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845K download for Windows only. Free. Runs in a DOS window on Win95 to Vista. Comes with Players' Guide and Teachers' Guide as PDFs.
Windows executable installer
Windows Installer (Windows 95 and later)
BBC Micro version
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Teacher's Guide
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by Peter D. Killworth


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(based on 2 ratings)
1 review

About the Story

From the Topologika website (retrieved September 2012):

'GiantKiller' is a classic (i.e. text-only) and tongue-in-cheek Maths adventure game based on Jack and the Beanstalk. It's aimed at 8 to 14 year olds - yes, really - although older children and adults may enjoy it too.

In 'GiantKiller' you take the role of Jack (or Jackie) to buy a pig! Unfortunately they've all been sold, so you can either go home in disgrace, or spend your groat at one of the market stalls on which - with luck and some sound mathematical thinking - you’ll win a magic bean. Early puzzles focus on calculator, space and co-ordinates, moving into tessellations, topology, and mapwork. Explore all the locations, make a map, find the treasures and see how many points you can win. Like most of our Maths software, 'GiantKiller' is an amusing diversion from 'Numeracy' and a chance to explore Maths in a 'different' way. It's a great activity for parents and children to discover together (with no test at the end), and what's more it's .....

A Little Bit of History

'GiantKiller' was the first title we released way back in 1987 on the brilliant BBC Micro. Its author, the late Peter Killworth (oceanographer and social network pioneer) resisted all requests to add pictures, believing that we all learn best from the images we make in our heads rather than viewing someone else's.

Download it (845Kb, for Windows only)

It's here, it's FREE, and it runs in a DOS window on Win95 to Vista. You'll also get the Players' Guide and Teachers' Guide as PDFs. We won't nick your email address or track you in any way - promise - but you might like to donate to the Motor Neurone Disease Association which researches the illness that claimed Peter.

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Number of Reviews: 1
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful:
Pleasantly surprised: some clever puzzles, April 11, 2017

I was pleasantly surprised by this game. (I wasn't expecting much: a non-Infocom game from the 80s with an educational focus.) Yes, the parser is weak. Yet this was not a source of frustration: The game was clear enough on what you needed to do at each point that I had no "guess-the-verb" problems. It also comes with a player's guide that lists all verbs recognized by the game.

The puzzles are the game's main strength. Several are quite clever, getting into mathematical topics like tessellations, Eulerian paths, and prime numbers. I never felt like the puzzles were unfair - either for adults or for the intended audience of 8-14-year-olds. In fact, I could easily imagine a class of students bunched around a computer, saying "Try this!" and "What about that?", as they work through the game together.

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