Strategy, Design and Build of a web based game and mobile app

Maths Circle came to us with the idea of creating a game for young children to learn basic maths. They already had a very successful game called Times Table Rockstars which is played in thousands of schools and enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of older children all around the world.

The challenge was to create and equally successful game that would be used before TTRS for younger children to learn to add and subtract. The target age was 5+ so the game had to be incredibly easy to use, super engaging, and work on the 100’s of different devices that children of this age may use.

The Solution

We created the game as a fully bespoke web application using ReactJS on the front end and Laravel Lumen for the API. This approach was important for a few key reasons. It has meant that the web application can be quickly and easily wrapped up into native applications and delivered via the various app stores (Apple, Google Play, Amazon etc) so there is no duplication of code and updates can be rolled out very quickly and efficiently. This approach is also incredibly scalable. The front end is lightweight and runs smoothly on any device and the backend can scale to serve hundreds of thousands of players.

Easy to use for young children, the majority of the game works by clicking on large images, rather than lots of text to read. It’s integrated with school systems to teachers can easily setup classrooms and help the children get started.
Level builder, we created a bespoke level builder so that our client could quickly create new levels or edit existing ones so that the game could be adapted and improved as feedback was received.
Custom shack, children earn coins by playing the levels, they can then spend the coins they’ve earned on upgrading their robot.
Badges and rewards, as well as earning coins, there are lots of other rewards that pop up along the way to keep the children engaged.
Proven learning, a challenge area that enables really clear reporting on how a child is progressing therefore proving the games value to teachers and parents.
Infrastructure, specifically built and hosted using Heroku for scale during peak playing hours throughout a school day.

The Results

Within the first 6 months of launch, there has been 14,000 schools, 350,000 children and over 19 million plays. A single day could see over 50,000 children playing over 1 millions games.

It has been incredibly well received within the education sector and even recognised by Ofsted