Sabado, Abril 13, 2013

Numa Numa: The Pangasinan Word Game

          The idea for this game was conceived during the submission of thesis proposals. Initially, we thought of developing an arcade-like game. That means violence would be involved since it would include fighting scenes. Unfortunately, sir VAA did not approve of it (he doesn’t encourage violence) so we had to get rid of Rock Domination and think of other mobile game instead.  

           It so happened during this time that I was fond of playing Reader’s Digest Super Word Power. I’ve played Text Twist before but RDSWP is a lot better because it included definitions to the anagrams. Hence, I find it more educational. As team leader, I suggested that my groupmates and I create a word game like Text Twist and RDSWP but add a twist by using Pangasinense language instead. My comrades concurred with my suggestion and the planning phase ensued.  During this phase I drew a lot of sketches on how the game would look like. I wanted to visualize it before commencing on programming codes. Even now, this is how I approach my projects.

           While I was busy with planning I was also learning the CORONA SDK platform. It’s a cross-platform mobile development tool that uses the Lua programming language. Coming from a background of C++ development, I found Lua user friendly and easy to learn. You just have to devote sometime. Learning through examples sped up my learning as I was able to see how the commands and functions worked. During this time I met a programmer online named Peach Pellen. Her site helped a lot for someone learning the ropes of CORONA. I got to chat with her in facebook too. Too bad she had to leave CORONA in the months to follow.

           Numa Numa came from the phrase “Nunut Mu Ah” or in English, “Think about it”. We took the initial letters and combined them to form the name of our mobile word game.  Our game had two primary goals:

1.       To preserve the Pangasinan language. With the prevalence of the western influence sinking deep in our generation and the effects of digital technology the younger generation might someday abandon their identity as Pangasinense speaking people. This game helps increase their Pangasinense vocabulary.

2.       To promote Pangasinan. According to the reports that I’ve read from Rappler, 1 out of 4 Filipinos now have a smartphone. If we can port this game to smartphones, it can ride the wave of digital technology sweeping across our country. This mobile game also includes beautiful sceneries from Pangasinan that visitors can expect to see when they visit the province.

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