„Power Planner“ is an educational game about the challenges the renewable energy sector is facing. The game was developed with our partner LerNetz for ABB Switzerland, one of the largest builders of Swiss power plants and is intended for use in Swiss school classes.
It conveys the player, that the energy consumption is subject to heavy demand fluctuation depending on the time of day and peoples' routines e.g. high energy consumption in the evenings. While, in the past, it was rather easy to provide a constant stream of energy from nuclear power plants (all other potential problems aside) the efficiency of most renewable energy forms depends on external conditions such as the weather: Solar power, for example, is very inefficient at night, obviously, or when the sky is clouded.
In Power Planner, the player is introduced to most forms of renewable energy and, over the course of the game, learns how to produce them by building specific power plants. In each level, he is then presented with a daily energy demand curve he is supposed to match as closely as possible with the energy he produces from the different plants. As the curves become more complex and the weather conditions wind and solar power depend on more complicated, the player has to cover energy deficits with pumping plants to successfully cater to the fluctuating energy demand. The final challenge then, of course, is to deliver a complex energy supply curve without the use of any nuclear power at all.