The BBC have just announce a new Doctor and the Dalek game that aims to teach players basic programming skills, and set children on the path to a career in programming.
The game features the regenerated Twelfth Doctor thrown into a "dangerous quest with his most devious of enemies" in a new, standalone, story from Doctor Who writer, Phil Ford. It has been specially released to be part of the BBC's Make it Digital initiative that aims to "inspire a new generation to get creative with coding, digital technology and programming".
Each in-game puzzle is linked to the new computing curriculum in England and is designed to enable children to pick up core programming principles as they play. Several key stage 2 and 3 curriculum points (combining instructions to accomplish a given goal, using variables to alter behavior, repetition and loops, and logical reasoning) are included in the game.
The programming puzzle sections are linked together with platforming elements. Each puzzle unlocks an achievement that helps the Doctor build the Dalek back to full strength, ensuring it can take on increasingly difficult challenges as the game progresses.
The puzzles are designed to enable children to pick up core programming principles as they play. These skills include combining instructions to accomplish a given goal, using variables to alter behavior, repetition and loops, and logical reasoning.
There are also resources to accompany the game (from BBC Learning bbc.co.uk/schoolscomputing) for teachers and parents. These will provide links to other resources available from across the BBC and third parties, enabling children and teachers to take their learning journeys further.
Danny Cohen, BBC Director of Television, said: “The Doctor and the Dalek is a brand new Doctor Who story and a fantastic game, voiced by the wonderful Peter Capaldi. It’s an excellent example of how a hugely popular BBC show can give fans something extra, whilst also introducing wider audiences to increasingly important skills, such as coding and programming.
The Doctor and the Dalek will be available freely at bbc.co.uk/cbbc from Wednesday 22nd October.