Travel to Mars! Be a Rover!

Posted on August 7, 2016

Have you ever wanted to be a Mars Rover? Sure everyone has.  You get to analyse rocks all day, hang out with Matt Damon and occasionally send a photo that is  guaranteed to have a billion souls peeing their pants a little.

To celebrate the fourth anniversary of the creation of the Mars Rover, NASA (via Gamee) have released a simple and cute side-scrolling game simply called Mars Rover.

“Search for water as your game rover climbs up and down hills to explore Mars. Drive carefully! One crater crash, and it’s ‘game over’ for your rover!”

And yes, that is pretty much the game: move slowly, and then crash.  Rocks and hills are your enemies and will lead to the destruction of your little Rover.  Thankfully you move a bit faster than the 2 inches per second that a real Rover can achieve.

The upcoming  Mars 2020 rover will be able to search for water using radar with a tool called RIMFAX.  I have to say though that I found water within five seconds of playing the game so I expect NASA to do the same in their upcoming mission.

In all honesty, the game isn’t great (maybe not even good), and is very similar to the short and sweet Google page games that are developed to celebrate milestone events.  But kudos for NASA to trying and I am sure it will make for a great school room resource that combines education and a bit of fun.   There most certainly will be quite a lot of hype leading up to the Mars 2020 mission and the Mars Rover game at the very least gives a quick lesson on what this mission aims to achieve.

The Mars Rover game is available for free for desktop PCs, as well as for iOS and Android via the Games app.  Check out more information about the Mars Rover  and  download/play the game here.