The Photonic Trail

Welcome to the Photonic Trail!

The Photonic Trail is an immersive quantum optics single-player game that allows anyone from beginners to seasoned pros inculcate quantum optics concepts through game play. It is a treasure hunt with six missions that span the basics of quantum optics.

About the Game

QFT Demo

The Game Objective

Become a Master of Light and find the Hilbert Spade.

You are an adventurer in the Enchantic Realm. You seek the Hilbert Spade, an ancient, magical artefact that kingdoms once warred over before it was hidden away. They say the person who wields the Hilbert Spade can travel anywhere in spacetime by simply digging a small hole in the ground. They also say that only a Master of Light is worthy enough to attain this treasure.

In order to become such a Master you much traverse the ancient Photonic Trail, overcoming any obstacles in your way. Each successful mission takes you one step closer to becoming a Master of Light, one step closer to finding and wielding the Hilbert Spade.

Quantum Optics

Play with an interactive virtual quantum optics lab.

Quantum optics is the field of how light quanta called photons interact with atoms and molecules. In this game you will learn all about photons, laser light, qubits, quantum superposition, and quantum entanglement.

Each mission in the game involves an interactive virtual lab in which you will be able to conduct experiments as if you are in a physical quantum optics lab! Each lab is powered by Quantum Flytrap.

The Tools


Here's what you'll need!


We recommend using a desktop laptop, or tablet for the Photonic Trail. Basically a device with a large horizontal screen.


You will need a treasure map, of course! Each mission page already has a map on it for your reference, but if you would like a printable version, you can find a PDF downloadable here.

Headphones (optional)

You will find a "Recommended Listening" box on each mission page that provides an auditory ambience. It is not a requirement for the mission that you listen to it, but we recommend you do for an immersive experience!

How the Game Works

Each mission is a location on the map, and has a unique webpage. Each webpage is divided into two parts: 1) a story corresponding to your journey on the Photonic Trail and 2) a virtual quantum optics lab powered by Quantum Flytrap.

You will complete the lab according to a specific question. A Google form is embedded at the bottom of each page, where you will be required to submit your answer for evaluation. A correct answer will reveal the password to the next mission's page. An incorrect answer will encourage you to try again with a hint.

We have prepared a dummy form for you to try out here:

After you submit your answer click on the "View accuracy" button, which will look like this:

Depending on your answer, you will see one of these two responses:


Once you have the password to unlock the next mission's webpage simply click on the link to the next mission, enter the password and carry on!

If you encounter a Google form error like "redirected too many times" you may need to clear cache and cookies. 

For any issues please email

Important note: there is no option at this time to create an account and save your progress. We suggest you keep a record of the passwords you discover so that you can easily navigate to where you left off. You can find the links to each mission at the bottom of this page or in the PDF downloadable we provided above under "The Tools" section.

Ready to Play?

Remember to share your progress, your achievements, your thoughts, screenshots, whatever you want to share with us! Tag us at @qplaylearn on Twitter and use the hashtag #QPLHunt!

Already started?

If you're returning from some time away, first off: welcome back! We have the links to the rest of the six missions here for your convenience. Simply jump in where you left off!


Radha Pyari Sandhir (Concept, Stories & World Building, Physics)

Sibel Kantola (Art & World Building)
Caterina Foti (Physics)
Daria Attila (Physics)
Quantum Flytrap team: Piotr Migdał, Klem Jankiewicz, Paweł Grabarz


Hear what our artist, Sibel Kantola, has to say about the illustration process!

Ringbearer font by Pete Klassen. Creative Commons iconography from: Dyah Kusumaningrum, The Icon Z.


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