Skip to Content

#InsideProdigy: How our Game Team made learning EVEN MORE fun with Treasure Track!

Prodigy Careers Blog


  • Prodigy Culture
no image

Prodigy’s Math Game team recently launched a cool new feature—Treasure Track—to motivate students to practice even more math through fun and exciting daily, weekly, and seasonal quests which unlock amazing in-game rewards. We spoke to Tiago Tex Pine, the Product Owner of game feature development squad ‘Magikarp’ to learn more.

Tiago—explain to us what Treasure Track is?

This is a completely new way for players to have fun learning math with Prodigy. We already have the main campaign, as well as other side-quests like Crystal Caverns, but we wanted to create something fresh that would reward the most dedicated students. It’s our take on the battle pass system seen in other games, but with an educational angle. The only way you can advance through these new quests is by answering math questions, which is core to our battle system. Rewarding kids for answering math questions can never be a bad thing! Once they complete their quests, they are rewarded with items including currency, buddies, pets—including some classic Mythical Epics and pets that haven’t been available for a while. We’ll have daily, weekly and seasonal quests, so there will always be something new for players to explore. Rewarding exploration of the game is a core part of this, so we can help players uncover places they’d maybe never gone before—which leads to more fun, more motivation, and more questions answered.

Where did the idea come from?

This is really tied very closely to our mission to help every student in the world love learning. We want to keep this as a fun experience, and reward and further motivate students who come back to practice more math. In some games, you finish the game—beat the boss or whatever—but have no reason to come back. We have to give them a reason to return, because that’s how you keep the student learning. So we want to keep the game fresh and exciting, so it feels new and different whenever a player comes back—whether it’s been a few days or a few months.

What were some of the technical challenges in building this?

Once we’d completed phase one of this in December, some developers—including people who had been at Prodigy for years—came to me and said this was the biggest thing they’d ever built! It was not as complex as things like our reworked Battle System, but with the sheer amount of systems we had to put in place like progression systems, the rewards, the interface and then connect to the game and optimize for performance, that was huge. Then behind the scenes we had an entire backend that had to be built. All that made it even more satisfying when we launched.

How excited was your team to ship this?

We were all so excited. The best part was pushing it live, and then going to the online Prodigy forums for students to see what the early reaction was. There was so much excitement there among students—they were going crazy for it, and it was fun screenshotting all those public comments and sharing them with the team. That made it extra rewarding for the team to see that. Rather than pushing it live and hearing nothing, we got an instant reaction, and that’s why we build these things, for the students.

What has been the student reaction so far?

The reaction has been massive. There was the reaction in the forums, but we’ve also seen more math questions being answered and great activity on the Treasure Track. So we have the data as well as the anecdotal evidence that kids are really responding to this. If we can keep creating an experience which gets them excited about practicing math, that’s huge. And we don’t stop here. We’ll continue to work on this feature and making it better and better.

What else is the Magikarp team working on?

Seasonal content is going to be a big part. We will have a summer season coming up with new pets to be rescued and perhaps new Mythical Epics too. We’re also looking at bringing in more social play into Prodigy, so kids can battle much easier with their classmates as well as their teachers. That’s going to be a lot of fun.  

Anything to add?

Just that this was a real team effort. We have an incredibly smart and hard-working team who all pulled together, so I’d also like to thank the game developers on the Magikarp squad in our Math Game Team who made Treasure Track happen, including Sarah, Camila, Megan, Laura, Katelyn, Mayu, Ravi, Nick, Max, Sebastian, and Jeffery.

Learn more about Treasure Track here!