Level: Advanced/ Mature students
Location: Computer Classroom
Skills Focus: Reading/ Writing
Game: Dark Visions
You arrive at a strange house with a mysterious doctor who introduces himself as James Thaxton Smith, an assistant to your uncle who is the doctor at this psychiatric hospital. He sees you to the guest room where you are to stay but time passes and you soon get bored waiting. Explore the house and discover dark secrets and strange goings on. Can you solve the mystery before it’s too late?
There is a lot of text in this Flash game so treat it as a reading for pleasure activity. If students get too frustrated with the puzzles and are finding it difficult to progress in the game then point them towards a Dark Visions Walkthrough, which they can open in a separate browser.
- This pre-play activity is optional and you could argue worth dropping. It does spoil the game itself some what by giving plot spoilers. However, it does engage them with reading a lot more text while familiarising them with how to play the game. I downloaded a copy of the Dark Visions walkthrough (see Downloads below) and made a copy for each group of 8 students. I cut the walkthrough up into each chapter (nine in total) and gave them out but keeping the one that said ‘The End’ back.
- Each student reads their text to themselves and then takes it in turns to paraphrase it to their group.
- Once they’ve done this tell them to figure out the correct order. That is, the original order. For this reason keep an original uncut copy of the walkthrough. Monitor and help with any language questions. Encourage them to answer the questions posed in the walkthrough even if it is just predicting the answer.
- Feedback and get students to discuss any differences first with other groups and then, if necessary, with the original copy.
- Students can use their knowledge of the walkthrough, a printed copy of the walkthrough or an online copy of the walkthrough to play the game.
- You may want to point out that you leave the guest bedroom by walking towards them. They then use the three icons to look at things (1. eye), perform an action such as pick things up (2. hand) and walk (3. the figure). As they collect things these things will appear in their inventory.
- Students discuss what they thought of the game.
- Write a review of the game.
- Write a new report of the events that happened in the game.