When it comes to getting kids to eat vegetables, most parents need all the help they can get. Some parents resort to ridiculous lengths to ‘hide’ the vegetables in each meal whereas other parents just can’t seem to do anything to get their kids to eat their veggies. Of course the problem is, that parents can only keep an eye on what their children have to eat for a percentage of the time. The objective for most parents is for their children to like vegetables and that way the parents could be confident that children will make sensible meal choices even when they’re not at home. Enter the computer game; Food Practice Shooter.

Light-Gun Game Encourages Kids To Eat Vegetables

Eat To Reload

Food Practice Shooter is a light-gun shoot-em-up game where the player shoots carrots, peppers and tomatoes with a huge plastic gun that lights up like downtown Tokyo. As with any game, the player’s ammo will run out but with Food Practice Shooter, the only way for a player to reload is to chew on the appropriate vegetable snacks – literally.

The game comes with a table with 3 snack pots that have been placed on digital scales within the table and a headset that links to the computer. When the player needs to replenish ammo, he must select the proper pot that relates to the particular ammo, take out a snack and chew it quickly. The scales will tell the computer that the snack has definitely been taken while the headset measures distance between it and the player’s cheek to see when they’re chewing. Finally, before the game is resumed, the player should stare into the camera on the computer and smile.

Associating Happiness With Veggies

The developer of the game, Takayuki Kasaka from Japan’s Insitution of Technology`    believes that by animating vegetables and getting children to smile after they have eaten the veggie snacks, children will start to associate eating vegetables with happiness and begin to want to eat vegetables more often.

Because of the large amount of equipment needed to run the game, it’s unlikely that this will become a household game. Instead, Kasaka plans to take it to food events and have it placed in schools to help as many children as possible.

[Image via Polygon]