Micro Dinos

microdinos logo

 

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Micro Dinos details

Main role: Designer
Secondary roles: Team leader / Art Director

Year: 2014
Platforms: Android, iOS, Windows Phone
Support: Digital / Smartphones and Tablets
Production: 1 year
Company: Science4you S.A.
Publisher: Science4you S.A.

Presentation

Micro Dinos is a dinosaur strategic battle game online for children and adults.
Choose your favorite dino and compete with your friends for the title of best Micro Dino trainer.

International trailer

Story
Professor4you got in his time machine and traveled to a prehistoric era where dinosaurs were still living on Earth. He decided to bring along 5 dinosaur eggs in order to study them in detail when something happened! The eggs shrank on his way back and, when collided, Micro Dinos were born!

Main features
– Compete online, improve your experience and evolve your micro dino with Strength, Defense and Agility.
– Personalize your micro dino and give it a name and an image.
– Unlock the special powers and set out a battle strategy for each of your micro dinos.
– Practice alone or with your friend’s dinos.
– Find out the history behind each dinosaur through the educational E-books.

Technical details
– In order to play online you need to purchase the toys in Science4you stores or any authorized agent.
– There are 5 Micro Dinos to collect.
– Each Micro Dino has a NFC microchip with a unique identifier.
– A user registration and a WI-FI connection are mandatory to play online.
– Micro Dinos is available in Portuguese, English and Spanish.

 

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Development

Micro Dinos originally started as a proposal in 2013 to Nerd Monkeys to produce for Science4you a dinosaur themed videogame that could somehow connect to a toy.  After the original offer was rejected, a different proposal was set on the table where the game would completely be made inside Science4you. This way, that team could continue to support and monitor the game for future updates without the need of an external company to be constantly available.
However, a great deal of expertise and experience was still needed to lead a new team to create the game so Nerd Monkeys (and specifically me) was still on board to assist in the design, technology and team leading inside Science4you.

The biggest challenges were with the programming team and the toy factory in china that had to communicate perfectly so that the NFC chips would be pre-programmed with the correct data before inserting them in the dinosaurs.

When production started in 2013, it was believed that NFC readers in mobile phones and tablets would become the norm since digital transactions were becoming more and more standard. Unfortunatly, it was clear by early 2014 that most mobile phones and tablets were not adapting this technology and Micro Dinos would suffer since most devices would not be able to read the toys.
To circumvent this problem, a bonus card with a QR Code was included in the toy package with the exact same information as in the NFC chip.

Team

Note: this list does not include the testers, translators and other QA services

Production: Miguel Pina Martins
Game design / Art direction: Filipe Duarte Pina
Lead Programmer: Frederico Santos
Programmer: Daniel Policarpo
3D sets and dinossaurs: Pedro Candelária
Design and Interface: Ana Cruz
Story: Daniela Silva
Servers and database center: João Jorge
E-Books: Ana Garcia

Animations: AGM Labs
Music and SFX: Audio Jungle
Website: João Mangana and Hugo Morais
Martketing: Eduardo Brito and Cátia Gil

 

Curiosities

The original idea was to release 6 dinosaurs, but when we got to the boxes design, there was a problem with the Brachiosaurus long neck, it wouldn’t fit the in the standard sized box that we had designed. Or rather, we could build a bigger box just for him, but this would mean having a different sized box just for one of the dinosaurs which would have an impact on costs, shipping and other things. So management decided it was easier to just cut him out of the game. Poor dino.

 

Links

Science4you – http://www.science4you.pt/
Micro Dinos – http://www.microdinos.com/

Get it on
App Store – https://itunes.apple.com/pw/app/micro-dinos/id919089119?mt=8
Google Play – https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=pt.s4y.md&hl=pt_PT

 

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