By Svenja Schmitt

On December 3rd 2015 first and third grade students of Japanese Studies at Leipzig University tested the prototype of „Folktale Mysteries: Kintaro“. The test results were evaluated by our student Svenja Schmitt, who currently writes her BA thesis on games for learning Japanese.

27 students (14 male and 13 female) took part in the test and played the beta version for about 30 minutes. Despite some bugs and the early development phase of the game, we received insightful feedback about the playing experience.

The majority of our testers stated that they had played educational games before but regarded their entertainment value as average. Only three students indicated that they are not likely to use this type of game to help learn and improve their Japanese language and culture knowledge.

According to the testers, the prototype’s most positive aspects are learning the language, the audio dialogues and their bilingual subtitles, the interaction with the game world characters, and the free exploratione of the world of „Folktale Mysteries: Kintaro“.

66.67% of the students claimed to have gained new knowledge about the Japanese language during the test. Smaller effects were indicated regarding Japanese culture. Interestingly, the majority of students indicated their interest in learning about Japanese culture via videogames. Last but not least, 77.8 % of the participants declared that they would like to play this kind of game again.

The overall positive response and the strong interest in the game encourage us to seek ways in which we can contribute to developing and adapting the game to our curriculum more actively.

We would like to thank all students who participated in the test for their help and feedback.