Seeing the world through a fish-eye lens
by Alan Zisman
(c) 1999. First
published in Toronto Computes,
Available on Macintosh CD and floppy
From: Ingenuity Works, Burnaby, BC 1-800-665-0667
$79.95 (discounted pricing for classroom labpacks)
Here on Canada?s West Coast, salmon aren?t just big
part of the local mythology, part of the region?s self-identity.
So where else would you expect to find salmon
Salmon Odyssey, from Burnaby, BC-based IngenuityWorks
is sort of like
SimCity, only from a salmon?s point of view. There?s a SimCity-like
with wide-angle and close-up maps, and a range of tools to click for
reports on things that matter.
Only here, what matters is what?s important to a
salmon. Things like
water temperature and oxygen supply. Because you are a salmon, trying
go upriver to spawn. Dangers abound?pollutants, hungry bears and other
fish, and humans fishing.
Salmon Odyssey follows the life-cycle of a salmon,
through 14 missions.
You learn to control the salmon with your mouse, and quickly learn not
to swim against fast water, and how to jump over obstacles like rapids
or waterfalls. Unlike a real salmon, you have access to a range of
and views of your surroundings (few if any salmon get an aerial-view of
their streams). You learn when and where it?s best to spawn.
Through the missions, you can guide the salmon through
the five stages
of their life cycle, from egg to alevin, to fry, smolt, and adult
Success consists in returning from the ocean with as many fish
as possible. As missions become more difficult, you must successfully
through white water rapids, industrial and mining zones, logging,
and city waterways. Users begin to realize the impact of civilization
the natural world.
Children from 9 up will find it a nice use of the
fun with learning about the salmon and its ecology. Recommended for
and classroom. Teachers will appreciate the Resource Guide for
use, including lesson plans for extending the learning beyond the
Available for Macintosh only.