This award-winning app from Indonesia is a must-download for kids
JAKARTA, Indonesia – From sword fighting to magic spells to cute fluffy penguins, there was no shortage of entertaining games vying for the top prize at the Global Mobile App Summit and Awards (GMASA) Indie Pitch Fest, a competition aimed at supporting up-and- coming game developers.
But one app stood out above the rest not for its amusing game, but for its environmental message.
Froggy and the Pesticide, which received second place in the competition, aims to educate children about the dangers – both environmental and personal – of using pesticides.
The aim of the game, created by None Developers, is simple – the player gathers the safer-to-use biopesticides, brings them to a crying plant, presses a button to switch the pesticides with biopesticides, and earns coins as a result.
“It may be easy to use, but this is more than just fun and games,” says Anwar Fuadi, co-founder of None Developers. “This is about spreading awareness to make a difference in our country (Indonesia).”
While pesticides are a million-dollar industry in Indonesia, with the market reaching Rp 6 trillion in 2012, several studies have pointed to the environmental damage that pesticides can cause.
According to the Pesticide Action Network of the UK, pesticides can travel far beyond the location of their intended target and “contaminate the air, ground and water” of a wide range of animal habitats.
One of the main habitats that can be harmed by the presence of pesticides is a pond, and Fuadi says this is why they chose to feature a frog as the game’s hero.
“Froggy represents the large amount of frogs who are a non-targeted species but who are affected by traveling pesticides. Not only that, he represents the dangers that pesticides can cause to humans as well.”
Effect on humans
Studies have linked the inhalation and ingestion of pesticide laced produce as possible causes of birth defects, Alzheimer’s Disease and ADHD. In 2015, the World Health Organization announced that the most commonly used pesticide in the world, glyphosate, is “probably carcinogenic”.
Fuadi says these “alarming findings” mean that Froggy and the Pesticide is an important tool for not only children, but adults.
“We were actually inspired by looking around us and seeing that farmers always use pesticides rather than biopesticides, because they aren’t educated about the effects of pesticides. Our game has vital information for people of all ages.”
Fuadi hopes the message of the game will spread easily thanks to both the second-place award it received, and the prolific use of technology among Indonesians.
“This is the future of games… they will educate, they will inspire, and they will influence.”
You can download Froggy and the Pesticide on Google Play, Windows Store and Windows Phone. – Rappler.com