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JenniferDowding


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Nom Nom Rider

Clients: Microsoft and Fearless Frog Innovations

Microsoft - Nom Nom Rider

My Role

Project Manager / Lead Designer

 Also: Publicity, Writing and Sound Editing 

Description

Race down an energy slide eating nummy food! Avoid fatty foods or you will grow too big! Collect sports and fitness activities to increase your speed. Get bonus points for a balanced diet!

The Project

Nom Nom Rider is not only a fun and engaging game for kids on the new Windows 7 Mobile platform, it is also a mechanism for change. It aims to teach kids about healthy living and a eating a balanced diet. With over 16 percent of American children either overweight or obese it is no wonder that Michelle Obama has created an “obesity task force” and Canadian health ministers have pledged to combat our expanding waistlines over the next ten years. Their mission is not only cosmetic, it is also necessary for our economic health. Everyone agrees that new, innovative approaches are necessary. Nom Nom Rider was created to game to provide an important and timely message.

Play as a cute character named “Nom Nom” who stays in the game by eating healthy food and gains weight by eating junk. The first time you see him blimp out and you hear a big “squish” you realized it’s not just another educational game. Sports Power Ups, including Hockey, Soccer and Football al- low him to go faster and break through junk food. Nom Nom can lose weight and stay healthy by gaining a balanced diet with each of the four food groups. The game is bright, colour- ful and kid friendly. The look was inspired by Canada’s Food Guide and their “rainbow” design. The score screen is based on the familiar Nutrition Facts image. We wanted to keep the game fun and engaging while helping to provide happy as- sociations with good food. To provide a “healthy alternative” game that parents can offer to their kids but that is easy to pick up and addictive for everyone.

Interesting Notes

-One of only two apps from B.C. to successfully release on the launch date of the Windows Phone 7.

-Placed #2 in Family Games over the holiday season. (Dec 23)

-Over 3500 players in 1 month. Developed by 5 people in 1 month.

-Delivers information from Canada’s Food Guide in a fun and engaging way designed for children. 

My Team: Team Yummy Cloud

Environmental Artist: Azhar Boumarah Technical Artist: Mohammed El Eryan
Character Artist: Milim Kim Software Engineer: Anshul Goyal

What I learned

This was my first experience releasing an app into the marketplace. Our situation was a special one since we showed our client from Microsoft, Glenn Berg a prototype for a game and he dared us to try and produce it fast enough to make it for the launch which was a month away. Since our other client did not want it to distract from Banana Samurai (which we were currently working on) we committed to doing it after school and on weekends. It was not easy, there were many long days watching the weekend go by, watching other students leave, but we knew this was too good of an opportunity to pass up. Finally we launched successfully (passing the TRCs!) with a game that we were proud of. We offered the game for free, since we wanted as many kids to get their hands on it as possible.

Finally I learned some things I never expected, like publicity (especially while you're working on another game!) There was quickly interest in our games and we didn't want to lose our chance to get them out there. Thus a one-pager was drafted, I did an interview (see below) for Health Tech Today and we were invited to present at the Health and Science Expo where were then able to test Banana Samurai.

It was a struggle but I think we all benefitted from rapid prototyping and working hard and taking a risk.

Experience Nom Nom Rider

Gameplay Video

Nom Nom Rider from Jennifer Dowding on Vimeo.

Featured on Health Tech Today

My interview with our client Glenn Berg about the projects on MSN's Health Tech Today with Dr. Bill Crounse. Click the image below to watch the interview.

Health Tech Today

Nom Nom Rider Photos

Click for full size
NomNom! Balanced Diet! Menu Sports Power Up! A Little Bigger... Too Much Junk!NomNom!

 

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Website content by Jen Dowding 2010; Design by M Emily M 2010.