case western reserve university



Case student develops booming on-line game


As if the World Wide Web doesn't offer enough ways to kill time, a Case Western Reserve University student has come up with another one—and it's a doozy.

John Tantalo, a junior computer science major in the Case School of Engineering, has put on line a game called "Planarity." The object of the game is to untangle a set of cris-crossing lines so that they no longer intersect. The game times players, and automatically moves them to the next level after they've successfully unraveled a puzzle. The game has an infinite number of levels—and the same capacity for causing frustration.

Tantalo developed the idea for Planarity along with his girlfriend Mary Radcliffe, mathematics major from Western Michigan University. Since going live in early July the game has become a big hit among bloggers and on-line gamers, receiving an average of 60,000 players a day and with links to more than 220 other Web sites. One blogger describes it as "an elegantly simple game with gratifying and addictive gameplay."

Planarity is online at


About Case Western Reserve University

Case is among the nation's leading research institutions. Founded in 1826 and shaped by the unique merger of the Case Institute of Technology and Western Reserve University, Case is distinguished by its strengths in education, research, service, and experiential learning. Located in Cleveland, Case offers nationally recognized programs in the Arts and Sciences, Dental Medicine, Engineering, Law, Management, Medicine, Nursing, and Social Work.