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Activision Announces Science Papa

by Pedro Hernandez - May 16, 2009, 9:05 am PDT
Total comments: 35

Activision experiments with science and fun on the Wii and DS.

Activision has recently announced Science Papa, a game all about having fun with science. Taking elements from real world science, Activision hopes to achieve family fun while stimulating science discussion and fueling children’s curiosity. Players will join Science Papa as the newest member of his research team, facing off against rival scientists through over 30 different experiments that feature creative use of motion control on Wii and touch control on DS. Players can also compete against each other and see who can complete an experiment the fastest while maintaining their scientific precision.

Science Papa will be released this July.

ACTIVISION PUBLISHING PUTS THE FUN BACK IN THE LAB WITH SCIENCE PAPA THIS JULY

MINNEAPOLIS, MN – May 14, 2009 – 'Activision Publishing, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI) today announced Science Papa™ 'is coming to Wii™ and Nintendo DS™ this July. Using fundamentals from a wide variety of sciences as a basis for fun skill-based experiments, Science Papa will turn living rooms into virtual laboratories that will fuel kids' curiosity.

“With Science Papa', we’re taking real-world elements of science and giving players the chance to interact with them in safe and creative ways,” said David Oxford, Activision Publishing. “While the focus here is clearly family fun, the game can stimulate interest and discussion about science.”

In Science Papa', the player is the newest member of Science Papa’s research team, looking to become the greatest scientist in the world. It won’t be easy, however, as players must prove their scientific worth against a crazy cast of rival scientists in intense competitions. Science Papa' features over 30 different experiments for players, and by utilizing motion controls or Nintendo DS stylus, players will pour and mix chemicals, pound objects into dust, monitor Bunsen burners, fix and use lab equipment and more. Players can also invite their friends into the lab, and compete against each other in split screen science competitions to see who can finish an experiment first, and with the most precision.

For more information visit www.activision.com

Talkback

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterMay 16, 2009

Now...

If PETA protested Cooking Mama because of her meat based dishes, will they protest Science Papa for experimenting with animals?

HAH HAH HAH I MADE A FUNNY WITH SOCIAL COMMENTARY! DUH I IS SMART! :D

KDR_11kMay 16, 2009

I think we'll see more feminists complain that they saw fit to replace Mama with Papa because the game is about science instead of housework.

Quote from: KDR_11k

I think we'll see more feminists complain that they saw fit to replace Mama with Papa because the game is about science instead of housework.

I sincerely hope not.  Cooking and gardening are creative outlets.  Now, if it were "Sweeping Mama," they'd have a point.

broodwarsMay 16, 2009

Quote from: KDR_11k

I think we'll see more feminists complain that they saw fit to replace Mama with Papa because the game is about science instead of housework.

Honestly, I'm starting to side with that camp these days.  That we have a Babysitting Mama coming out followed by a Science Papa just seems to make the sexism all the more glaring.

TJ SpykeMay 16, 2009

The Mama games are from Majesco though, not Activision. Besides, people are always complaining about the lack of games starring women.

Kairon works for Majesco, maybe he can tell us what they were thinking.

broodwarsMay 16, 2009

Quote from: TJ

The Mama games are from Majesco though, not Activision. Besides, people are always complaining about the lack of games starring women.

Oh come on, you're not going to argue that having games staring women performing stereotypical "women" roles (cooking, cleaning, taking care of the kids) is the better option.  It reinforces a bad stereotype, one that Activision is only reinforcing on the other side of the spectrum (it's not coincidence that this new game uses a similar name...they know what they're doing).

What's wrong with women learning to do their job?

broodwarsMay 16, 2009

Quote from: Zap

What's wrong with women learning to do their job?

*facepalm*

TJ SpykeMay 16, 2009

Quote from: broodwars

Quote from: TJ

The Mama games are from Majesco though, not Activision. Besides, people are always complaining about the lack of games starring women.

Oh come on, you're not going to argue that having games staring women performing stereotypical "women" roles (cooking, cleaning, taking care of the kids) is the better option.  It reinforces a bad stereotype, one that Activision is only reinforcing on the other side of the spectrum (it's not coincidence that this new game uses a similar name...they know what they're doing).

Whether you agree with it or not, most people in the gardening and cooking professions ARE women. I can't believe anybody is even complaining. There is nothing stereotypical here or any of these games.

broodwarsMay 16, 2009

Quote from: TJ

Quote from: broodwars

Quote from: TJ

The Mama games are from Majesco though, not Activision. Besides, people are always complaining about the lack of games starring women.

Oh come on, you're not going to argue that having games staring women performing stereotypical "women" roles (cooking, cleaning, taking care of the kids) is the better option.  It reinforces a bad stereotype, one that Activision is only reinforcing on the other side of the spectrum (it's not coincidence that this new game uses a similar name...they know what they're doing).

Whether you agree with it or not, most people in the gardening and cooking professions ARE women. I can't believe anybody is even complaining. There is nothing stereotypical here or any of these games.

Well excuse the hell out of me for growing up in a family of strong women, having the audacity to believe in something aproximating gender equality where neither sex has to be pigeonholed into a specific role.

Quote from: insanolord

Kairon works for Majesco, maybe he can tell us what they were thinking.

Oh har de har har.

I think it's pretty obvious, given the "Mama" "Papa" parallel that this is as close a reflection of the original success without mucking up the formula.

If they wanted to show that the game was not gender-biased, they'd do what Taito did with Cooking Mama 2 on the Wii: give Science Papa a daughter who he's teaching all this to, like Mama was teaching a young boy in the Wii sequel.

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterMay 16, 2009

Ironically, the Gardening Mama TV spot has young men playing the game and proudly showing their green thumbs.

I think both games are playing off of playful cartoon "stereotypes". Science has their cooky, funny, silly scientists (like Ludwig Von Drake, Doc Brown etc.) while cooking and home making have their warm, slightly silly mothers (June Cleaver Carol Brady etc.).

broodwarsMay 16, 2009

Quote from: Kairon

If they wanted to show that the game was not gender-biased, they'd do what Taito did with Cooking Mama 2 on the Wii: give Science Papa a daughter who he's teaching all this to, like Mama was teaching a young boy in the Wii sequel.

Agreed.  That would eliminate the obvious sexism and allow us to just focus on the rampant plagiarism in the concept.  I didn't mind the Mama series till they stepped over that invisible line with the babysitting entry.

TJ SpykeMay 16, 2009

AFAIK, no Babysitting Mama game has been announced, only a trademark filed. Companies file trademark applications all the time, they don't always end up using them (remember Square Enix registering "Chrono Break" long ago?). You can't judge a game that doesn't even exist.

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterMay 16, 2009

Maybe its just me, but what is exactly wrong with a babysitting game? Yes, it might reek of sexism in some ways, but not only is "playing house" a favorite among girls there's the need for people to teach girls the responsibilities of raising a baby before they decide to get knocked up at 16. Many schools are giving both girls and boys a baby to raise as assignments.

I think there's such a huge stink over gender roles that more damage is being done that good. Yes, boys are capable of doing girl thinks and girls can do whatever boys do. But if a girl likes playing Barbie and a boy likes to watch Wrestling and play videogames why should we stop them?

Parents should allow kids to choose what they like as long as they teach them the important things. Many girls who collected Barbies like crazy grow up to be the best teachers. Boys who liked mud grow up to become master surgeons. The key here is that we allow kids to choose what they like and what they want to be while teaching them the important lessons.

broodwarsMay 16, 2009

Quote from: pap64

Maybe its just me, but what is exactly wrong with a babysitting game? Yes, it might reek of sexism in some ways, but not only is "playing house" a favorite among girls there's the need for people to teach girls the responsibilities of raising a baby before they decide to get knocked up at 16. Many schools are giving both girls and boys a baby to raise as assignments.

I think there's such a huge stink over gender roles that more damage is being done that good. Yes, boys are capable of doing girl thinks and girls can do whatever boys do. But if a girl likes playing Barbie and a boy likes to watch Wrestling and play videogames why should we stop them?

Parents should allow kids to choose what they like as long as they teach them the important things. Many girls who collected Barbies like crazy grow up to be the best teachers. Boys who liked mud grow up to become master surgeons. The key here is that we allow kids to choose what they like and what they want to be while teaching them the important lessons.

See, I think we essentially agree on this.  My problem with the Mama series is just seeing this continuing trend.  I wouldn't mind a Babysitting game; I wouldn't mind a Cooking game; and I wouldn't mind a Gardening game.  But you put all these games starring women performing stereotypical roles, and a pattern emerges that's kind of troubling, especially when you have a competiting company putting out a copycat that plays to the opposite spectrum.  So long as choice is always emphasized, I don't have a problem with this.

PlugabugzMay 16, 2009

Unless you have a babysitting game with DLC of code for new "baby variants" such as always crying regardless what you do, then the game will have no point to me. You won't learn anything.

BlackNMild2k1May 16, 2009

You guys are so crazy, I can't wait for the competitive sequels:
Pregnant Stay At Home Mama vs Gotta Bring Home Tha Chedda Papa

which is not to be confused with:
Workaholic Single Mama vs Deadbeat Non-Existant Papa

it goes both ways.

ShyGuyMay 16, 2009

I'm curious what GP has to say about this. KNOW YOUR ROLE.

DAaaMan64May 16, 2009

Quote from: KDR_11k

Obligatory VGCats

LOL. That was funny but really sad. I felt sorry for Mama.

Mop it upMay 16, 2009

It does seem strange to attach the word "Papa" to this. Isn't there any non-gender-specific title they could have come up with? Although I suppose anything with the word "science" in it is going to sound boring...

broodwarsMay 16, 2009

Quote from: Mop_it_up

It does seem strange to attach the word "Papa" to this. Isn't there any non-gender-specific title they could have come up with? Although I suppose anything with the word "science" in it is going to sound boring...

They could always go the WiiWare route and mash together 2 or 3 words that have nothing to do with each other, like "Science Party Smash!"

Mop it upMay 16, 2009

At least "party" and "smash" make a game sound fun. Can you name any fun games with "science" or "papa" in the title?

PlugabugzMay 17, 2009

Science Person.

TJ SpykeMay 17, 2009

Quote from: Mop_it_up

At least "party" and "smash" make a game sound fun. Can you name any fun games with "science" or "papa" in the title?

"Death, Jr.: The Science Fair of Doom" wasn't that bad of a game.

vuduMay 18, 2009

Quote from: Mop_it_up

It does seem strange to attach the word "Papa" to this. Isn't there any non-gender-specific title they could have come up with? Although I suppose anything with the word "science" in it is going to sound boring...

That totally defeats the purpose.  The game is obviously designed to appeal to the crowd of people who purchase the Mama games (there was a news story last week that proclaimed the series has already sold 4 million copies in the USA).  Since Activision can't come up with a Mama game without getting sued, they did the next best thing.  Everyone who likes the Mama games will immediately be drawn to this game (in theory) because it's practically the same thing.

NinGurl69 *hugglesMay 18, 2009

Dr. Wily Crap Clone is nowhere near as adorable as Mama.

Mop it upMay 18, 2009

Quote from: vudu

The game is obviously designed to appeal to the crowd of people who purchase the Mama games. Everyone who likes the Mama games will immediately be drawn to this game (in theory) because it's practically the same thing.

Well that sounds pretty stupid, so it must be true.

Quote from: NinGurl69

Dr. Wily Crap Clone is nowhere near as adorable as Mama.

Sadly, this seems true.

NinGurl69 *hugglesMay 19, 2009

Mama-san has appeal.

Mop it upMay 19, 2009

FACT: Females are inherently more adorable than males.

StogiMay 19, 2009

but is science adorable?

Admirable maybe.

NinGurl69 *hugglesMay 19, 2009

http://gonintendo.com/?p=83122

I said wow.

Cooking Papa gets to have Cooking Mama for dinner.

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