Food Fables


Brand Identity, Illustration, UI/UX


Food Fables is a mixed digital and physical experience, primarily utilizing a mobile app to help college students on their journey towards building healthy nutritional behaviors. With Food Fables, our team wants to give students an engaging foundation to grow by targeting issues of budget and consistency through a gamified nutrition tracking application. The game will follow users once they get assigned a behavior archetype from our original eating habit quiz, and take them on a journey to complete nutrition quests and rewards. (Partnered with Kathryn Gross, Ramir Johnson, and Jess Stencel, Third Year, 2022)


With the topic of nutrition in mind and are target audience identified, we began the research process by conducting an initial survey to gauge interest and to confirm various problems to solve with our solution. From these results, we were able to confirm our problem statement that a large majority of surveyed college students cited worry about their eating habits. From this pool, the issue that we found most consistent among students was having a consistent diet. The reason: Students are simply too busy with school and burnt out with little motivation to eat properly. 

The research continued with interviews from experts in the field to gain better insight into the problems found in the survey, and how to address them in an effective, and scientifically backed method. We were lucky enough to collaborate with two faculty in the department of Nutritional Sciences at Penn State, Dr. Travis Masterson and Professor Stephen Kodish. From these interviews, we discovered incredibly important facts about behavioral psychology that would majorly impact our app development moving forward. This includes an emphasis on visually tracking progress, and establishing a dynamic goal and reward system that starts small, and moves into more difficult habit changes as the user grows their foundation.


The goal when beginning to develop the mobile app was to create a convenient and engaging platform that encourages users to start and maintain healthier eating habits. The key aspects of the game includes the Archetype Assignment Quiz, which marks the beginning of the user journey, followed by practical tracking systems such as a Budget/Meal Log, and the primary function, the Food Fables Goal Map. During the entirety of the process, from initial wireframes all the way through usability testing, we made sure to frame our development around the concepts found during the period of research and data collection. Once such objective was maintaining a consistent narrative voice and illustrative style throughout the journey storyline to keep users engaged and moving towards their healthy behavior goals.


Along with the digital application experience, for Food Fables, we also wanted to create a physical experience that could be placed in locations that would directly involve our college student audience, such as libraries and campus hub buildings. This scaled back version of the mobile app would offer a condensed model of the game system to offer initial engagement with the brand, and encourage potential users to become invested in their journey and download game as well. We would have stations with paper versions of the eating behavior quiz as well as take-away merchandise items like character trading cards, stickers, and also poster installation. The in-person quiz would fulfill the same function of helping students identify their specific problems related to nutrition, and give them the starting point of their journey with the Fable Folk archetypes that determines the necessary goals they may want to address. ★ @jguinndesign ★ ★ @jguinndesign ★ ★ @jguinndesign ★ ★ @jguinndesign ★ ★ @jguinndesign ★ ★ @jguinndesign ★