Coronavirus (COVID-19) Simulations

Simulations and models can help us understand how the COVID-19 coronavirus disease spreads throughout the world’s population. As the SARS-CoV-2 virus infects people around the world, we can better grasp the rate of infection and of recovery by testing different scenarios with models. Our intuition is not effective for understanding complex systems with significant lag times; simulations and models of the COVID pandemic provide more accurate insights about the progress of the disease and our efforts to slow its spread.

Disease Spread - Animated Graphs - Washington Post

Several authors have written articles or produced videos showing animations and other visualizations that illustrate the spread of the COVID coronavirus disease. Check out the links to their articles, videos, simulations, and animations below!

COVID – Educational Games & Simulations

Several educational games and simulations illustrate how infectious diseases, such as COVID-19, spread throughout a population. Some games allow you to try your hand at slowing or stopping the spread of a disease. Can you stop the spread of a disease like COVID in time?

Annenberg Learner Disease Lab

Annenberg Disease Lab

The Habitable Planet curriculum includes an interactive Disease Lab simulator. The lab includes four diseases: Kold, a caricature of the common cold; Impfluenza, which resembles influenza; Neasles, with the high transmission rate of measles; and Red Death, a fast-spreading epidemic with a high mortality rate.
Bio Inc. - Biomedical Plague game

Bio Inc. – Biomedical Plague

Bio Inc. is a simulation game in which players assume the role of a disease that is trying to kill a patient. Select diseases, risk factors, and factors that inhibit recovery to make your victim as ill as possible. The Windows PC version also allows you to role-play the doctor that tries to save the patient.
Game Doctor logo

Game Doctor

Game Doctor is a Scottish-based studio focused on developing games and interactive technology for science and health education. Their games include Killer Fungus: Evolution (for iOS, Android, and Mac & Windows computers), Bacteria Combat (for iOS and Android), and Fungal Invaders (for iOS and Mac & Windows computers).
Infection - Bio War game for mobile devices

Infection Bio War

Players become the disease in Infection – Bio War as they try to wipe out the world’s population before a cure is found. This app for iOS mobile devices (iPads and iPhones) allows players to choose traits for their disease, helping it to spread.
Pandemic Board Game

Pandemic Board Game

Pandemic is a cooperative board game for 2-4 players. Each player assumes the role of one of seven specialists who work together to try to halt the spread of a global pandemic. Several expansions and spinoffs have been developed since the publication of the original game in 2008.
Plague Inc. Disease Traits

Plague, Inc. – Ndemic

In Plague, Inc. the player takes on the role of a disease and attempts to infect and wipe out the entire population of the world before humans can develop a cure.
MedMyst - Rice Web Adventures

Rice Web Adventures – Health & Medicine

Games in the Web Adventures series enable players to explore medical and health topics, including microbiology, body systems, neuroscience, and forensic science. Web Adventures include: MedMyst (infectious diseases), CSI: The Experience (forensic science), Reconstructors (substance abuse & neuroscience), Virtual Clinical Trials (medical research), and Neuropolis Squad (alcohol & body systems).
Solve the Outbreak - CDC

Solve the Outbreak – CDC

Become a CDC Disease Detective in Solve the Outbreak and try to save lives as you solve clues and stop outbreaks of disease. Level 1 has twelve outbreak scenarios, while level 2 has eight more.