Play the Knave in South Africa

Earlier this fall, Professor Gina Bloom took the augmented reality video game Play the Knave on the road to the Thuto-lore Comprehensive School in Sharpeville township, an hour outside Johannesburg in South Africa. 


“I also demonstrated the game to staff at an after-school program in Alexandra township and left a kit with them to use this month,” Bloom reports.  


Bloom developed Play the Knave with her English colleague Professor Colin Milburn and a collaborative team of faculty from across the disciplines as well as talented undergraduate and graduate student researchers in the UC Davis ModLab


In the game, a Kinect motion capture camera lets players use their own bodies to act out scenes from Shakespeare’s dramas, karaoke-style. 


The game has been demonstrated around the nation and the world, but this is its first showing in South Africa. 

Thanks to a generous donation from retired teacher and UC Davis alumna Margaret Bowles, the UC Davis English department has run a program to bring Play the Knave into Northern California K-12 schools as well.