Downsizing challenge is a role-playing puzzel game that introduces minimalist lifestyle

Leon Liu



Minimalism might not work for everyone, Yet the concept still sounds vague for anyone who wishes to try this lifestyle. What is a minimalist lifestyle? Why minimalism? Why is it a popular life choice for more and more people today? I propose a solution in the form of an iOS game. The user will play a fictional character named Jessie, whose goal is to declutter unwanted items and find essential ones. The game will present the characteristics of the minimalist lifestyle, show its values and benefits, and, most importantly, be entertaining. The paper conceptualizes the game and works like a rough blueprint. I identify research findings and empirically validated theories, such as four common characteristics of minimalists (clutter removal, cautious shopping, valuing longevity, and self-sufficiency) and the lifestyle’s contribution to emotional well-being and sustainability. I also use game theories, including the BrainHex Model of seven gamer types and ten popular persuasive strategies to design the game. For example, while analyzing the gamer type, I propose a combination of achiever and seeker types because it comprehensively describes minimalists’ intrinsically motivated characteristics. Based on that, I implemented the two persuasive game strategies in the game: self-monitoring & Suggestion and customization & personalization. In the final evaluation, the two paper prototypes (interface prototype and procedure prototype) effectively introduce the lifestyle, but some user testers respond that the procedure prototype is not as entertaining as a game. As a result, I think it is necessary to reframe the project and revise the prototypes furtherly.

Capstone (UG)