Game Project


In Voyage Beijing, you play the role of a first-time business traveler to China.

Voyage Beijing


With more companies establishing business in China, an increasing number of American business people are visiting China; among them many are visiting for the first time. Although China is known as having a profound ancient culture, the country is also becoming modernized and internationalized quickly with the rapid social and economic development. The modern culture intermingles with the ancient culture, bringing many changes that may result in complicated cultural situations. This can be intimidating to visitors from other countries and cultures who are trying to understand and adapt.

For business people, knowledge about a culture can make a difference in their business prospects. Therefore, some guidance is necessary to familiarize the American business people with Chinese culture before their first trip to China. Current resources for information about China include the Internet, books and magazines, videotapes, and seminars, training lessons and workshops. In these learning formats the users are often assuming a rather passive role in their learning. Although the users could gain a great deal of knowledge from these resources, the process can be slow, confusing and even boring.

Voyage Beijing utilizes the advantages of digital games, such as engagement, motivation and interactivity to teach players crucial information about business travel to China. Voyage Beijing is a proof-of-concept serious game that simulates a first business trip to Beijing, China. As a player, your mission is to travel to Beijing and arrange a business deal with a potential Chinese partner. The primary way to achieve success is to build a good impression with your Chinese hosts. You build or loose impression points by making choices in the interactions you have with the Chinese hosts. On your journey you can also earn knowledge points by exploring the game world, which is based on Beijing.


Peer Reviewed Awards:

  • Outstanding Media Project in Interactive Media, DMAT Showcase 2005.

Peer Reviewed Exhibitions:

  • Winn, B., Chen, H. Voyage Beijing: Using a Digital Game as an Enjoyable and Effective Training Format in Preparing for Business Travel. Exhibited at 2005 Indiana IDEAs Festival, Bloomington, IN. April 23, 2005.
  • Chen, H., Winn, B. Voyage Beijing. Exhibited at the 2005 DMAT Showcase, East Lansing, MI. May 5, 2005.
  • Chen, Heidi, Winn, Brian. Voyage Beijing. Exhibited at Future Play 2005 International Conference on the Future of Game Design and Technology in East Lansing, MI, October, 14, 2005.


This project began as Heidi Chen’s master’s production thesis in Digital Media Art & Technology in the Department of Telecommunication, Information Studies, and Media at Michigan State University. I guided the thesis, serving as thesis chair. Both Heidi and I were heavily involved in the design and actual development of the playable version of Voyage Beijing used in the research portion of the thesis. Since the completion of the thesis, we have continued to develop the game.


The Voyage Beijing proof-of-concept serious game is available online. NOTE: Shockwave plugin and broadband access required.