Quarantine is exhausting. We have to stay home, wash our hands often, be careful when we go outside, not panic-buy... The amount of information and recommendations that are given to the public seem enormous. That’s when we asked ourselves: “What if we could sum it all up into an app?”. One of our member’s younger sibling even reckoned: “What if we could sum it all up into an interactive game?”
What it does
Foresight is a realistic storyline game. Based on true statistics and recommendations of the COVID-19 quarantine situation, the player needs to survive by completing the challenges of precaution that comes in their way. Some can be avoided, while others cannot. As the player progresses, the options become trickier and the challenges become harder.
Foresight’s moral goal is to not only spread awareness of COVID-19 precautions but also to invalidate false or harmful behaviours: The challenges and probabilities featured in the game will be based on the research and statistic of and credible sources.
How I built it
Starting from our idea, we first planned out a multiple-outcome storyline using our creativity and our personal gaming experience. The programmer the software Thunkable to code and design the app. We used a lot of if/else statements to change the story according to the user’s choices and to change how likely it is to fail according to the number of lives he has left. The artist illustrated the storyline with the app Ibis Paint.
Challenges I ran into
The death scene was tricky: we didn’t want to misinform the public by automatically ending the game, but we weren’t too sure on how to raffle whether the player dies or not based on the statistics data we had. Luckily, we found a quick solution. According to our source, 0.2%% of people aged 20-29 die of coronavirus. 0,2% is one person out of 500. We would, therefore, generate a random number between 0 and 500. If the generated number = 1, then the player dies. Otherwise, they survive... For now? Immunity to coronavirus after overcoming it once has not been confirmed or denied yet. This brings us to our second difficulty: Making the game realistic. Sometimes, there’s not enough information on the coronavirus because of the recentness of the events, which can make certain scenes of the storyline ambiguous.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
We’re proud of having independently found a way to make probabilities for the outcome of the storyline. The black-and-white graphics’ style also give a somewhat refreshing simplicity and quirkiness to the game, giving more space for the player’s imagination. Overall, we really like our game because we spent a lot of effort and distant teamwork making it.
What I learned
The programmer learned how to make probabilities with a software that doesn’t contain any function for this. The artist, on the other hand, learned how to use a non-pressurized disk-tip stylus pen. She also learned the existence of alpha selection on Ibis Paint and how to use it. We also learned that working in a team and separating the work is the most effective way to get things done!
What's next for Foresight
Our next goal will be to complexify the storyline and make the game more realistic. To do so, we will need to add multiple playthroughs and do more research on COVID-19. This will encourage the player to play Foresight multiple times and spread awareness. We also want to add multiple playthroughs based on the age the player declared he was so the game would be more accessible and fun.
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