Daytona Beach, FL - A local teacher looking to help his students blow off some pandemic-related steam creates a video game where players can blast away COVID-19 as it descends on a very familiar setting.
Robert Hernandez is a chemistry teacher at Seabreeze High School. Like other teachers, Hernandez was looking for a way to help take his students' minds off the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
He's already completed some small projects, such as making a special temporary tattoo for his classes, but there was one particular project he was excited about.
Hernandez told News Daytona Beach during an interview that he always wanted to make video games. After learning how through a program called GameMaker, Hernandez was able to bring his latest project to life, a video game about destroying COVID-19.
The game is called "Seabreeze High School COVID Clean." In the game, players control the "Spunky Doctor Teresa" as she battles COVID-19 viruses throughout a school while vaccinating students.
"I was looking for an inspiration for a project to do," said Hernandez. "I couldn't think of anything better than to have my kids blast the crap out of COVID viruses as they descend down on Seabreeze High School."
The setting of the game might look familiar to some, that's because—as Hernandez said—it's the Seabreeze High School campus. Some of the characters might look familiar too. The playable character is actually modeled after Hernandez's wife and the students found in the game are modeled after friends of Hernandez, who are also teachers at Seabreeze.
When players start off, they must use Doctor Teresa to pick up a vaccine. From there, they can jump around the level and vaccinate the students found around the school. One nifty feature in the game is players must hit the students twice with the vaccine, mimicking the real-life Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, which require two shots.
Players must also use Doctor Teresa to battle the COVID-19 viruses found around the school campus. And watch out, if you touch one of the viruses, the level is over.
While this all might seem like fun and games, the game does have some meaning behind it. The game is meant to help students blow off their pandemic-related frustrations, as they're one of the groups that lost a lot to the ongoing pandemic.
"They're losing prom, they're losing Grad Bash, they're losing a lot of the stuff that was the staple of high school for the past 50 to 75 years," said Hernandez. "They deserve to blow some steam off."
"Everything passes," added Hernandez. "Eventually this stuff passes. The trick is to not to come out of isolation weighing 100 pounds heavier than before. Make the best you can of it."
The game can be played for free online. Click here to check the game out for yourself.