This asteroid-zapping game might cure cancer

The free mobile game Play to Cure: Genes in Space was created at a madcap game jam hosted by Cancer Research UK to do just that: research cancer. You can get it for Android here and iPhone there and start blasting your way towards a cure. But listen how it works first.

The human genome is teeny tiny, but has generated a ton of data, and that’s where this game comes in. By flying through hoops and shooting down space debris, you’re actually helping researchers analyze which sections of the genome cause cancer. I gave it a whirl, and frankly, Starfox it ain’t. But it’s still a marked improvement over health games in the past, such as neuro-games that maps the nervous system. These games are starting to feel very close to Flappy Bird level of quality. And that’s great news, as I’m pretty certain that if Flappy Bird traced genomes, we’d be dancing on cancer’s grave.