ULG AB is a Swedish company that specializes in learning games development, production & marketing. The Client was looking for ways to facilitate the language studying process. In 2015 they decided to create a game that would make language studies more engaging and help students learn English through game situations.
Our game developers thoroughly analyzed the idea and project requirements. The goal was to fulfill all the high-level requirements (including individual study, syllabus, progress evaluation) while keeping the game engaging for students. So, the Minnits game development was based on the following pillars:
- Fascinating story-based plot
- Colorful graphics
- Adjustable difficulty for tasks
- Students’ progress assessment
- Different forms of communication training
- Availability on all devices and platforms
Students submerge into the world where Minnits and dragons once used to live peaceably together. The railway destroyed the environment in which dragons used to roam freely that made them jittery, angry & extremely dangerous. Students play for a hero called Wheeze that must find dragons and rescue the Minnits from the current chaos.
We combined different game types (quest, shooter, and slot machine) to drive more user engagement. Students pass various challenges, talk to every NPS they meet on their way, perform their requests, and get the information they need to fulfill the mission. And it’s all solely in English.
- Students can play whenever they like – in class or at home – with their progress being tracked in the game and available for a teacher
- Players can move forward at their own pace and spend as much time as they need for each task thus fitting both quick learners and meticulous persons
- Students fill in the Achievement blanks after each quest that allows them to easily understand their progress and inspires them to perform more
- The teacher can see how far each student has moved through the dialogues and the story, together with the amount of time they have spent inside the game
As players advance in their mission, they need to perform more and more complex tasks in line with the implied linguistic progression. This progression develops from relatively simple dialogues with a tangible content to conversations that are more abstract in nature. The game includes over 6K most common questions & statements needed for efficient communication in English.
We also complemented standard dialogues with in-game quizzes. They allow to train multiple language skills, including those related to instructions following and comprehension improvement:
- Tooltips: the game includes small information windows where NPCs interact with the player thus teaching students to follow oral and written instructions (this element of the syllabus is often missing from traditional teaching materials)
- Minnit Slot Machine: every scene is followed by a slot machine quiz that helps students practice major phrases and statements from the scene (the slot machine contains from 6 to 40 sentences and the idea is to find 3 different picture images that represent the statement)