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Project: AI-FIT 
Supervisors: Prof.Dr. Rainer Malaka , Dr.-Ing Robert Porzel
Role: Designer
Date: 2021-2022


AI-Fit: Influence of narrative interactivity on motivation and user experience in an exergame.

An exergame is a game that requires players to be physically engaging themselves to play the game. In this project, we analyze the effects of an interactive narrative on the user’s motivation and game experience in an exergame. To do this we developed an exergame with an interactive narrative of eight story choices within the game. Participants took part in the study, where they played the game and subsequently answered four questionnaires, and gave an interview describing their experience with the game. From an analysis of this information and based on the interviews we found that the narrative interactivity had a positive effect with the players finding themselves more immersed in the exergame however based on the overall findings we found that there were no significant effects in terms of motivation or experience. The study demonstrated that, according to the results obtained from the participant's data, an interactive narrative does not seem to have a significant influence on player motivation and overall game experience.


Story: The game consists of 30 minutes of gameplay set in a medieval fantasy world. The narrative is mostly static, which is not known by the player, with the exception that some places can be visited in a different order. This, however, will not change the main narrative. The game also features eight choices, where the player can choose between two options by performing one of two exercises, although not all the choices can be made during one play-through. While not apparent to the user when encountering them, most of these choices do not alter the sequence of places visited. Therefore, they have no significant influence on the narrative. However, two of the choices in the game influence which location the player visits next.

Gameplay: The gameplay exclusively consists of exercises the player has to perform in front of a camera. The choices are made by deciding be- tween two exercises, each representing one option. Each gameplay segment that isn’t a choice asks the player to perform one specific exercise to move on a predetermined path.When the player is moving on the path, the exercise recognition is used to accelerate the camera on its way to the end of the segment. In cases where no movement on a path is required, the player usually gets tasked to perform a specific exercise for a fixed amount of repetitions.

Exercises: To be able to have a variety of the best exercises for an exergame based on camera tracking, we compiled a list of possible exercises that we refined further during development.The base of our exercises are different cardio exercises with medium to fast movements that target different muscle groups and can be done while standing. We tried to select exercises which do not require a high level of physical fitness. We also aimed for balanced exercises, all requiring a similar level of fitness.

As a member of the design group in the project, various design tasks related to the exergame and its presentation were undertaken. Specifically, the responsibility of creating visually appealing and immersive 3D models for assets within the game was assigned. The cover of the game was also designed to capture the essence of the interactive narrative and attract potential users. Throughout the project, design-related responsibilities were fulfilled to ensure a cohesive and engaging experience for the users and stakeholders involved.

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