Geography is fun and surprisingly addictive, especially if you have awesome map-based interactive online games at hand. Some of the games below can easily double up as awesome teaching tools or a great way to spend a family afternoon, while others simply let you blow off some steam. One way or the other, you need to give these games a go:
Ever since it was launched in 2013, GeoGuessr has been helping curious explorers to wet their travel feet as well as hone their investigative skills, all at the same time. The basic premise of this highly interactive game is that you will be dropped into a random Google Street View scene and you have to guess where you are. To do so, you can use Street View functionalities like zoom in and out or travel down streets looking for cues, street signs, etc. The closer your guess is, the more points you score. There are a ton of map scenes to choose from – specific countries, famous places, European stadiums, world capitals, etc.
Powered by Google, this fun online game first came out in 2014. You start with a bank of 1,000 miles and you answer questions by dropping a pin on the map at the correct location. In case your answer is not correct, you lose an equal number of miles. For example, if your answer is off by 58 miles, the same will be stricken off your bounty. For quick answers, you earn bonus miles. You can choose from a number of trivia categories: arts and culture, science and geography, sports and games, entertainment, etc. We especially love the fun feedback Smarty Pins gives with every answer: “You’re a human GPS (without the annoying voice)” or “Maybe you were thinking of another location. Or country. Planet?”
So, here’s the deal: You're just walking down the street minding your own business when you get kidnapped without warning and emerge in an unknown place. You have to guess where you are before the timer runs out on you. Like GeoGuessr, Pursued also uses Google Street View to power its puzzles, and you have to move around the screen to look for visual clues. The basic difference between the two games is that in GeoGuessr you don’t have to race against the clock. Also, Pursued gives you the chance to unlock several fan-made levels once you are done with the default ones.
MapsTD is a tower defense game that uses various overlays of Google Maps quite brilliantly for the gameplay. You can choose to defend any location in the world against the approaching army of enemies – your workplace, school, home or favorite club – and this is basically the highlight of this game. The game opens with four predefined routes leading to your selected location, though initially, the enemies use only one of them. Once all four routes open up, the game becomes really interesting and if you haven’t planned in advance, you may find yourself outwitted.
Now, this one is a fairly simple shoot-em-up game that allows you to turn any place on Earth into a virtual battlefield. The basic strategy game makes full use of Google Maps’ 45-degree angle view while setting you up for a tank fight with a computer opponent in popular world locations, like the Google HQ, the tower of Pisa, etc. Fire it up when you need to kill some time or are in the mood to decimate some bad guys!
Do you have a favorite geography-inspired game that you feel should have been a part of this list? Let us know in the comments below!
Ishveena is a geospatial enthusiast and a veteran of creating and managing compelling digital content for organizations and individuals. When she is not making magic at her desk, you are likely to find her exploring nature, eating her way through life, or binge-watching funny animal videos.Follow @IshveenaSing