350°: Gamified

We used Unity and Visual Studio to add a gamified questionnaire to the original version of the 350 app.

During the time of COVID-19, it has become increasingly difficult to stay connected and interact with new people. As a way to help diffuse this issue, 350° was created to actively engage users with the physical component of cooking as well as the virtual component of meeting new people. As a dating application, 350° allows users to swipe and match to begin a text conversation, as would Tinder, Bumble, or Hinge. However, 350° differs where it provides a platform for users to take the next step. Through 350°, matched users can set up a virtual date by agreeing upon a 350° recipe and then cook together through a video conversation.

Interview and research conducted by the original challenge #4 350 team.

Walkthrough of the updated app prototype. First prototype was initially designed by the original challenge #4 350 team.

In this version of 350°, the team has worked to bring the application to life. By working on the Unity track, the team has learned some of the fundamentals of game programming and has applied those elements to bring the recipe matching feature of 350° to life. Applying the game aspect to this dating app, the core game design is that users take a gamified questionnaire that  identifies their current cooking moods and preferences. Then (which we did not include in our actual game design), the app will recommend matches based on people who have similar results (cooking preferences). The game mechanism uses the design of Text101 in order to provide a series of questions that asks users to pick between 2 options in order to identify their their cooking and meal preferences and moods, with each response leading to another question. Then, 350 recommends matches based on the user’s responses and the user can swipe to match, text to connect, and select recipes to join a video call with their match. Once the user matches, chooses a recipe, and cooks via video chat, they can then restart the gamified questionnaire and cycle through the options again to find more matches. Furthering the design of 350°, this game uses approachable language and food puns to promote a fun, low pressure, and enjoyable experience. Additionally, the design of the app draws on color choices of red, white, black, and blue (using color theory to make users hungry that promote connections and virtual dating), which is sleek yet playful and encourages a satisfying experience.

Link to the published game: https://sharemygame.com/@mfreeman/let-s-cook

This iteration of 350° boasts a gamified questionnaire that has been published in its basic functionality using Unity and functions in a web browser by pressing either “1” or “2” for the corresponding choice. While the game aesthetics match that of the 350 app in color, font, and overall design, the game is meant to demonstrate the cooking questionnaire component of the app and has not yet been fully integrated into the app’s interface. Thus, we chose to exemplify the complete aesthetics of the user’s questionnaire experience using Figma while the published game exemplifies the coded selecting process. Our team was all new to coding, so we chose to keep things simple while still coding and publishing the basic functions of the cooking preference questionnaire. This game expands on the development of 350° by  promoting users’ enjoyment of interacting with the application itself as well as by increasing the likelihood of forming real and lasting connections by providing accurate match options.

The game aesthetic matches that of the app prototype in Figma.
The code used to create our game. We’re beginners, so we’re pretty proud!
The draft of our core game loop.
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