Vice Verba: Fun and Games in Latin 

Roman in a toga; illustration from Vice Verba Latin game

Christina Vester (PhD ’04) and Pauline Ripat (PhD ’03) have transformed their fond Seattle memories of playing Latin and Greek verb conjugation games in class into a lively and appealing – and free – game for Apple and Android devices. Working in collaboration with coder Darren Osadchuk and illustrator Rick Sealock, Christina (Associate Professor of Classical Studies at the University of Waterloo) and Pauline (Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Classics at the University of Winnipeg) have recently released Vice Verba to help students of Latin master verb forms. Students can select which verb tenses, moods and voices to work with. Correct responses earn togas and allow the image of a famous Roman to be unlocked. The game is inspired by “Hoplite Challenge Cup”, a non-digital game created by Hardy Hansen and Gerald Quinn.  “In development for the digital medium, we had to change a number of aspects of game play,” says Pauline,  “since it turns out that non-digital games do not translate to the digital medium as seamlessly as we had initially thought!” “Teaching games - and sharing them - was a big part of our education at Washington,” says Christina. “I’m putting this on my phone right now,” said a UW Latin student recently after seeing the game in action.

Vice Verba has been downloaded more than 2000 times and has received compliments from players in Canada, USA, Sweden, Scotland, and the UK. The team is at work on the sequel, a Greek verb game called Hoi Polloi Logoi.

Check out the game here

for iPhone and iPad:

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/vice-verba/id702387117?mt=8 

and for Android devices:

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.ludicroussoftware.viceverba

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