monami_mockup_intro

UI / UX 

monami

monami

Monami is a self-care app where the user takes care of a virtual pet that actively reminds them to take care of themself as well. It is designed to keep the user engaged enough to keep using the app so that they can better manage their time and feel motivated to live better and happier. As the user levels up, older pets grow up and move out, and new pets in need of a home are unlocked, so that the user can continue using it to have more order in their own lives.

ROLE

Research
Conception
Branding
Illustration
Prototyping

Research, Conception, Branding, Illustration, Prototyping

Research, Conception Branding, Illustration, Prototyping

TOOLS

Illustrator
Figma
Photoshop
Sketch

Illustrator, Figma, Photoshop, Sketch

Illustrator, Figma, Photoshop, Sketch

TIMEFRAME

12 weeks
Jan - April 2019

12 weeks, Jan - April 2019

12 weeks, Jan - April 2019

PROBLEM

self care apps are hard to stick to

Within the past 3 years there's been a huge trend in using “self care” apps. They’re designed to help users with mental health problems or anyone with a stressful life to get into a more ordered and healthier lifestyle. These apps remind users to take meals, medication, drink more water, tidy up, and overall helps people try to understand their daily needs as a human to survive. Some will also help improve the user’s mood by encouraging them to be more positive and help motivate them to live better. People have mentioned how much these apps have helped them become more positive and feel better about themselves. However, as great as self care apps can be, not everyone can stick with them. It is difficult for many users to get fully engaged with it, and after a few uses, they get deleted. 

SOLUTION

gamified self care

I decided to design a gamified self care app, called monami. It will act primarily as a virtual pet app, but will also double as a self care app. The user, run’s a foster house for animals, and they’re presented with a set of 4 animals to choose from to take care of during the beginning. Once a pet has been fostered, the player will level up and more animals will be introduced to them to choose from. There will be a maximum limit of 2 pets at a time, so that they don’t overwhelm themselves with too many pets. Every time the user logs in they will be given funds to be used for the pets expenses, such as buying food, clothes, their favourite home decor or toys to play with.

As the user takes care of their pet, they will be encouraged to take care of themselves. All the animals are positive, happy and will often try to crack jokes so that the user can have a worthwhile experience. The intentions for the app is to make the user reflect on how important it really is to take care of someone, and how they are also deserve that same type of love and attention. It’s not easy to start paying attention to one’s well being, but with small steps and with the friendly environment set up by the game, I hope monami will help shift the user’s perspective on their life a little bit.

monami_3
Print
Print

RESEARCH

exploring ideas

exploring ideas

I really wanted push the idea of how we should be investing our time and energy in taking care of ourselves, like we would do for a loved one, such as a pet, a friend or a child. I considered the potential pets that could be featured and the type of self care activities I should include. After highlighting the core aspects of what I wanted with the app, I moved on to researching on potential users, and also looked at other apps in the self care market and virtual pet realm.

To break it down, after the ideation process:
• Researched on people with mild to moderate depression who have exprience with using self care apps.
• Analyzed pre existing self care apps and games with a virtual pet concept.
• Created personas and user scenarios based on findings.
• Used design thinking principles to keep iterating monami and its core functions.

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RESEARCH

user flow and scenarios

user flow and scenarios

The personas feature a younger target market, since this app would be beneficial and eyecatching to them the most. Older users are always welcome to use it however they might feel disinterested in the virtual pet concept. Over here we look at a university student and 5th grader, and see how they might benefit from using monami. The flow chart looks at all the possible functions within the app, and what way the user will be prompted to engage in basic self care tasks.

The personas feature a younger target market, since this app would be beneficial and eyecatching to them the most. Older users are always welcome to use it however they might feel disinterested in the virtual pet concept. Over here we look at a university student and 5th grader, and see how they might benefit from using monami. The flow chart looks at all the possible functions within the app, and what way the user will be prompted to engage in basic self care tasks. 

GRAPHIC ASSETS

brand guidlines and illustrations

I went for a cartoony look with the bold black strokes, instead of a flat one, so that the characters would pop against the background. The main colour palette of the user interface features subtle tones that are easy on the eye and the icons clearly communicate their purpose with the user. The characters all have their own unique features that help them stand out. Overall the game has a cute and warm atmosphere to it, that should make the user feel at home while using it. 

THE APP

final prototype 

The prototype feature's the onboarding process, the core functions and also some additional scenes the user might get while playing monami. Everyday the user will have to take a few minutes to interact with their pets to log their self care activities, whether it's eating with the pet, studying with them or doing any other kind of activities the user has set up. The prototype's low-fidelity wireframes and also rough sketches of the characters can be viewed inside the gallery above. In total there are 130 screens, so loading the Figma file may take some time.

view prototype here and view screens here.

cute and friendly onboarding

Say hello to your very first monami pet, as they take you through the onboarding process. You only get to choose one at the start, but don't worry all the pets will be available later. Once you're done picking a pet, they'll help you set up your daily schedule, so that you can both care for each other at the same time.

inventory, shopping, and friend 

inventory, shopping, and friends

Check you inventory to see what's in stock, to place decor to make your home look cozy, to lay out toys for the pets, and to change your pet's outfit! If you need to buy anything, just check what's available at the shop. You can also take a look at your friend log to see how many pet's you've befriended.

study, workout, eat and talk

Your pet will notify you to study, eat and workout at the times youve set up for those tasks. When your pet asks to workout with you, they will often know that you've already worked out if you have the Health app synced with monami. When there aren't any activities to do, you can simply talk to your pet. They'll usually make a joke, ask you questions, or give pep talks.

shower, brush and sleep

shower, brush and sleep

Help your pet get cleaned up before you go shower, and brush your teeth together before going to bed and after waking up. Your pet will go to bed 15 minutes before your own bedtime. There's an optional bedtime story option where you can read a small story, but that depends on the type of pet you choose, because some just want to go to bed immediately. Be sure to not stay up late and disturb your pet when it's time to sleep.

grow with them or ghost them

If you keep taking care of your pet, you will keep leveling up and your pet will grow up eventually. Once your pet has grown up, they will venture into the wild to experience the world out there, and you'll get to foster a new pet. If you don't take care of them, they will turn into a ghost. If you're lucky enough to catch the pet's ghost lurking around your home and talk to them 5 times in their ghost form, the pet will warm up to you and come back to life. After this you'll get 1 last chance to care for them.

REFLECTION

to wrap it all up

Monami started off as another school project, but it soon turned into a passion project for me. I combined my two loves, illustration and design, together to bring a warm and wholesome experience to life. I feel as though, while doing this project I learned a lot about myself as a designer. There is still so much I want to do with monami, such as expanding on all the pet's personalities or making merchandise of them, so I hope to continue elaborating on it in my spare time. Lastly, thank you to all my peers and friends for showing love and support for monami; I really appreciate it.