Monthly Archives: July 2014

Spanish Game Night @Ninefold

Last Thursday, we held a Game Night where we beta tested a complete version of our Spanish language learning game ¡Dígame!

It was held at the Ninefold San Francisco office, who hosts our web application and has a few Spanish learners who work there.

It was great fun. Here are a few photos from the group who played with the “starter” deck:

Andrew came up with a great way to show “This is an apple” by miming an archer shooting something on someone’s head! This William Tell reference was immediately understood by everyone.

Let us know if you would like to host a game night!

QR Code Success!

Reading QR Codes in ¡Dígame!We first developed the ¡Dígame! card game as a paper prototype for our new mobile app. Translating the game play from a mobile, social video-based game to real life worked surprisingly well.  When the idea arose to integrate video via QR codes on the game cards, I worried that the scanning delay and mix of phone and card game would interrupt the game play and cause the game to be less fun.  One of the biggest challenges in software design is that people say that want something, but they can’t realize all of the implications, so you can give someone what they ask for and have that end up as something that doesn’t improve the experience and can be distracting.  Due to this uncertainty, we launched our card game crowdfunding campaign without the QR codes and agreed to play test them before making the final decision on whether to include them.

Last week, Glen organized a group of people who had little or no Spanish language ability.  They played ¡Dígame! and had a lot of fun.  With a QR Code on each card, linked to a video of a native speaker saying the phrase expressively, sometimes with gestural hints, plus having the translation into English , the “fear factor” of being immersed in this new language was greatly reduced.  Each person was challenged to teach a phrase, acting it out like Charades. Even if that person had to learn from the English translation in the video, the rest of the group learned through the immersive quality of the game, decoding meaning by watching and using their own gestures while only hearing and saying the phrase in Spanish.

The feature of QR codes linked to expressive videos on the phrase cards has been a big success so far and adds a fun dimension to the game. This week we’ll be recording our latest revisions of the game phrases and creating links and QR codes for each phrase.  Today is the last day to pre-order the game on Indiegogo: