Captain Novolin is an educational platform video game, starring the eponymous superhero who has type 1 diabetes. It was developed by Sculptured Software and published by Raya Systems for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. The game became available to the public in 1992 and was sponsored by Novo Nordisk, makers of the Novolin brand of insulin. It is a part of educational video game series from Raya that includes Rex Ronan: Experimental Surgeon, Packy and Marlon and Bronkie the Bronchiasaurus.
Gameplay and plot
The game uses a 2D side-scrolling style of gameplay. Captain Novolin is the only one who can stop such evil aliens as Blubberman and rescue the diabetic mayor of Pineville who was kidnapped by evil aliens. Throughout the game, Captain Novolin needs to avoid the alien invaders who have the appearance of junk food items such as bouncing cookies and doughnuts while eating healthy meals to keep his blood glucose within a safe zone. Captain Novolin can die if his blood glucose level goes too high or low. Players can earn bonus points by correctly answering questions that relate to diabetes. In addition, the game has a feature whereby a diabetic player can specify the frequency of their real-life insulin injections.
Richard M. Satava mentioned an evaluation of the Captain Novolin game that involved the interviewing of 23 diabetic children (10 boys and 13 girls in the age range of 6 to 16 years) and the parent of one child on an individual basis. Boys and girls were enthusiastic about the game, and several children said that the game would be useful when telling their friends about diabetes. The game was met with approval from all of the parents in the evaluation and was considered to have value for facilitating discussions with children about diabetes. Barbara M. Hayes and William Aspray mentioned an evaluation of the Captain Novolin game that involved a number of diabetic children in the age range of 8 to 14 years, along with the parents of the children. Participants said that the game could help parents and children to talk about diabetes, along with children talking to their friends about the subject.
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- Hayes, Barbara M. and Aspray, William (2010), Health Informatics: A Patient-Centered Approach to Diabetes, MIT Press (retrieved via Google Books), p. 135, retrieved 2010-11-18