Hot on HuffPost Tech:

See More Stories
Engadget for the iPhone: download the app now
AOL Tech

Sprocket Rocket is a Wallace and Gromit themed brain teaser -- Time-Waster


Intellectual property is one of the most hotly debated subjects online. Should there be patents or not? And what can be patented? And once you have a patent, when is it fair to protect it?

But to argue about these things, everyone should have the terminology down. What exactly is a patent? And what's a registered trademark? And what, then, is a registered design (which I did not know)?

Sprocket Rocket is a Flash game that attempts to provide a basic education in these terms while showing the value of innovation at the same time. It does all this, and it still manages to be fun!

You control a little "space pod" (my term, not theirs), and your mission is to collect cogwheels for Wallace and Gromit so that they can assemble their space ship and go to the moon. Yeah, it's dorky, but it's well-made!

Each level is a puzzle. To solve a puzzle, you often need to build a "tool" for your space pod. There's an editor where you can make simple tools that attach to your ship, and they are used to push, hook, and prod things on the screen. It's very open-ended, and it sometimes requires a fair bit of thinking. You need to shape just the right tool for the job, and then you have to figure out how to use it in the level.

Bottom line: Sprocket Rocket is very nice brain teaser, and the website that it's hosted on is worth browsing through, too (it's related to the UK's Intellectual Property Office). If you don't feel like leaving Download Squad, just keep reading this post -- the game is embedded right after the fold!

Tags: fun, intellectual property, IntellectualProperty, sprocket rocket, SprocketRocket, timewasters, wallace and gromit, WallaceAndGromit