Articles | Volume 5, issue 4
Geosci. Commun., 5, 325–337, 2022
Geosci. Commun., 5, 325–337, 2022
Research article
 | Highlight paper
11 Oct 2022
Research article  | Highlight paper | 11 Oct 2022

The potential for using video games to teach geoscience: learning about the geology and geomorphology of Hokkaido (Japan) from playing Pokémon Legends: Arceus

Edward G. McGowan and Lewis J. Alcott

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Cited articles

633highland: Lake Toya Toyako Hokkaido (photo), Wikimedia Commons, (last access: 8 March 2022), 2013a. 
663highland: Lake Kussharo seen from the west, in Teshikaga, Hokkaido Prefecture, Japan, Wikimedia Commons, (last access: 25 June 2022), 2013b. 
Adams, P. C.: Teaching and learning with SimCity 2000, J. Geogr., 97, 47–55, 1998. 
Akai, F.: The Terminal Pleistocene Microblade Industry In Hokkaido (Japan): A Case Of The Southern Ishikari Lowland, Kunstkamera, (last access: 24 February 2022), 2008. 
Ayalew, L., Kasahara, M., and Yamagishi, H.: The spatial correlation between earthquakes and landslides in Hokkaido (Japan), a GIS-based analysis of the past and the future, Landslides, 8, 433–448,, 2011. 
Executive editor
This work is an accessible illustration of the way geo-science is present in the everyday environment experienced by many people, so may be of interest to the broader education community or wider public.
Short summary
The fictional landscape of Hisui from Pokémon Legends: Arceus is inspired by the real-world island of Hokkaido, Japan. This paper illustrates how the game can be used to explore geological concepts including volcanology, economic geology, and hazard mitigation, by comparing in-game features to their real-world counterparts on Hokkaido. Applications from this study include increasing geoscientific interest and facilitating the self-learning or formal teaching of geoscience worldwide.
Final-revised paper