Space Heroes is one of the most unique and proactive children’s virtual worlds available. Encouraging families to play together, equality among all players, and most importantly, whimsical fun and adventure, it is widely regarded as one of the best virtual worlds for kids under 12, even recently winning Silver in the Mom’s Choice Awards for Family Friendly Products.
Endless opportunity for creativity
The heroes behind Space Heroes are passionate about providing an entertaining and immersive game experience that is fun, safe and inclusive for all kids. Bubble Gum Interactive designed Space Heroes especially with content suitability, imaginative play and safety in mind. This is innate to the team as every person on it is creative, with stacks of half-finished scripts, music and poetry in their arsenal, and many are parents, older siblings, or caretakers of young kids, so imagination and child safety is always at the forefront of their mind. This has allowed the team at Bubble Gum Interactive to create a safe but inclusive world weaving a collaborative quest, evolving narrative and providing endless opportunities for adventure for young, curious minds.
This focus has allowed the team to craft an original unique story full of fun and adventure. In Space Heroes, kids create their own Space Hero and blast off for adventure as Space Hero Cadets. By playing the game, kids get to personalise their own Space Hero, learn how to use their Bubble Blaster, Jetpack and Starjet, make new friends, explore the galaxy, meet curious creatures and characters, complete daring quests and missions and unravel the secrets behind Lord Shadowbot and the missing Glows.
Not all kids are the same, their differences make them special.
It didn’t take long in the early days of creating Space Heroes to realise that making a game for kids is anything but child’s play. Being young at heart and connected to young people has also taught the team that not all kids are equal. It was impossible to create a game aspect that appealed to all boys under 12 and ones that appealed to girls under 12.
Instead, through a series of focus groups, the team identified six dominant gaming personality types, and adapted certain gameplay aspects to highlight these types, regardless of age and gender. Take the nurturer, who can adopt creatures in game, rescue Glows and help in the collaborative Community Garden; the competitor, who can compete with other kids in fast-paced starjet racing games or flex their brain in puzzles, relishing in their high score; or the explorative young mind who can savour multifaceted adventure through exploring hidden treasures and completing missions. There are many other types the team has identified and there are gameplay aspects that cater to them all. Best of all, because each child can have more than one type of gameplay personality, these elements all weave together to create a rich storyline, developing each child’s unique talents.
Encouraging proactive behaviour and responsibility
The game uses advanced word filters which are continually updated, a team of specially trained in-house moderators who make sure the focus is on fun, adventure, and the inclusive and safe interaction of all players. The Hero Code, which all heroes must abide by, is distilled into two main focal points: player safety and player behaviour. The code reflects Bubble Gum Interactive’s commitment to adventure and enthusiastic behaviour, focusing on bravery, loyalty, and helpfulness, as well as game exploration, courage, honesty and a lack of cheating.
Space Heroes is all about cultivating creativity and fun through a culture of respect and acceptance. The game is invested in allowing kids to embrace their uniqueness. Instead of being considered different, the game aims to celebrate difference and acceptance among players. By encouraging an open, positive environment where children feel safe and confident, it is decreasing any potential bullying, as bullies usually pick on perceived weaker children, singling them out.
The game encourages players to block those who are bothering them, sending the message that just like in the real world, we don’t have to get along with everyone we meet. Moderators monitor everything that is said in Space Heroes and investigate any potential bullies, giving bullies a chance to own their own behaviour. Space Heroes take cyber bullying seriously and makes it easy for players to tell moderators by reporting any bullying incidents. Encouraging collaborative game play, Space Heroes instils age-old wisdom that at the end of the day, when it comes to interacting with others, we have to treat them as we would like to be treated.
Play as a family and connect to others
Space Heroes has a menu chat available in 13 languages with more coming in the second quarter of 2012. It is played by tens of thousands of kids in over 80 countries, making it a truly inclusive global virtual community. Many Space Heroes play as a family unit, with young players in Australia exploring the galaxy with their grandparents in the United States.
With a focus on inclusive play, parents and older siblings regularly write into the Bubble Gum Interactive team thanking them for creating bonds and channels of communication that previously didn’t exist.
Space Heroes teaches developing young minds the importance of teamwork and responsibility, encouraging young players to build their social skills by working together and solving problems in the Community garden, training their pets, and rescuing the Glows, glowing creatures in every colour of the rainbow, who were stolen from their home by Lord Shadowbot, a dastardly villain afraid of the dark. In fact, the game encourages these young minds to take proactive action against bullies like Lord Shadowbot!
Free to play
Much more than a virtual world, Space Heroes is a virtual universe that provides kids with a safe, social, fun and interactive experience to play with friends online. Since launching in late 2011 the game has experienced rapid growth and universal praise from kids, parents, teachers and press from over 80 countries. Create your very own boy, girl or alien character and begin your very own adventure today at www.spaceheroes.com