A team of three (Aviroop Roy, Bhuvanesh Tekavde, and Dhruv Jalgaonkar) from MA Game Design are working on a VR Experience that focuses on the problem “Climate Change”.
Hence, our goals are aligned and thought of featuring our concepts in each other projects to give added value to their VR experience and a purpose for the product.
The game is set in a world where Earth has been destroyed and humanity has shifted to interstellar living standards. Here, there lies a virtual museum that helps people understand the mistakes that were made by humans leading to the destruction of Earth. You play as a character that has ventured into this VR Museum and is trying to re-learn Earth.
The game deals with serious issues in a metaphorical format by using human emotional traits to paint, the canvas of how Earth is in danger due to our issues. This Virtual Reality experience talks about Environmental issues and how as humans our day-to-day activities might lead to inevitable extinction. The intention of the watch is to help regular humans detect their carbon footprint so that they can decrease it on a personal level which will benefit the world. In the game, the character wears a futuristic version of the watch and it helps us draw comparisons between different scenarios.
According to the VR Experience, the timeline is in the year 2050. The story that has been developed where the band was made in the year 2022 has progressed to create multiple versions. Since the destruction of the earth took place due to climate change caused by the greed of humanity, it has become a necessity for humanity to have the band as a part of their lifestyle for being aware of their surroundings and taking responsibility to avoid the same disaster they caused on Earth.
The band's future is developed to integrate with multiple platforms and the consumer’s surroundings. A technology is developed to scan radioactive waves, toxic gases, and the sustainability level of products sold in supermarkets to record personal footprints.
The design of the band contains a screen that showcases detailed information for the users in the future, due to the disaster it has become common knowledge to understand each and every scientific aspect of the environment.
The VR Experience
The user interface is supposed to be something very simple and easily caught up on by anyone with common knowledge. There is a device known as the Aranet 4 that displays the CO2 level, humidity, temperature, and atmospheric level through numbers. By following the principle of design created by Dieter Rams “Good design is as little design as possible”, the Aranet 4 seems to complicate the user on having much information in the form of numbers. For that users need to know what is the number that is a dangerous amount of CO2, which is perceivable or couldn’t be bothered to educate themselves because many other things revolve around the user’s life.
If the product would be targeting a general audience and acceptable to most knowledge, there needs to be a simpler method and a required amount of information to not confuse the user.
There is one design system noticed that most of the population follows the color variation and the design behind “Red, Yellow and Green”. This system is a universal design since it is applied for traffic lights, emergency indications, alarms, etc. This system is a universal design, and it is acceptable to most of the general masses.
The most significant one is the traffic light because this device was patented in the year 1910 and ever since then it has become a muscular memory today to react to these lights while crossing the road or driving a car. This shows that we as a human has developed and adapted as per the system that is designed where we (mostly) obey the law.
Therefore, by using the concept of the traffic light design, I can indicate the level of CO2. This will allow me to create a parameter to show the danger level of harmful gases through light. Green Light is a normal level, Yellow Light is mild and Red Light is severe.
Elephant Design Studio
A Sustainable wearable that allows you to track your carbon footprint. The product is made from sustainable materials such as Orange Bio-leather, Bioplastic, and Polylactic Acid which benefits the circular economy system in the consumer electronics industry. The sustainable goal here is to bring organic materials to the electronic industry to disrupt the traditional use of materials in mass manufacturing.
This product is featured in a VR Experience made by MA Game Design Students to add more value to the project. Both of our projects focus on climate change as a global issue.
I embarked on a journey to test and experiment with organic leather. To break down the concept of the bio-textile further, the base structure of this material is made from bioplastic (Starch/sodium alginate + glycerin + vegetable gelatin). Hence, I dived in to experiment with understanding the difference in proportions of making multiple types of bioplastics containing different densities and strengths to reach an appropriate point.
There were different samples made from variants of ingredients inputted in the material. The reason why I had to try these samples was to find out what exactly I need for the material property to have to decide the purpose of the product. Some samples had more starch, there were some had more glycerol and there were some had more vegetable gelatin. The ones that had more starch were brighter in color and brittle as a biscuit, this made the material feel heavier and easy to break while handling it. The ones that had less glycerol became hard as a brick and were giving out starch particles each time the material was in contact with something. The ones that had more vegetable gelatin became a semi-liquid form (similar property of a jelly). In conclusion, it gave me the idea to balance the ingredient at a fair point where the surface should be like the one which had more gelatin sheet, the hardness as the one which had more starch to promote a flexible and versatile material. The important factor to keep in mind is the time taken to dry (i.e., 3-5 days). This implies for smaller scale sample. Considering that my final prototype material would be larger for trials and errors, it would take longer.