Inspired by the idea of bringing families closer together, an RMIT Vietnam student has redesigned the popular Hasbro© game Monopoly, as part of her end-of-course project, to celebrate the upcoming Vietnamese Lunar New Year, also known as Tết Nguyên Đán.
The Bachelor of Design (Digital Media) graduate Nguyen Ngoc Thanh Tam said the idea for the game evolved from her original concept of creating a children’s book to honour Vietnamese culture, and after 13 weeks of conceptualizing, structuring, designing, Tết Ta Mua was produced.
“My initial thought was to make a meaningful project related to Vietnamese culture, then I thought of a book for children on Tet holiday but finally I realised a game could be something that can gather all family members,” said Tam.
After some research, Tam not only learnt how to design a game that the whole family could enjoy, she also studied the history of Tet culture to ensure the game was meaningful and authentic for all players. She then applied her learned knowledge from brand design identity, graphic design and colour layout to create the game.
“In my view, the current Vietnamese Lunar New Year no longer has the same cultural values as before. Therefore, I hope that both adults and young children can gain the cultural values of Vietnam through the game and children will learn from older people,” she said.
RMIT School of Communication & Design Lecturer and Tam’s project mentor Mr Nguyen Hung Giang said the project was creative, beautifully made and had many culturally vibrant messages.
Designed with delicate watercolour drawings, the game makes players feel excited when learning about lists of things, food, wishes and works given in the lead up to, and during the Tet holiday period in Vietnam, such as buying Banh Chung and Banh Tet (traditional Vietnamese cake), receiving lucky money and enjoying family reunions.
The game brings players closer together, by celebrating and valuing the beauty of Vietnamese traditional culture, while teaching children more about Tet.
Designed in both Vietnamese and English, Tết Ta Mua is also aimed at expats who are living in Vietnam, and Vietnamese families residing abroad.
The RMIT graduate now plans to expand the game and hopes families will adopt it as "spiritual food" during Tet.
Story: Thuy Le