Welcome to Innervative!
This Singapore-based video game company makes financial and economic education games, where I worked over the summer of 2015. Over the few months I was there, I wore multiple hats. I performed market research on Southeast Asia and the US, focused digital and physical marketing for their recently finished game, Future Nova, and worked with Cedric Tan, the senior creative designer on the user interface for the game Arconomics.
For Future Nova the marketing director, the dedicated marketing intern, and I wrote posts for Facebook and Twitter and marketed in-person to passersby in the Silicon Valley of Singapore, using games of chance and showmanship to intrigue potential users.
The majority of my work was for Arconomics. For this game, I was first tasked with mocking up wireframes of every screen in the game. I utilized research into resolution of mobile devices for both visual clarity and touch sensitivity in order to determine the minimum size of buttons and text in particular. I also researched other mobile games and role-playing games to determine how they solved or didn’t solve design problems. Leveraging this knowledge, I collaborated with Cedric and the lead game developer to ensure all screens would hold the information players would find relevant. At the same time, I was tasked with finding fonts for the game—particularly those that hinted at the complicated mix of cultural influences present in the game, from Middle Ages Western fantasy to Aztec coinage and stone work and Mongolian hides and clothing—and were easy to read. After searching through thousands of discounted or free fonts, I presented the top options to Cedric and together we selected the winner.
After first designing the wireframes to be clear on the smallest phone the game would be presented on, I provided notes on the design decisions to allow our technical director and others coding the UI into the game would have a clear idea of how each element should be placed on screen, evolving to fit with various phone sizes and resolutions.
My next task was to work on emoticons for the game to represent the different reactions non-player customers in the player’s shop might have to his/her wares. My first instinct was to play with how money ‘talks.’ Using a cartoonified version of the coins I saw Cedric create for the game, I created the initial image on the far left. We quickly realized this look was likely too complicated, and would limit our ability to use color to give added hints to the states of customer satisfaction I had been given. Thus I went back to work and simplified the design, removing the outer coin shape and leaving the face of the coin in a speech bubble per Cedric’s direction.
But at this point the face was too isolated to really convey the original idea. And so the emoticons were simplified even further—and the customer states adjusted as I had recommended—to symbols expressing anger (at not finding the item they were after), shock (over an unexpectedly high price), approval of the price, and finally happiness upon purchase.
I was also charged with a few tasks for the company as a whole, one of which was designing a company t-shirt to be worn at conferences and events. Below are a few of the t-shirt designs I created followed by the final one that was chosen.
I also designed a poster for booths at conferences, featuring all the games that had been or would soon be completed.
All in all, my time at Innervative was fascinating and informative. Thank you to all my coworkers who showed me around the city and told me what to eat. It was a blast.