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CRATE TRAINING: A Game for Learning Chinese Radicals

Kellie Packwood

My project will be a graphical game to introduce around fifteen Chinese character radicals. Radicals are used in Chinese and Japanese Kanji writing systems. They are smaller versions of commonly used characters that when combined with other characters form new words. Thus, recognizing key radicals is crucial to basic literacy. The premise of Crate Training is you are a cat stuck in a shipping crate bound for China. The radicals will be presented in a list, with the Pinyin, or Latin transliteration, also supplied. While in the shipping crate, you will encounter ten scenarios that represent a radical each. Five radicals will be linked to bonuses or items to make a level easier but will not be required to complete a level. For example, the water radical will be used in the Thirsty scenario where the cat is running out of water and must find the water bottle crate before the time is up. Each level's difficulty will be determined by the amount of time (in seconds), with the lower level scenarios allowing for more time in selection. If a player fails to select the right box, it is considered a failed attempt and the level scenario will repeat again. Each failed attempt will cost the cat three lives, and when nine lives are spent, the game is over.