Three 17-year-old buddies. They are in standard XII this year. When they were in standard X, the three of them were obsessed with one more thing besides study: Building a game!
While playing a game together, they once noticed that one of their friends who is visually challenged couldn’t play some games or had difficulty playing them.
And from there, their passion for games found a new direction. The three of them decided to build a game that even the visually challenged children and individuals could play easily, which would be easy to use and be pocket-friendly as well.
This is the story of Yashovardhan Kothari, Dev Kapashi and Dhruv Jhaveri.
Dhruv’s brother Moksha is visually challenged. They found that he was finding it difficult to play with them. Therefore, they came up with the idea of making a game that he could play and enjoy. Upon further investigation, they came to know that such games are not available for visually challenged children in India. They are of foreign brands and they are not very easy to use. They are complex. Moksha had some games like that. But what if they built a game for those who do not have a game, they thought and thus the seed of this great invention was sown. This question set them off on a new journey.
Yashovardhan says, “We decided to build a game that could be easily played by the visually challenged, be portable, user-friendly and reasonably priced. The main thing is that it will be interesting. It will increase the interaction of the society with them, they will also be able to play with everyone and not feel isolated. Then we played a lot of games. I also looked at their operating system and decided that there should be a game that can be played ‘physically’, sans multiple buttons and complicated mechanism. Then we decided to make an electronic base computer game. Its general structure is like the quiz-base game Kaun Banega Crorepati. It is interactive. We created this general knowledge based game using Python, a programming language.”
Dev Kapashi says, “we had decided to work on three things. One is size, the other is price and the third is simplicity! We decided to create a very interesting game without too many buttons, too many notifications.”
These teenagers then watched many games, held discussions with visually challenged children, went to their schools and understood what problems they face while playing games. Then one by one they started designing the game. Work began on building a table-size electronically-run game. For at least a year-and-a-half, these teenagers were working on this game as if possessed. All this time they remained busy building the game, its database, coding it and running trials and re-trials to make it sound and fail-safe. And after this grueling hard work and dedication, their game took shape. They named it ‘Vision Beyond’.
Asked how they managed this while doing their regular study?
Yashovardhan says, “it is one thing to come up with an idea, but translating that idea into reality is not an easy task. The three of us were obsessed with the idea of building this game. It was an obsession. We wanted to make a product of our imagination. That task was not easy. Sketching, learning coding language, creating 3D modules, importing voice, constant trial and error were all challenging. Often the idea seems simple, but actually realising it is a very interesting and challenging journey. It was so for us too.”
Dev says, “During this time we brainstormed so much, read a lot, talked to each other about our ideas. We also studied market surveys, what people want, what is available in the market today, what is not, what is needed. I brainstormed on it again and again. And at the same time, we enjoyed the work and understood the challenge anew!”
All three friends are now working hard to make the game available to the visually challenged friends.
Game is ready, What’s next?
These three talented friends designed the game. But what next? Yash, Dev and Dhruv say, “We want this game to reach as many children as possible, we want that they should have fun playing it. The game should go into manufacturing or mass production now. It should be available in the market. We are also considering donating this game to the organisations working for the visually challenged. We will also work hard to ensure that this game reached as many visually challenged friends as possible.”
- ‘Vision Beyond’ is a quiz game for visually challenged.
- Four, two or even one person can play this game at a time.
- Every next level becomes competitive and points are scored.
- Not all the visually challenged people know Braille in our country. Therefore, this game has been made interactive so that even those who do not know Braille can play this game.
- For more information on this 3D printed game, please visit: http://visionbeyond.org.in/
- Contact Yashovardhan, Dhruv and Dev on their email IDs: