Game Learning is planning a September to remember by releasing our third educational video game!

As our first video game set on the West Coast of the United States, “The Gold Rush,” transports players back to Coloma, California in 1847, where gold was first discovered.

Players can expect to mine for gold, and help build up the town of Coloma, while lining their own pockets with riches.  In addition, players are encouraged to recognize the following educational take-aways.

The Gold Rush Was A Multicultural Social Event

The discovery of gold attracted people from around the world. However, it was also an event with a legacy of racism, through excluding non-whites from mining, and through extreme violence waged against Native Americans.

The Gold Rush Came With an Environmental Price Tag

Mining for gold, like mining for anything changes the natural environment, often laying the foundation for future disasters including floods, disease, and bad harvests. The Gold Rush video game also invites players to examine the concept that rapid settlement, often means reckless settlement, with repercussions to follow.

The Gold Rush Played a Role in the Lead Up to Civil War

As new territories were gained from the Mexican American War, existing debates about slavery were reignited.  As the result, Southern states were uneasy about welcoming a new free state.  Fortunately, at the California Constitutional Convention, a decision to abolish slavery was made.

The Gold Rush Was Powered by Unique Geography

California’s unique geography as utilized during the Gold Rush, prompted the flow of raw resources including gold and wood, from rural peripheries to urban centers.  Likewise, California’s abundance of minerals and metals discovered in the mountains were routed to populated areas.  The transfer of these resources was contingent upon the rivers in California, which would connect regions, helping to shape the future development of cities.

In Game Learning’s Gold Rush educational video game, players can expect to play as a fictional character-Keith Derby- who has recently fought in California’s Bear Flag Revolt.  He stays in California to witness the discovery of gold.  Playing as Keith Derby, players will:

  • Mine for gold
  • Help build up the town of Coloma
  • Navigate social relations and a diverse set of migrants come to California.
  • Manage natural disasters, which occurs in response to environmentally damaging mining techniques.

We can’t wait to bring The Gold Rush to life for young players, in just a few weeks!  To subscribe to Game Learning’s newsletter, click here.

History comes alive with Game Learning’s educational video games.  With engaging, fast-paced educational video games focusing on pivotal moments in history, players draw upon their natural curiosity, while nurturing soft skills, problem solving, and historical thinking.  Contact us at

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