Monday, April 16, 2012

Whyville: Serious Games Inspiring Children’s Fashion

Serious Games as User Generated Content Set to Influence Children’s Fashion Worldwide


 Via: Numedeon, IncNumedeon Inc. and Topsville Inc. Announce Whyvillebranded Line of Tshirts Inspired by Children’s Own Avatar Designs

User Generated Content in Virtual World Set to Influence Children’s Fashion Worldwide

Numedeon, Inc., the parent company of Whyville.net, and Topsville Inc, a division of the major clothing manufacturer Jaclyn Inc, announced earlier this month the launch of a new line of children’s clothing inspired by avatars designed by the participants of Whyville.net, the premiere virtual world for learning (please find also  Whyville Game Design Contest: Serious Gaming With Game Design and New Report: Scientific Accuracy In Serious Games Stimulates Scientific Inquiry

“13 years ago, Whyville.net pioneered the concept of User Generated Content (UGC), when we built tools for our young users to design face parts and construct avatars”, explained Dr. James Bower, one of Whyville’s founders and CEO of Numedeon Inc. “As a result, millions of children have developed literally millions of face parts reflecting an enormous range of looks and styles”.

“As one of the largest manufacturers of children’s clothing in the US, we spend considerable effort each year anticipating the fashions kids want,” says Mark Nitzberg, CEO of Topsville Inc. “In Whyville they create what they want.”

While many virtual worlds and online games have focused on the sale of virtual goods of little use in the real world, Numedeon and Topsville have partnered to blend virtual and real world experience by translating the excitement and creativity of children in virtual worlds into real world products.

The first line of product is a series of Tshirts that feature Whyvillestyle avatars inspired by the designs of Whyville’s participants. Reciprocally, by scanning a QR code on the real world Whyville Tshirts, children can wear the avatar featured on the Tshirt back in Whyville. 

“The creative energy of the citizens of Whyville never ceases to amaze us,” says Dr. Jennifer Sun, Numedeon’s President and Managing Director of Whyville. “We designed these Tshirts with Topsville as a tribute to their creativity and imagination.”

The “WhyTops” line of clothing is available online at Whyville.net and in real world retail outlets including select Peebles department stores.

About Whyville

Whyville  is the premiere educational virtual world for children, embedding simulationbased learning in an engaging and safe collaborative gaming environment. For thirteen years, the site has successfully created an environment that engages its "citizens" to learn about life, while having fun.

In Whyville, kids play, socialize, compete, learn, design, eat, dance, govern and much more. Numedeon Inc., the parent company of Whyville, was founded by scientists from the California Institute of Technology who combined research expertise in learning and education with advanced simulation and virtual world technology to harness the power of the Internet to engage young learners. 

At greater than 30 minutes per log in, Whyville is one of the stickiest and most engaging of all virtual worlds (ComScore Media Metrics) and recently surpassed more than 7.5 million registered accounts. A testament to Whyville’s dedication to education and safety, the site has won numerous media and parent awards, including a Gold Award for the National Parenting Publications Awards (NAPPA). 

About Topsville

New York based Topsville offers retailers a breath of children’s fashions that extends to all product categories, moving beyond its private label expertise into Branded and Licensed collections. They develop children’s wear for newborn through girls 716 and for boys, new born through 820 size ranges. With over 35 year’s experience, Topsville prides itself with being a leader in manufacturing and design of children’s apparel. Topsville is a division of Jaclyn Incorporated.