OT: Doko Desu Ka -- HoloLens language learning concept

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OT: Doko Desu Ka -- HoloLens language learning concept

Postby Bart » Fri Aug 25, 2017 9:11 pm

Something I spent all my free time on during the past week or two (besides staring at Fighting Vipers 2 machine code until my eyes bled): Doko Desu Ka.

What does everyone think? Does this idea have potential? I came up with it as a way to learn how to understand spoken directions. If you've ever studied a foreign language, you'll find immediately that the single chapter on directions (or any other topic) is woefully inadequate for comprehending actual real people. Seems ripe for a game. The only problem is, this game is going to get tedious very quickly. Any ideas?

Note: although the male voice samples are mine, I don't actually know any Japanese nor am I studying it :) Long story. This game idea can go with any language pair, though. The coding is a mess and partly hard-wired still but I'd like to get it to a releasable state, which I estimate would take a couple months of focused effort.
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Re: OT: Doko Desu Ka -- HoloLens language learning concept

Postby Ian » Sat Aug 26, 2017 2:12 am

Bart, you have way too many skills ! haha :)
It looks good, but I think if people are trying to learn basic language you need to make it simpler? Kind of one word answers to start so if people are guessing based upon where the character goes. Ie guessing left or right, then later on you can could add things like, take 2nd or 3rd left ?

An element of punishment might be fun. If you make too many wrong turns maybe pacman could come eat you, or a missile from space blow you up ¦¬)
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Re: OT: Doko Desu Ka -- HoloLens language learning concept

Postby Toshiko » Sun Aug 27, 2017 3:43 am

First thought: "Wow, his name is way easier to pronounce than I thought!"

Second thought: "Eh, who needs pants?"

Third thought: "Best pronunciation I've heard from someone who professes to not study the language."

Fourth thought: "You know, this is a really cute idea with a cool execution."
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Re: OT: Doko Desu Ka -- HoloLens language learning concept

Postby Bart » Sun Aug 27, 2017 8:36 am

Ian wrote:Bart, you have way too many skills ! haha :)


Ah this was nothing -- it's all in Unity and I purchased the graphical and musical assets. Although it's not my value-add, I have to develop my 2D and 3D art skills because having to rely on pre-existing assets really constrains my ability to execute on ideas.

It looks good, but I think if people are trying to learn basic language you need to make it simpler? Kind of one word answers to start so if people are guessing based upon where the character goes. Ie guessing left or right, then later on you can could add things like, take 2nd or 3rd left ?


100% agreed. I think starting with north/south/east/west, forward/back, left/right, would be the right way to go. Then slowly add in patterns. I'd like to have a little virtual blackboard appear on a wall near the user, listing new vocab and grammar patterns as they are introduced as a sort of cheat sheet or reference. A near life-sized virtual instructor/narrator could also be placed in the room.

An element of punishment might be fun. If you make too many wrong turns maybe pacman could come eat you, or a missile from space blow you up ¦¬)


I hadn't thought about that but you're right. It needs this in order to be an actual game. I'm not exactly sure what fits best here, though. The obvious thing is to have a count-down timer and to lose the current delivery route if you make too many mistakes. Or, maybe a competing AI courier? My dad suggested the buildings should explode if you don't get to them on time, turning the game into some sort of an evacuation game.

Another way to think about it is in terms of rewards. Perhaps the players should get some sort of reward at the end of successful runs that can be used to do something fun/non-learning related. Like maybe the bear has a hobby he pursues in between deliveries. Maybe he tends a garden or is building his own town. Maybe he's actually an alien and needs to purchase back pieces of his crashed ship from the town's pawn shop. Maybe the hot air balloon that I placed in the town could be used for some sort of Pilotwings-style minigames? Or, maybe the whole premise should be a mystery, where the bear inspects packages and discovers some foul play afoot in the town, and somehow has to identify a villain or otherwise foil the plot. But that's veering off into significantly more complicated territory and I'd like to keep the idea as basic as possible so I can complete it within a couple months.

Any more ideas are always welcome :)
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Re: OT: Doko Desu Ka -- HoloLens language learning concept

Postby Bart » Sun Aug 27, 2017 8:43 am

Toshiko wrote:Second thought: "Eh, who needs pants?"


Ever had to do a webcam interview? They're the most ridiculous thing. I did one years ago in grad school for an internship. I decided to wear a long-sleeved button down dress shirt but stuck with gym shorts or sweats below, knowing they'd never see anyway :lol:

Fourth thought: "You know, this is a really cute idea with a cool execution."


Thanks! It's really just a big experiment. I think the idea sounds good but we'll see if the execution really pans out. The big concern is that the game will get tedious and boring quickly. Hence, I like Ian's idea for a punishment system to game-ify it further. I don't play many games these days so my imagination is a bit stilted when it comes to that sort of thing. I used to study Mandarin and when I actually had to put it to use in Taiwan, asking for and understanding directions or doing relatively simply things like booking a hotel over the phone (necessary for cheap local hotels) or ordering a taxi from a hotel front desk were challenging. They could generally understand me but understanding them was much more difficult. One area I think AR can really shine is situational learning. What you learn in class or through a textbook for any given topic is just too limited, whereas a game could potentially incorporate a wide range of speaking styles and responses to practice on.
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Re: OT: Doko Desu Ka -- HoloLens language learning concept

Postby Joaquim Gonçalves » Tue Aug 29, 2017 10:28 am

Bart just kicking ass again.
Great job!
Domo Arigatoo. :ugeek:
Waiting...
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