Chester Zoo select Glow to create Orangutan game
19 August 2014
Orangutan Jungle Run will go live in time to mark International Orangutan Day on August 19.
Chester Zoo is launching an irresistibly fun online game which people all around the world are free to join in.
Orangutan Jungle Run will go live in time to mark International Orangutan Day on August 19. Hopes are high that anyone who plays it will also be spurred on to help the zoo’s forthcoming Go Orange for Orangutans fundraising appeal which will run throughout October.
Melanie Cowieson, Chester Zoo development manager, said: “International Orangutan Day is about raising awareness of the desperate plight of critically endangered orangutans in Borneo and Sumatra. So it’s the perfect time to officially launch our Orangutan Jungle Run game.
“The idea is that as people engage with the game they will become increasingly aware of how important the rainforests are for orangutans to survive. While the message is extremely serious, the game is also fabulous fun and so simple to play that we’re hoping it will be a hit with children and adults alike.”
The free-to-play game sees an orangutan swinging through a forest. Players are in control of how fast and how far it travels. A regularly updated leaderboard lists the highest scoring players with points to be gained for the amount of ground your orangutan covers, its longest jump and the number of vines it uses in any one movement. To have a go visit www.actforwildlife.org.uk
The game can be played by all ages from five to 85 and on all platforms from a smartphone to a PC.
Orangutan Jungle Run was specially designed for Chester Zoo by Liverpool company Glow New Media who report that feedback from trial runs has been hugely positive.
“Designing it was fun to the point of distraction!” laughed Phil Blything, director of Glow New Media, which is based in Liverpool’s historic Cotton Exchange Building in Bixteth Street.
He and co-director Thom Shannon founded the company about seven years ago to provide professional web-design, educational software, mobile apps, e-marketing, design and branding services to clients across the region. They have worked with prestigious clients including Tate Liverpool, Liverpool Cathedral, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, and Merseyrail.
Phil said: “This orangutan game was at the other end of the spectrum from some of the core projects we usually do, but we had the best of briefs, which was to keep it as simple and playable as possible.
“That is always the best option with online games like this. Sometimes there is a temptation to over engineer things, giving players so many routes to go down that they get confused. But our experience has proved the most popular games are those with a clear uncomplicated objective. In this game that objective is to swing through the trees in the most athletic and agile way you can. What more fun is there to be had?”
Orangutan Jungle Run can be found on Chester Zoo’s Act for Wildlife website where there are also further details about the Go Orange for Orangutans appeal. The game also has a link to the appeal included on its opening banner page. The zoo wants individuals, schools, businesses and community organisations to arrange or join in orange-themed fundraising events in October to help orangutans battling for survival in Sabbah, Borneo.
Melanie explained: “About 80 per cent of woodland once occupied by orangutans has been destroyed over recent decades. Our goal this October is to raise enough money to replant a key area of forest. We have set a fundraising target of £15,000, as it costs £10 to buy the seed, plant out and nurture each sapling to maturity, and we hope to finance the cost of 1,500 trees. Anyone who wants to help can register their support or make a donation at www.actforwildlife.org.uk/orange.”