Mundo Novo - A Game for the Sake of Coffee
Master's Thesis Project
MA in Integrated Design
Anhalt University of Applied Sciences
"Mundo Novo - A Game for the Sake of Coffee" is the final outcome of my master's thesis research. Following my research and investigation of what are the knowledge gaps among coffee consumers, I designed a coffee-themed board game with the main goal to raise awareness among coffee drinkers by transmitting to them the history and importance behind the cup of coffee. The game aimed to transmit the theoretical knowledge in coffee in an enjoyable way by using gamification and engaged learning as a core.
Mundo Novo is one of the most famous coffee varieties in the world, grown in Brazil, and means, in Portuguese, “new world”. The game carries this name as a tribute to Brazil, the biggest coffee producer in the world, and also as an invitation to people explore a new world of experience in coffee.
The brand itself has irregular letters created using a variable font to illustrate the irregularities that coffee displays and represent the amazingly complex features that it carries.
The game consists of a coffee-thematic Ludo, a classical square board game for two to four players, in which the players race their coffee beans (tokens) along the board according to the rolls of a dice. Some marks in the squares/spots represent the action "pick up a card", where the players need to take a card according to the color. The cards are divided into two: "question cards" which allow you to make a question to your opponent, or an "action cards" which affect you and your opponent’s coffee beans. The player that gets one of the coffee beans to the finish, the final cup of coffee, wins the game.
The product itself is organized and divided into three containers: (1) the cards, (2) the rules, and (3) the brewing tips. The first container contains forty-eight playing cards. The second container has the rules, two dice, and four tokens in four different colors–green, red, yellow, and blue–in the format of coffee beans. Finally, the third container is not part of the game, and it contains forty cards with brewing tips that will help the players to improve their coffee brewing experience.
Besides the game, the brewing tips cards provide a more playful and fun learning experience regarding coffee brewing. The format in cards makes the content more objective, accessible, and easier to handle and keep with its compact design. The cards teach how to make coffee properly by introducing the fundamentals of coffee, how to control the main variables during the brewing process, and what are the main brewing methods.
Regarding the learning experience, although the tested game's prototype is not the final version, the testers commented that the game experience has an analog interaction, positive and fun. For them, talking about sustainability and social issues are hot topics and can be polemic or boring. And they shared that the game fosters conversation about coffee in a welcoming and inviting way. They also expressed the game was engaging enough, awakened curiosity in the right measure, and did not foster strong competition among players. And the most significant feedback was that after the game, they feel they understand more about coffee and are inspired to improve how they consume coffee.
In conclusion, the game does not intend to turn people into coffee professionals, it has the power to transform them into better coffee consumers. Also, the outcome fulfills its role as a product and can improve people’s coffee consumption by raising awareness by focusing on the story behind the cup of coffee. Understanding how challenging and demanding coffee production is can allow coffee consumers to empathize with the people that are part of the coffee-producing chain. Consequently, they will be part of the specialty coffee movement and contribute to a more sustainable world.
Additional credits to the supervisors Prof. Sandra Giegler and Uwe Gellert from Hochschule Anhalt.