Nelson Mandela spent 18 of his 27 years in prison in Robben Island, a place so restricted and secretive that no photos of Nelson Mandela were taken for years. Now, in an attempt to educate South Africa and the world about Nelson Mandela and the struggles of apartheid, the Mandela 27 project is now underway, in an attempt to spread the story of Robben Island and its most famous prisoner.
The main idea is to teach people in South Africa who were born after apartheid ended about their shared, collective history.
According to The Guardian the game being made is a "serious game", and is being developed by South African students with help from the Serious Games Institute at Coventry University. The game will be developed in the style of a graphic novel.
"The story of the cultural events hasn't been told," said Jacqueline Cawston, a Director at the institute. "The way that we're telling it will be engaging to an audience that hasn't read history books and weren't alive at this time. The whole point of the project is to get the message out there."
Werner Ravysewerner, another partner in the project, said that creating a video game will better engage younger students.
"Serious games work very well in engaging young people in learning," he said. "This graphic novel will depict life as it was on Robben Island. We are making use of students to create compelling material."
Robben Island was used as a prison as early as the 17th Century, and was also used as a leper colony at one point. The history of this island is important, and it's brilliant that the people in charge have decided to use the medium of games to tell its incredible story.