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2016 Archive: National Museums Scotland Launches a New Online Game in Partnership with Aardman

Tuesday 19 August 2016

National Museums Scotland has launched a new online game featuring a lovable new character created in partnership with Aardman. The game allows players to use real objects from the Museum’s biomedical collections to care for a digital creature known as “Gen”.

National Museums Scotland Launches a New Online Game in Partnership with Aardman

National Museums Scotland has launched a new online game featuring a lovable new character created in partnership with Aardman. The game allows players to use real objects from the Museum’s biomedical collections to care for a digital creature known as “Gen”.

The launch coincides with the opening of 10 new galleries devoted to applied art, design, fashion, science and technology in a £14.1m project. Biomedical displays are a theme throughout the science and technology galleries, supported by funding from Wellcome.

Sophie Goggins, Assistant Curator, Biomedicine at National Museums Scotland said;

“This is one of a number of fun ways we’re using to introduce some fairly complex ideas of medical science to a wider audience. It’s been exciting to work with Aardman to bring Gen and our objects to life. We hope lots of people will get online to play and find it enjoyable as well as getting an insight into some of the amazing objects now on show in the National Museum of Scotland

Laura Chilcott, Senior Digital Producer at Aardman said;

“Gen is a truly unique game featuring a new, loveable Aardman character. This successful and enjoyable partnership with National Museums Scotland has been a great opportunity for us to use our skills both to educate a new audience, and also to enhance the museum’s biomedical displays. It also serves to further our work with the museums sector, where we have seen our technical and creative skills being a great fit!”

Rob Cawston, Digital Manager at National Museums Scotland said;

“It was fantastic collaborating with Aardman on this innovative project. With their passion for creating unique characters and stories with the technical expertise of the digital team we’ve created a new way to interact with the biomedical objects in the Museum collections. Everyone loves the Gen character and we’ve enjoyed the technical challenge of making the game playable across all devices.” 

Rather than launching an app to be downloaded, the game makes innovative use of technology enabling people to play the game on a smart phone, tablet or a desktop computer without the need to download it first.

As well as providing a fast-paced strategy game, Gen offers online gamers of all ages the chance to learn about biomedical objects now on display in the Museum – from wooden stethoscopes and early X-ray machines to the latest cutting-edge medical technologies.  As the little blobby creature falls sick players must select the right object to diagnose and then treat the Gen restoring it back to full health.

Play the game at


Further information contact Bruce Blacklaw, Press Office, National Museums Scotland on 0131 247 4165 or email

Notes to editors

  1.  National Museums Scotland looks after museum collections of national and international importance and provides loans, partnerships, research and training in Scotland and internationally. Our individual museums are the National Museum of Scotland, the National Museum of Flight, the National Museum of Rural Life and the National War Museum.  The National Museums Collection Centre in Edinburgh houses conservation and research facilities as well as collections not currently on display.
  2.  This £14.1 million project is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), Wellcome and the Scottish Government, as well as other major trusts, foundations and nearly 800 generous individual donors.
  3. The National Museum of Scotland reopened in summer 2011 following a three-year, £50m redevelopment. With over 8.5 million visitors since reopening, the National Museum of Scotland is the most popular museum in the country outside of London according to ALVA figures.
  4. Wellcome exists to improve health for everyone by helping great ideas to thrive. We’re a global charitable foundation, both politically and financially independent. We support scientists and researchers, take on big problems, fuel imaginations and spark debate.

    About AArdman

    Aardman, based in Bristol (UK) co-founded and run by Peter Lord and David Sproxton, is a world leader in animation. It produces feature films, series, advertising and digital entertainment for both the domestic and international market. Their multi-award winning productions are novel, entertaining, brilliantly characterised and full of charm that reflects the unique talent, energy and personal commitment of the very special people who make up the Aardman team. The studio’s work is often imitated and yet the company continues to lead the field producing a rare brand of visually stunning and amusing independent and commercials productions.

    Aardman Digital is the interactive division of the multi-award winning studios of Aardman Animations. Combining access to world-class directors, animators and story-writers with passionate creative minds, technical wizards and gaming geeks they bring the Aardman entertainment values to the propositions of external clients and partners. Aardman Digital has a wealth of experience in creating engaging online and mobile games, websites and social media campaigns for both entertainment purposes and combining integral learning objectives, for family audiences across a range of abilities. 

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