Author Topic: Prototype of a game designed to teach memory techniques  (Read 449 times)

I have recently finished making a prototype of a game designed to teach memory techniques ( to quote the title... )
Wikipedia article on one such technique

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DOWNLOAD PROTOTYPE: (8mb, .zip, 10-30 minutes playtime ) (EDIT: reduced tutorial to 1/3 its original size, still not perfect)
DOWNLOAD (old, ignore)
DOWNLOAD (current)


The game is quite experimental, and all feedback is welcome.
My big question is, though:
IS THIS GAME WORTH WORKING ON TO CREATE A FULL GAME?
I thought it was a good idea to get feedback before I make any more of it.

« Last Edit: 07 Jun 2018, 07:03 by QCPolmer »

VampireWombat

  • Not a chupacabra
    • I can help with animation
    •  
    • I can help with backgrounds
    •  
    • I can help with characters
    •  
    • I can help with play testing
    •  
I only played until the guy drops the woman off. But I'd say the game does have promise.
Of course you need to give more details for me to properly gauge the game. What's the target audience? I assume kids, but what age of kids?
Here's one piece of advice I learned on Friday when re-watching the Arabian Nights miniseries with John Leguizamo. You need to hook your audience at the start. Your introduction shows possibility, but is vague and doesn't give any useful information. What's the name of the town? What's the character's name? And maybe you should at least hint at whatever paranormal/supernatural event happened. Maybe show a short glimpse of it before the guy starts talking.
Anyway, I probably said more than I should have. But I'd say yeah, keep going with it. Maybe play some edutainment games and work on the pacing and some of the other things I said. And most importantly, find someone the intended age to play it.

Okay... Then I decided to try a bit more and made the mistake of viewing the chain memory tutorial. Everything about it was unpleasant. There's no reward for getting anything right. You insult the player for getting something wrong. And there's no way to get out of it without closing the game or finishing it. I suggest completely scrapping it and working it into the game more organically. And don't insult the player. Especially if it's supposed to be a child that you want to learn something.
« Last Edit: 06 Jun 2018, 15:43 by VampireWombat »

Thank you so much for trying it out!

As far as tutorial, I'm sorry for the unpleasant experience.
If I pursue this project further, I will probably merge it with the first direction memorization exercise.

The demographic... oh... I actually was planning on targeting a somewhat older audience. (as what I had planned involved some horror elements...)

What I was going for was a game worth playing that happened to have some learning elements ( as the core gameplay mechanic. )
Hence, I'm not sure if it's possible to get this game to work.
I have already learned a lot involving the art and from using AGS, so I figured it might be a good idea to change projects sooner rather than after building a full game.

VampireWombat

  • Not a chupacabra
    • I can help with animation
    •  
    • I can help with backgrounds
    •  
    • I can help with characters
    •  
    • I can help with play testing
    •  
You're welcome.

And it's alright. It just needs to be done differently. Maybe by example instead of by questions.

And I guess I assumed kids since learning like that tends to be targeted towards kids.

You could still use the mnemonic stuff as game play, just be more subtle about it.
The game could still work, it just needs some changes and polishing.

Pling!

  • plong
Hi, i have played the demo yesterday up to the point where you have to repeat words in order to proceed, but I got stuck in a loop there. I think your design shows potential, personally I'd prefer a more subtle approach. Like designing more of a test-your-memory-skills game where the memorizing element is just a tool to provide immersion to the story than the actual learning device. With the memory techniques being more of a hint if you fail. I myself didn't even learn properly at school, I only remember what is interesting to me so I have less information to organize in my brain :-D So to me memory techniques are too specific, I can always take notes ;)

One idea I have is a glimpse at a (crime)scene for a short period of time where you have to put together elements of it afterwards. A collegue or a boss who is questioning you afterwards could work, maybe a notebook you need to keep could do the job, too.
The remembering of words could fit in a scenario where you listen to suspects talking or a phone call. Describing features of a suspect for a phantom image is another possibility.
Coming up with enough scenarios for a whole game where memory techniques are the main theme is tough though.

All in all I think it is a good idea for a game, and fits well with the genre, the art is to not break immersion too much if you choose to create tension with a story.

About the question of it being worth being worked on further: if it's fun for you and you learn things that are interesting to you along the way then yes. A creative project you are working on is a great way to structure your creative flow per se.
 

You're welcome.

And it's alright. It just needs to be done differently. Maybe by example instead of by questions.

And I guess I assumed kids since learning like that tends to be targeted towards kids.

You could still use the mnemonic stuff as game play, just be more subtle about it.
The game could still work, it just needs some changes and polishing.

As far as the target audience, I can completely see how you got there.
I had a 'your learning to tie your shoes' line in there...

And yes, a different type of tutorial (point and click mini game or something) is definitely needed.
I want the project to be a game FIRST, teaching tool second, but I do want it to be a valid way to learn something.

Hi, i have played the demo yesterday up to the point where you have to repeat words in order to proceed, but I got stuck in a loop there. I think your design shows potential, personally I'd prefer a more subtle approach. Like designing more of a test-your-memory-skills game where the memorizing element is just a tool to provide immersion to the story than the actual learning device. With the memory techniques being more of a hint if you fail. I myself didn't even learn properly at school, I only remember what is interesting to me so I have less information to organize in my brain :-D So to me memory techniques are too specific, I can always take notes ;)

One idea I have is a glimpse at a (crime)scene for a short period of time where you have to put together elements of it afterwards. A collegue or a boss who is questioning you afterwards could work, maybe a notebook you need to keep could do the job, too.
The remembering of words could fit in a scenario where you listen to suspects talking or a phone call. Describing features of a suspect for a phantom image is another possibility.
Coming up with enough scenarios for a whole game where memory techniques are the main theme is tough though.

All in all I think it is a good idea for a game, and fits well with the genre, the art is to not break immersion too much if you choose to create tension with a story.

About the question of it being worth being worked on further: if it's fun for you and you learn things that are interesting to you along the way then yes. A creative project you are working on is a great way to structure your creative flow per se.

First, thanks for trying it out!
Second: sorry about the tutorial, it needs replacement. (I did cut it back a lot in the current download as a temporary fix.)

As far as the memory techniques being used a motif used for immersion, 
I do want to genuinely give the player something they can use after playing.
(That being said, if someone wants to write stuff down to just get to the story, that's cool... )

As far as puzzles go:
Yeah, I have plans for using a basic memory palace (for taking notes on stuff like a crime scene).
Coming up with scenarios is really not much of an issue.
Memory Sports competitions already did that for tasks: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Memory_sport
Those guys are nuts, memorizing decks of shuffled playing cards in under a minute nuts.
« Last Edit: 08 Jun 2018, 04:32 by QCPolmer »

Pling!

  • plong
The new tutorial is much better, gets to the point quicker. What would really add to it is little scribbled visualisations for even quicker grasping.

I made up my mind about the concept, it is a cool and interesting theme for a game and I think you're approaching it nicely. I'm looking forward to see you progress with the game. But: please don't make it much scarier than it already is, the 'charming elderly woman' creeps me out already... :P

A really practical use for these techniques would be vocabulary of a foreign language if it's possible imo.
 

The new tutorial is much better, gets to the point quicker. What would really add to it is little scribbled visualisations for even quicker grasping.

I made up my mind about the concept, it is a cool and interesting theme for a game and I think you're approaching it nicely. I'm looking forward to see you progress with the game. But: please don't make it much scarier than it already is, the 'charming elderly woman' creeps me out already... :P

A really practical use for these techniques would be vocabulary of a foreign language if it's possible imo.
Thanks again for trying it out!

As far as the scribbled visualizations, agreed, that would be preferable.
I think I am going to have a drag and drop mini game with that, as I can think of a practical way of doing it.

The horror elements... Yeah... I'm sorry to inform you but it's going to get pretty dark (not particularly gory, though).

I wasn't planning on doing bits for a foreign language, but I've heard that it works.
I don't use that technique myself for languages, but I'll look into seeing if I can describe how memorizing vocabulary would work.
If your interested, the following is an article on how it basically done, (the actual method is under the "The right way: have fun and use your imagination!" heading)
https://www.fluentin3months.com/imagination-your-key-to-memorizing-hundreds-of-words-quickly/
There are a lot of variations of this same method.
Also, it is best used to vastly speed up a regular study session, so some basic studying will probably be needed.