Career Quest is a choice-based game that gives the players opportunities to explore different career paths. In the game, the player has the autonomy to steer the career path of the characters they play by making informed choices; all along navigating real-life situations that will impact their career journey.
The Career Quest Game is an extension of the Stem for Girls program of Quest Alliance in partnership with IBM and is designed to empower girls and boys in government secondary schools, break gender stereotypes, make informed career choices and apply 21st-century skills to create solutions to issues they observe in their communities.
Objective of Collaboration
Career Quest is an immersive and experiential career exploration journey for adolescents with an objective to provide exposure to different career journeys and in the process bring their attention to how gender and stereotypes affect choices and how to navigate them.
To provide opportunities for the players to identify, understand, learn and as far as possible practice skills such as reflection, research, experimentation, negotiation and so on needed to make informed career choices.
To bring out the dilemmas and influences in the career decision making process and allow the student to play out different permutations and combinations in a career exploration process.
The game is an opportunity for the players to explore different career paths. To aid the exploration, some of the features of the game are:
Multiple characters from different parts of the country
The game has different characters from different parts of the country and their stories are simulations of real-life situations. The player is presented with choices that lead them to a specific career journey.
Immersive narrative-based experience
The player is exposed to different careers and career tools like reflection, research, experimentation, and more through the character’s exploration journey. The player collects experience cards whenever their character learns something new. These cards provide information about the tool and the skill. These are blended into stories that serve as an engaging learning experience for the players.
Career points are metrics that help the player understand the impact of their decisions in terms of money, satisfaction, and social acceptance. These career points are presented to the player during decision-making.
This game allows players to explore multiple journeys that lead to different endings based on the choices they make. The player has the option to explore the other journeys by going back to decision points. The map helps the players to view their career paths at all times.
Aspects of Learning
Exposure & Exploration
Exploring a number of different career development tools like mentoring, internship, networking, research, and many more was a critical foundation.
Through this exposure, the intention of the game is to enable players to use this knowledge at appropriate times while navigating their own career journeys.
Each decision the player makes sets the character on a career exploration journey. The game is designed such that there are no right or wrong decisions and it allows the player to explore a particular path in depth.
Diversity & Inclusivity
Currently there are 8 characters in the story and these characters are representative of the diversity of India. It allows players to situate themselves in different lives, and find spaces of resonance and empathy for the various characters, across different socio-economic backgrounds, genders, caste and age-groups.
Process of Implementation
The approach for the game was based on our insights from the research we conducted for the STEM for girls project. It helped us understand the audience, and their preferences with respect to gamified experiences.
The research set the foundation for storylines for different characters. The illustrations were developed to aid the storytelling experience of the game. The music was later integrated to add enhance the overall experience of playing the game.
The development of the game was done internally.
The music was designed by Disoriented Penguin.
To ensure the game works for the target audience in the given context, it is essential to get quick feedback from learners and other stakeholders.
There were 2 rounds of research to test the game in phases with sample groups to take the feedback and iterate on the game design.