Video game for learning and metaphorization of recursive algorithms

Video game for learning and metaphorization of recursive algorithms


  • Ricardo Inacio Alvares Silva Universidade Estadual de Londrina
  • Rosilane Ribeiro Mota Pontifícia Universidade Católica de Minas Gerais
  • Jacques Duilio Brancher Universidade Estadual de Londrina



Video game, Recursive algorithm, Metaphorization, Mental models


The learning of recursive algorithms in computer programming is problematic, because its execution and resolution is not natural to the thinking way people are trained and used to since young. As with other topics in algorithms, we use metaphors to make parallels between the abstract and the concrete to help in understanding the operation of recursive algorithms. However, the classic metaphors employed in this area, such as calculating factorial recursively and Towers of Hanoi game, may just confuse more or be insufficient. In this work, we produced a computer game to assist students in computer courses in learning recursive algorithms. It was designed to have regular video game characteristics, with narrative and classical gameplay elements, commonly found in this kind of product. Aiding to education occurs through metaphorization, or in other words, through experiences provided by game situations that refer to recursive algorithms. To this end, we designed and imbued in the game four valid metaphors related to the theory, and other minor references to the subject.

Author Biography

Ricardo Inacio Alvares Silva, Universidade Estadual de Londrina

Graduado em Ciência da Computação pela PUC-MG em 2010. Ingressou no programa de mestrado em Ciência da Computação do Departamento de Computação da UEL em 2011.



How to Cite

Silva, R. I. A., Mota, R. R., & Brancher, J. D. (2013). Video game for learning and metaphorization of recursive algorithms. Semina: Ciências Exatas E Tecnológicas, 34(1), 45–56.



Original Article

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