at the service station down the road:
After that, I needed to make several stops along the way. A few of these were to pick up more items and some were to pick up my relatives. Here’s me at one of the stops where I took a few moments to fish and share a few words with one of the local residents. I had been a little worried walking across the ice to his shack, but fortunately the ice was thick, and I didn’t fall in. And I did get a fishing pole out of the deal:
Later on driving through the hills, I was so worried about the icy roads, I forgot to stop and pick up my Uncle. Fortunately I came back to get him because he was having some serious problems of his own and really needed my help. I won’t put up more photos except for the one of the final destination because I want to encourage everyone to check out the game for themselves. LuAnn did a great job with this project. It looks beautiful, is informative, addresses an important topic, and is more fun than just reading about winter safety on a website. (If you’ve never visited Second Life, you can join for free here:http://www.secondlife.com – and if you would prefer joining with a guide, just email me at[email protected] and I can arrange to meet you there your first time and give you some tips on getting started in a virtual world!)
*Every Thursday, GovLoop is combing through our archives to bring you stories of yore that could help you in your job today. So stay tuned for Throwback Thursday!