Duckie Deck try to diversify the range of children’s games by creating educational yet entertaining apps for the young audience. They offer something for everyone – for fussy eaters, for animal lovers, and for toddlers terrified by monsters lurking in the dark.
Duckie Deck is headed by Marek Przystaś. His first attempts to create games for children date back to 2005. The company was founded in 2012 and has an increasingly rich portfolio. It is guided by the desire to develop educational apps for children aged between one and six which are both instructional and simple to use. As Przystaś says:
We joke that we sell parents free time and a clean conscience. [http://foch.pl/foch/1,132039,15515151,Gry_komputerowe_jako_narzedzia_terapeutyczne__Polak.html]
The games are designed by an interdisciplinary team: in addition to programmers and graphic designers, specialists in child psychology also play an important role. Przystaś emphasises that their products operate on two levels: on the one hand, they deal with relevant practical challenges such as learning how to use the potty, and, on the other, they are based on the theory of multiple intelligences in order to comprehensively enhance the skills of the child, ranging from the feeling of emotions to the development of creativity. Duckie Deck also take care of the visual side of the applications, using colourful graphics, which are nevertheless far from childish.
The apps by Duckie Deck tackle issues important to young users: they help them cope with fears or explain them why it is worth performing such trivial tasks as cleaning. Gotta Go! talks about the act of excretion in an unpretentious and entertaining manner using the example of a friendly monster that must first be fed, and then taken to the toilet. Thanks to the sympathetic Monsters, which become amusing once the lights are on, children are able to tame their fears, especially the common fear the dark. Animal Feeder shows the nutritional preferences of animals, teaching the child that appetites can vary greatly. Greengrocer allows children to realise where vegetables come from, how they are grown and how they travel before reaching our plate, stressing the importance of their presence in our daily diet. The player is supposed to collect fruits and vegetables, and later eat them. Sandwich Chef, in turn, may change the eating habits of even the pickiest eater. The simple rules based on the preparation of meals encourage users to create their own food compositions, while the attractive sandwich decorations seem to appeal to children and inspire them to apply their knowledge to everyday situations.
Despite the strong educational element, Deck Duckie do not lapse into the patronising tone of an ex cathedra lecture. Most of all, they offer clever, fun games. Yet some of their games also explore more elusive topics, such as their Magic Games.
Duckie Deck works with giants such as McDonald’s. Their games are available in the kids’ corners in restaurants.
Author: Agata Morka, April 2015, transl. Bozhana Nikolova, May 2015
Duckie Deck’s official website.
Selected exhibitions and awards:
- Polish Design in the Middle of, Dutch Design Week, Eidenhoven
- Launch Education&Kids Finals
- T-Mobile Startup Challenge
- SXSW Education Finals, Texas, USA