Mannahatta: The Game is a location-based game for the iPhone that maps Manhattan’s historical ecosystem onto its modern day streets. Players move from block to block and gain points when they make connections between the ecological elements that used to exist in the exact same location in 1609, when Henry Hudson first set foot on the island. Working individually or as part of a team, a player must cover a wide physical territory across the city to collect points, earn badges and move to the top of the leader board.
The Game is based on The Mannahatta Project created by Dr. Eric Sanderson of the Wildlife Conservation Society. To learn more about the project, watch this presentation by Dr. Sanderson at the 2009 Global TED Conference or read the article in the September 2009 issue of National Geographic.
The Game was developed by PETLab at Parsons The New School for Design in cooperation with members of the New Youth City Learning Network. While the game is only in prototype stage now, when it is finished it will exemplify a new kind of 21st century learning product–one that fosters skills such as systems thinking, spatial navigation, and social collaboration via participatory, interest-driven forms of youth engagement.