.: 5 November 2015, Umea Institute of Design :.
The process of designing The Healing Game
The first part of the project was to Envision potential developments of nanotechnology and it’s impact. This vision was used as a guideline throughout the rest of the project. Next, a context had to be defined. In order to make a decision, I made a mindmap of provocative topics in society. Then, I developed concepts, which represented these topics and can become reality due to nanotechnology.
I presented early concepts in the form of realistic posters in order imagine them becoming reality.
Based on expert feedback, the project’s description and personal learning goals I decided to pick the concept of “Serious Game”. By creating a stop motion video I communicated my concept to external tutors and classmates. The fidelity and style represented the stage of the project well.
I created a stop motion video to communicate my concept to external tutors and classmates.
I approached the creation of the concept art and the development of the game mechanics as two parallel process, executed simultaneously. I decided to do this because both processes influenced each other. For example once I realized that the game design tool I was going to use had functionality to implement parallax scrolling, I took full use of depth in my concept art pieces. I starting to try out different platforms, ranging from real game controllers to an iPad. Some quick user testing made me realize that the game controllers were too complex for older people. Therefore I decided to design the game for iPad.
Some quick user testing made me realize that the game controllers were too complex for older people.
For the game mechanics I used a HTML 5 game maker tool called “Construct 2” because of it’s ease of use. I started by making a very quick prototype in which I explored with the controls and the parallax scrolling effect.
The gamemaker tool “Construct 2” enabled me to do very quick iterations.
To get inspired for creating a visual style I collected movies, images and animations about the human body.
Especially the movie “Fantastic Voyage” turned out as a great inspirational source. It succeeded in creating a very open, dynamic and imaginative environment.
An early visual exploration. I realized that this visual style was too playful to make it believable.
During my first iteration I tried out shapes inspired by spaceships and submarines.
I put a lot of effort into designing the game character. I found this very important because it was going to determine whether the player felt connected to the game environment or not. The game character was going to determine whether the player felt connected to the environment or not.
Only when I placed a playful and realistic game character side my side in the environment I realized that the player would feel more connected to a realistic object. Because of this, I decided to go for the pill inspired shape.
At the exhibition I presented my concept supported by a microscope. By putting a printed piece of paper under the microscope I “faked” a look into the game environment. It sucked the visitors into the story before starting to play the game.
By putting a printed piece of paper under the microscope I “faked” a look into the game environment.