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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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SCVNGR app makes NMSU a virtual playing environment

The world of gaming and the physical world we move around in have come crashing together and Aggies can now take advantage. New Mexico State University is participating in SCVNGR, a gaming platform whose goal is "to build the game layer on top of the world."



02/24/2011 A screen shot from the Android application SCVNGR. (photo by Harrison Brooks)

SCVNGR is a phone application that can be downloaded and used to complete treks, score points, participate in challenges with (or against) friends, and earn rewards. When using the app, one can type in a location and search for local challenges nearby or look up friends and participate in activities together like social check-ins.

Recently NMSU used SCVNGR during Aggie Welcome Week. Once students downloaded the app or texted the short code, for those without an iPhone or Android phone, they began completing treks and challenges. A trek is a series of challenges that are put together and usually designed to take players around a specific location. As challenges are completed, points are earned.

One of the challenges for the "NM State University" trek is to take a picture of the tyrannosaurs skull in Zuhl Library and send it to SCVNGR. While completing certain challenges, students sometimes get information about their location. For example, after completing the challenge at the Activity Center, a text is sent advising about the AC's weight room, climbing wall and indoor racquet ball courts.

Points can be used for discounts and other offers from businesses that have created treks or challenges. Right now if a student completes most of the challenges for the "NM State University" trek, they can get a prize from the admissions office. In the near future, NMSU Campus Dining and Barnes & Noble at the NMSU bookstore will offer various discounts as well.

Anyone interested in playing SCVNGR can visit http://prospective.nmsu.edu or look for it on the app store on their phone. Any university departments or nonuniversity businesses interested in using SCVNGR can contact Megan Schuller at msch@nmsu.edu.