|ADabisc / Trimoo (fulltime)
|Narrative Design; Game Writing; Game Design; Management
|March 2017 – April 2018
|Physical theme park in Doha, Qatar (status unknown)
I was employed by ADabisc/Trimoo as storyteller/writer for their edutainment theme park Juniverse. I acted as product owner of the Game Design and Story/Content domains. Over time, I adopted the role of Story Director.
While I am not allowed to share a lot about the content of the theme park, I can list here what my tasks and responsibilities are.
I was leading three small teams outside of ADabisc, although these teams’ tasks and targets overlap to some degree:
- two content writers (Niels ‘t Hooft / Player-2)
- two rapid prototypers/game designers (BlauwPrint)
- three serious game designers (Sfinx Games)
Additionally, I partnered up with a student team of the CMD Bachelor programme of the NHL Stenden University of Applied sciences from September 2017 until January 2018.
Juniverse was part of the Family Entertainment Complex, located in the Doha Festival City mall in Qatar. It’s current status is unknown to me.
Tasks and Responsibilities
- design and improve main and side characters
- design a quest system and develop content for that system
- create story context for attractions and edit what others have produced
- direct game designers during their development of attraction gameplay (mini-games based on futuristic professions or techniques)
- add content to the project’s storyworld as well as enrich existing content
- design and implement overarching game mechanics that facilitate competency development
- oversee and participate in rapid prototyping game mechanics for attractions;
- explore and design transmedia storytelling solutions to build and reinforce the storyworld
- plan and execute test sessions, and analyse test results
- monitor and edit all physical and digital expressions of the story, spread across the various project departments (graphic design, architecture, voice acting, etc.)
- manage my part of the project as product owner (set and keep deadlines, compose progress reports, set quality standards)
- Balancing the needs of the team in Doha and the needs of the team in Groningen and maintain steady communication
- Taking into account the physicality of a theme park, such as the materials and space required for one attraction
- Taking high concept ideas from the creative director and translating those into substantiated designs for gameplay and narrative
- Including the many different cultures of the international teams at ADabisc and preventing conflicts that might arise to a clash in customs or communication styles
- Building a meta-game that connects and enhances ~30 attraction games to establish a dynamic player profile that shows individual growth and development of school children
Learnings and Takeaways
- How to manage three small design teams
- How to worldbuild in a physical space
- How to design for and test with children aged 8-12
- How to deal with a conflux of diverse cultures
- How to work remote and almost fully independent and self-managed
All images displayed here are from the ADabisc or Trimoo websites and belong to them.