Digital Game: The Ruby Realm

The Ruby Realm is a 20-level adventure/maze game about photosynthesis that addresses the misconception that soil provides the mass in plants. Players navigate a vast cavern in search of missing friends, only to discover that they have entered a hidden, treasure-filled world whose vampire inhabitants do not like intruders. Luckily, players have a trusty guide in Biobot Bob, a robot powered by artificial photosynthesis, who helps them fend off hungry bats and angry vampires.

Players must find light sources where Bob can generate the glucose he needs for power. Using Bob’s Molecule Replicator, they shoot light beams at carbon dioxide and water molecules, breaking them apart and recombining the atoms to form glucose. They can also make other substances, such as tear gas, which Bob uses to repel the vampires. The game helps students construct an understanding of photosynthesis by letting them actively participate in the process of chemical change.