Crusades for a cause - 301166686

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 Team:

Christie Wong 301145526
Peter Tang 301155835
Michelle Lee 301117075
Jesica Chu 301166686

CRUSADES FOR A CAUSE

Abstract

Our project “Crusades for a Cause” is a multi-player card game that will allow users to be involved and comprehend the impact of social media and strategic methods implemented behind a successful campaign. This project’s objective is to help people gain an understanding of how social media is used to raise awareness, spread the word, and how to successfully lead a campaign such as Kony 2012. Key concepts such as social network, medium employed, interpretation of messages, as well as design method were developed for a better understanding of this type of campaigns. “Crusades for a Cause” is important because players will be able to understand how complex campaigns such as the Kony 2012 were so effective in reaching people from around the world to join, but mainly learning it through an interactive and enjoyable card game. In addition, it is important to keep it mind that this is a contemporary and ongoing issue. This game will allow everyone to get an opportunity to experience the different strategy methods that can be implemented to successfully create a campaign.

Project Narrative

This project’s originality and creativity comes from the fact that is an interactive multi-player card game that allows players to gain a substantial understanding of the impact of social media in our society and the design methods behind a successful campaign. The game will be entitled “Crusades for a Cause” to show how the amount of people combined in a movement or campaign can make a big difference when trying to raise awareness and to communicate a message for a specific cause.

Our objective is for players to gain an understanding of the strategic methods implemented behind a successful campaign such as the Kony 2012. For participants to comprehend how a successful campaign is executed, they have to understand several key concepts. One of the key concepts is the idea of people networking for a common cause through social media in which the Internet has become an everyday technology and has taken an increasingly significant role in social relations of various types including those between individuals and between individuals and organizations (Gane & Beer, 2008). Social network’s key feature is that it focuses on patterns of relation between and among people rather than simply among machines (Gane & Beer, 2008).

Another crucial concept is the medium in which the message is presented because in the case of Kony 2012, “a film is uniquely equipped to record and reveal physical reality” (Kracauer, 1960) which show us events that we would normally be incapable of seeing or notice as a result of several situations (Sweeney, 2009). Not only that, but also the filmmakers can decide the camera angles, the kinds of shots, and the content; therefore, the filmmakers decide on how they want to encode a certain message and how to present it (Sweeney, 2009 & Hall, 2008).

Moreover, for the case of Kony 2012, the interpretation of the message and the type of media presented are important aspects of the campaign because it is directly related to the audience. Regarding the interpretation of the message presented, the audience is both the ‘source’ and the ‘receiver’ of the video message (Hall, 2008); consequently, the message in the video can be decoded differently depending on how the viewer perceives it. Furthermore, we are determined to explore effective design methods and decisions that will increase our influence in the users and on our society.

In addition, the card game will allow players to choose among several options in order to illustrate how decisions will affect the success and rate of diffusion of their campaign. The main goal of this game is to gather as many people as possible to support your campaign by collecting specific cards to earn point, where each point equals to a million people. The game ends when one player reaches fifteen points, which is equivalent to fifteen million people.

The targeted audience for this project will be essentially teenagers and young adults due to their incredible involvement and knowledge about social media nowadays. Nevertheless, middle-aged adults and elder people will be suitable to play the game as well since it is a family oriented card game and they are frequently aware of current public issues around the world.

In this project, the main issue we will be focusing on is the Kony 2012 movement. However, there will be several other causes and campaigns such as the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA), and the Breast Cancer Association, just to mention a few, that will be included in our game to show similar approaches. The medium we will be presenting our project is through a multi-player card game for up to six players. The reason for deciding on a card game is for players to be able to experience and gain a great understanding of how social media plays an important role on successful campaigns.

For the creation and design of the game, we may encounter several problems such as deciding on the most suitable method we want to deliver the message for players to grasp the idea of the game and the message underneath it. Another problem might be deciding on the most suitable number of players in order to maintain the enjoyment of the game without making it lengthy and uninteresting before a player wins or finds the game dull. Additionally, we will have to analyze our game and decide the best way for any type of player to understand the rules and instruction of the game in the simplest and shortest amount of time. This is because although we will be targeting teenagers and young adults, we still want our game to be stress-free to play and enjoyable for the entire family.

Our vision for this project is for all players to be able to comprehend how social media plays a tremendous role in our daily lives currently and the impact it has in our society. Likewise, after playing “Crusades for a Cause”, users will get a better understanding of how campaigns are trying to target society for several causes such as breast cancer and animal cruelty as well as the design methods behind successful campaigns.

Some of the sources of inspiration for this project are the Kony 2012 video as well as the campaign, video responses about the original video, current global issues, interactive games, and traditional card games. This card game differs from others in the market because there are not similar games where the goals are to spread the word, create awareness about a current public issue to the rest of the ‘world’, and try to gather as many people as possible to join your movement and become the top campaign. Furthermore, our card game will teach players to interpret, think twice, and question the information presented by current and future campaigns as well as to help their emotions to stay away and not dominate their critical thinking skills.

Besides being an interactive, enjoyable, and educational game, it will also be a good conversation starter among the participants or with non-participants because they will learn how numerous campaigns work and how they try to gather people to join a cause. Not only that, but people can simply talk about their own experiences and anecdotes related to any of the causes and campaigns mentioned in the game.

Process

Firstly, we will draw out several potential models for our game and then we will decide as a team which model will work the best for achieving our goals. After that, using Adobe Illustrator, we will draw and perfection our model including all the cards needed for the game, and the packaging. In addition, we will arrange the cards correctly to be able to produce several cards on larger prints in order to get equally impeccable cards and a custom packaging box. Meanwhile, we will be getting other key materials such as paper for the game rules and instructions manual and clay for the creation of our game figures so that we can produce our first prototype game.

Afterwards, we will be printing out our instructions manual and cards at the SFU Document Solutions printing center, and creating our game figures out of clay. This first production of our game is our prototype game, which will be user tested later on to see if our game meets the requirements established previously. Lastly, if our game success in meeting all the requirements, we will be contacting the Chicago Playing Card Co., the Rolco Games Inc., the e-Print fast, and the Box Co-op companies to mass-produce the different elements for our card game.

For the success of this project, our team will be working closely to a timeline that contains detailed information of the actions we have to take, the progress of the production, and the overall research, which will be professionally prepared before we start the production of our card game. This will be achieved to guarantee that any further work will be done during the arranged time set for each specific task.

The first phase is the pre-production, which will be from March 8th to April 10th of this year. This phase is one of the most important sections for the success of the project because this includes all the necessary research for any further development of the game. Additionally, all the meetings will be scheduled in this phase for planning and the development of every member’s idea and the card game in general.

Subsequently, we have the production schedule, where each of the specific tasks will be developed deeply with a planned time schedule in order to stay always on track. At this point, we will primarily be creating our prototype card game for further tests. The scheduled time for the creation of the prototype and the users testing will be done from April 11th to April 16th, 2012.

Lastly, the post-production will slowly start after the prototype is done and will rise after April 20th, 2012. After that date, the mass production for our “Crusades for a Cause” card game will start. The reason the mass production is scheduled after the 20th is that we want to release our game to the public after the Kony 2012 movement, which will take place on April 20th, 2012.

Biography

As an aspiring interactive designer student from the School of Interactive Arts & Technology at the Simon Fraser University, I am aware of how social media not only influences our lives, but also current global issues. In addition, being a strong-minded, perfectionist, and dedicated person, it will allow me to achieve the proposed goals for this specific project.

As a result of several courses I have taken such as design, human-computer interaction and cognition, critical thinking, and entrepreneurial spirit, just to name a few, they will help me get prepared for different types of life projects like “Crusades for a Cause”. Besides having some formal training, I enjoy spending time working on several activities related to arts and craft, reading and searching current international news, as well as using social media such as Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. Furthermore, I have created and designed several arts and craft and user-centered projects for diverse situations; for instance, school projects, personal work, volunteer tasks, and portfolio pieces.

By having a number of different experiences and preparation throughout my life, I can create sophisticated work that will consist of all the necessary key concepts that will suit perfectly for each of my projects depending on the goals. On the other hand, in the case that I do not possess a valuable or required skill I will be willing to spend the time to learn any necessary skill for the best of the project, which will also allow me gain additional experience for future projects.  
Outcomes

After the creation of the card game “Crusades for a Cause”, not only as players, but also as a designer and artist, I will learn and benefit from it greatly in several ways. One of the benefits as a designer will be the numerous skills the will be developed during the creation of this card game such as leadership, problem solving, and group-effectiveness. However, these skills will not only be beneficial for me as a designer or artist, but also as a human being because I might need these skills for life situations. In addition, the skills I will acquire and develop from this project will help me significantly for the future, either for work or for personal purposes because I will be able to start new project with additional and improved skills each time.

As for the audience or players, they will benefit from it by gaining the ability to understand the usage of media, and the way of interpreting messages. Moreover, the players will be learning additional information and develop an attentive approach towards future campaigns. Another benefit is the fact that players will be learning other aspects related to the Kony 2012 movement itself and from the viral video, where some of these aspects are about how media affects us in a daily basis, and how the medium in which the information presented is important. Additionally, all these will be learned through in an enjoyable and interactive card game.

The media format for this project will be the physical card game and it will be presented after April 20th, 2012, which is the current scheduled date for the Kony 2012 movement to take place. The decision for the presentation of the project to be after the movement date was taken because we, as a team, thought that it would be the best option since people around the world will be aware and knowledgeable about the Kony 2012 movement.

Outcomes

After the creation of the card game “Crusades for a Cause”, not only as players, but also as a designer and artist, I will learn and benefit from it greatly in several ways. One of the benefits as a designer will be the numerous skills the will be developed during the creation of this card game such as leadership, problem solving, and group-effectiveness. However, these skills will not only be beneficial for me as a designer or artist, but also as a human being because I might need these skills for life situations. In addition, the skills I will acquire and develop from this project will help me significantly for the future, either for work or for personal purposes because I will be able to start new project with additional and improved skills each time.

As for the audience or players, they will benefit from it by gaining the ability to understand the usage of media, and the way of interpreting messages. Moreover, the players will be learning additional information and develop an attentive approach towards future campaigns. Another benefit is the fact that players will be learning other aspects related to the Kony 2012 movement itself and from the viral video, where some of these aspects are about how media affects us in a daily basis, and how the medium in which the information presented is important. Additionally, all these will be learned through in an enjoyable and interactive card game.The media format for this project will be the physical card game and it will be presented after April 20th, 2012, which is the current scheduled date for the Kony 2012 movement to take place. The decision for the presentation of the project to be after the movement date was taken because we, as a team, thought that it would be the best option since people around the world will be aware and knowledgeable about the Kony 2012 movement.

Budget

Our budget will be divided into two main portions, where the first portion will be used for the prototype, and the second portion will be used towards the mass production of our game. For the prototype, which will be printed out at the SFU Document Solutions printing center, we will need $30 for cardstock and printing, $15 for the clay to make the figures, and $1 for the paper that will be used for our instructions manual. Therefore, the total price that will be needed for the prototype will be $46.00 (SFU Document Solutions, 2012).

For the second portion, the mass production, we will be contacting several companies for our game’s different elements. The total amount of “Crusades for a Cause” sets we will produce will be 15,000 with two decks of cards in each set. To begin with, we will be contacting the Chicago Playing Card Co. to order a total amount of 30,000 decks for $0.92 each (Chicago Playing Card Co., 2012). In addition to printing, we will also be charged $110 for the four-color setup, which is the initial setup. At this point, our subtotal for the cards will be $27,710.00 (Chicago Playing Card Co., 2012). Aside from the cards, we will be contacting the Rolco Games Inc. for the game figures needed. For each set, there will be 30 figures in order to represent the number of points or people players will be acquiring during the game. In total, we will need 450,000 figures for our 15,000 sets; however, we will be ordering 500,000 figures for $16,205.00 since the company only sells by pre-set quantities (Rolco Games Inc., 2012).

Moreover, we will be ordering 15,000 double-sided, 8.5” x 11” rules and instructions manuals that will be printed in four colors from the company EPrintFast. The total amount will be $10,72.38, including setup and printing job (EPrintFast, 2012). Lastly, for our custom cardboard box, we will be contacting the Box Co-op, which is a company that manufactures custom boxes, for 20,000 tuck end boxes that will be 12” length, 6” width, and 2.5” height. In the case of wanting customizes boxes, like ours, a quote will be needed from the company. Therefore, after attaining a quote through email, the price for the boxes will come to $3,122.62 (The Box Co-op, 2012). Once we add the prices for each of the elements for our prototype and mass production, our project’s grand total comes to $48,156.00.

References

Chicago Playing Card Co. (n.d.). Prices. Retrieved from http://www.saltz.com/chicago/PRICES.htm. March 30th, 2012

EPrintFast. (2011). Brochures Printing. Retrieved from http://www.eprintfast.com/brochures.html. March 30th, 2012

Gane, N & Beer, D. (2008) New Media: The Key Concepts. New York, NY: Berg Publishers

Hall, S. (2008). ‘Encoding/Decoding’. The Routledge Critical and Cultural Theory Reader. (pp. 234-244). US: Routledge

Invisible Children (Creator). (2012, March 05). KONY 2012 [Video]. Retrieved from www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4MnpzG5Sqc

Rolco Games Inc. (n.d.) Product View. Retrieved from http://www.rolcogames.com/product.php?id=9. March 30th, 2012

SFU Document Solutions (n.d.) Brochures, Flyers, & handouts. Retrieved from http://www.sfu.ca/docsol/brochures.html. March 30th, 2012

Sweeney, K. W. (2009). ‘Medium’. The Routledge Companion to Philosophy and Film. (pp. 173-183). US: Routledge

The Box Co-op. (n.d.). Standard. Retrieved from http://www.boxcoop.com/standard_boxes.htm?gclid=CL3BuY2yl68CFYYHRQodoilyyw. March 30th, 2012