Listen. Understand. Create.
XIWEN studio designs and creates digital and immersive experiences aimed at communication and formation, using smart games and virtual reality. I worked on the production site in Nantes (France), in collaboration with XIWEN Lab, the R&D site located in Lyon (France). The studio also has sites in Paris and Poitiers (France), in Brussels (Belgium) and in Tokyo (Japan).
My mission as an intern (6 months) was to participate in the design and production of their smart games on the Unity game engine.
An Educational game, EVAsion
My first assignment was EVAsion, an educational game aiming to improve visual attention. It was commissioned by the CNRS for their project Fluence. Fluence aims to develop and validate innovative digital devices that can be used in the classroom as educational tools to help prevent and remedy reading and English learning difficulties.
We created four mini-games for touch tablet, that exercise visual attention when playing. We design them based on the research of the Laboratory of Psychology and NeuroCognition (LPNC) in Grenoble (France), constantly in dialog with XIWEN Lab. The challenge was to meet educational expectations while creating a fun experience for children. The core mechanic of all the mini-games is to identify letter sequences and associate them with an action. The difficulty of the games had to adapt to the profile of each student, in order for them to get better at each exercise, without becoming bored. We designed procedural generated levels for each game, using dynamic difficulty adjustment (DDA).
The Letter Catcher: The student must move the character to catch the letter sequences appearing in the instruction.
Ghost Letters: The student must click on the pairs of ghosts forming the requested letter sequence.
The Word Tower: The student must open the doors indicated by the correct sequence of letters.
The Letter-eating Castle: The student must remove the obstacles to allow the only eggs carrying the right flag to enter the castle.
A VR Escape Game, Mission 13
In the second part of my internship, I had the chance to be responsible for the first VR games of the studio, using my experience acquired at Beam Me Up Games.
Mission 13 is an educational VR escape game for the training of managers on the themes of collective intelligence, cooperation and leadership. It takes place in a physical fake space shuttle and can be played from six to nine players. Each player is given a role (Pilot, Copilot, Navigator, Radio Engineer, Radar Engineer, Drone Engineer) and will have to face challenges together as a team. Behind the scene, the game saves their results, and an examiner observes them through a camera to evaluate them.
We created several puzzle games, each one with different controllers and displays (triple screens, flight controllers, potentiometers, keyboard, mouse, touch tablet, VR Headset, Headset) and using physical objects from the shuttle. We designed the puzzles to be multiplayer, needing the collaboration of several members at the same time, with a time limit to put them under pressure.
A VR game for a museum, Mission On Mars
Mission On Mars is a VR educational game exposed at the Espace Mendès museum in Poitiers (France). With a virtual reality headset available, the visitor is transported to the planet Mars. Particular care has been taken to ensure the fidelity of the returned virtual environments. I designed and implemented VR gameplay mechanics, and use them in different missions. The fifteen missions proposed allow the player to travel to different places on the planet and acquire a lot of knowledge about Mars.