Survive The Day Dev Vlog 2: Menus

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Lou Bagel

May 20, 2024

Survive The Day Dev Vlog 2

Language Learning Mode

Though my primary focus has been finishing menus, some of that involved getting the underlying features working as well. The feature I'm most excited about is the language learning mode.

I will never try to claim that using this language learning mode in my games will make you fluent in a language. The goal of this feature is simply to have another way of practicing a language, a fun way hopefully, as it makes sense to me that being exposed to a variety of different methods would be beneficial.

In the video I talk about people that have learned English by watching American television. With the amount of time some people spend watching TV, that kind of makes sense, and I figure people can also spend a lot of time playing video games.

I've been using DuoLingo pretty regularly. I'm on a 482 day streak! For those that don't know, you can earn streak freezes, so I haven't actually done it every day. But anyway, I've heard some people say that DuoLingo isn't the best method and that it just makes you feel good because it is gamification of language learning.

After thinking about it for a bit, I realized that it wouldn't even bother me if it was true. As in, even if DuoLingo is a horrible way to learn a new language compared to other tools or methods, I don't care.


Because the gamification aspects of it are bringing me back and making it an overall enjoyable experience. If I was on a deadline, actually living in another country, or learning it for a job - that would be a different story - I would be trying to figure out the best and fastest way to learn. But for me, I can say I am learning something, and I am enjoying it.

So if the line is so blurred - as in, is DuoLingo a gamified language learning tool OR a game where you learn a little bit of a language - why not approach it from the flip side and end up at the same result:

Instead of a language learning tool that you gamify so much that it is enjoyable - take a game and add a language learning feature so it is enjoyable and you learn a little bit.

The TL;DR I guess would just be that I'm not sure how much my language learning feature will help but that aspect doesn't bother me greatly as I think it will help some and you can have fun while doing it!

Of course, I am open to feedback on how to make it better! I just mean doesn't bother me as in I don't think I will remove the feature even if people say it is a horrible way to learn a language. Those people don't have to enable it!

How it works

To get it setup you just need to go into the settings menu and do the following:

in game menu to enable language learning mode
Enabling language learning mode

With the language learning mode turned on all dialogue will be shown in the language you want to learn. Then there is a button that you can hold to show the text in your native language.

The ideal level I'd think this would work best at is when you know most of the words in the sentence, and basic sentence structure, so that you can hold the translate button so you can figure out that one word you don't know.

Of course, even if you are pretty confident you know what they are saying you can still hold the button to double check. And then you can also use it if you have no idea, as even if you are lost on the foreign language you can still get it translated fully into your native language. You might not pick up much, but you might start picking up short sentences or words that are repeated a lot.

As I'm typing this, I literally just had a few more ideas that I could consider, if everything goes well of course. It might be interesting to work with a foreign language teacher to write dialogue at different levels - like here is a game to play for someone that is taking a beginner's course, and here is one for level 2, etc. Then it might be cool to track how many times the player used the translate button and show stats at the end. Like you translated the text this many times or this percent of times.

Probably won't get to those anytime soon, but hey, a bagel can dream, can't it???


The above section covered just the language learning mode but this dev vlog was mostly about menus.

When I made this dev vlog, I felt like going into a bit more detail such as explaining certain decisions. Part of that might just be from not having a lot of buddies to discuss game dev with, but I also figured, why not, its my dev vlog might as well share what I want to share.

Next dev vlog I am thinking about making it shorter and more concise. Mostly due to the time it took to create the dev vlog. This time I recorded everything I wanted to say first and then assembled the video to match. I think it turned out well, but I am just not sure people would want to watch a video over twenty minutes that is mostly about menus.

So next time I think I might try to make the video shorter, so it takes less of my time away from game dev, and also use the fact that it is shorter to try and make it more entertaining - as in don't spend too much time on topics that might have people fast forwarding or clicking away - but I can use the blog on the website to go into as much detail as I want.

I realized that I usually type out what I am going to say first anyway. Why not type up a blog first of everything I want to say and then pick the highlights to make a video from.

I'm also considering a dev dev blog (name TBD, ha). I try to keep my dev vlogs player focused, as in just talk about the game and not like a tutorial for other developers on how to create features that I've created. But since the majority of viewers are other developers, I thought I might just take certain parts and write up a little blog just for developers and link to that on the first blog.

Let me know what you think! It's basically my first time getting into all of this so it's all new to me!