This makes Cargo Dynasty nothing less than the largest and most expensive educational game in the history of Denmark. Today it was presented at the Transport Industry Show in Herning. Here the game was tested live by its primary target group: students from the top two years of the state school system. Henrik Dam Kristensen, Denmark’s Transport Minister, looked on with great interest.
“We can really sense that there are increasingly fewer students looking for jobs in the transport industry. It is not a problem right at this moment, but it will be in the future. If we don’t do something drastic now, in a few years’ time the transport industry will experience a serious shortage of skilled labour,” says Magnus Købke, Project Manager at TSU and the man responsible for the development of Cargo Dynasty.
TSU is giving away the game completely free of charge to state schools to serve as teaching material. There is one very specific reason for this.
“The game can hopefully give some young people the courage and desire to carve out a career in the transport industry. It is both a fun and challenging industry to work in, and the game reflects this,” says Magnus Købke.
The Transport Minister, Henrik Dam Kristensen visited TSU’s stand on Thursday morning and spoke with students from Hamming Continuation School, who played Cargo Dynasty live at the trade show in Herning.
“This is a fantastic initiative,” said the minister. “It is a game, which has been designed specifically to prepare students for the demands that exist in the world of business. And they even think it’s fun. Let’s just hope that feeling stays with them.”
Play and Learn
The Cargo Dynasty computer game cost DKK 7m to develop. It is similar in character to the well-known, commercially successful games Sim City and Minecraft, in that a player starts at 0 and has to build his/her own haulage company with warehouses, lorries, qualified staff etc.
Cargo Dynasty is a multi-player, online-based game, in which groups of students have to compete against each other to win as many bidding rounds on goods as possible, and thus earn the most money. But it is not so easy. Expenditure and income must correspond, so you really need a calculator. Staff have to be trained, warehouses built and rules for driving times and rest periods must be complied with. Otherwise, you get fined by the police. The game is also available in a single-player version.
In addition you can of course spend time and money pimping your lorry with cool wheel rims, trendy spoilers and an impressive body finish. Mind you, just as in the real world, they will not earn you any money.
Committed test pilots
Cargo Dynasty has already been tested in a beta version with transport students from EUC in Fredericia. The experience there shows that at least it is no problem getting students involved in the game. That is something TSU are extremely happy about, since they expect Cargo Dynasty to serve as a vital teaching component for students of transport in vocational colleges. That is why the game is programmed to ascertain whether it is a state school pupil or a transport student who logs on. The degree of difficulty adjusts accordingly.
Cargo Dynasty is already available for trial on cargodynasty.com, and is provided free of charge to vocational colleges and state schools.
Source: News International