WASHINGTON -- NASA has launched its first multi-player online game to test players' knowledge of the space program. Who was the first American to walk in space? Who launched the first liquid-fueled rocket? These are only a few of the questions players can answer in Space Race Blastoff.
Available on Facebook, Space Race Blastoff tests players' knowledge of NASA history, technology, science and pop culture. Players who correctly answer questions earn virtual badges depicting NASA astronauts, spacecraft and celestial objects. Players also earn points they can use to obtain additional badges to complete sets and earn premium badges.
"Space Race Blastoff opens NASA's history and research to a wide new audience of people accustomed to using social media," said David Weaver, NASA's associate administrator for communications. "Space experts and novices will learn new things about how exploration continues to impact our world."
NASA chose to make the game available through Facebook to take advantage of the social media site's large audience and enable players to compete against others. Individuals also can play solo games.
Once in the game, players choose an avatar and answer 10 multiple-choice questions. Each correct answer earns 100 points, with a 20-point bonus to the player who answers first. The winner advances to the bonus round to answer one additional question for more points.
Correctly answering the bonus question earns the player a badge.
Space Race Blastoff was developed by Scott Hanger, Todd Powell and Jamie Noguchi of NASA's Internet Services Group in the Office of Communications. Play the game now at http://apps.facebook.com/spacerace.
- end -