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Influent – Free Edition

LOS ANGELES, CA – April 18, 2020 — Three Flip Studios announced today via social media that the French, Italian, and Korean editions of critically acclaimed language learning video game, Influent, are now free-to-play. Starting today, a new bundle entitled “Influent Free Edition” will be available for download on Steam and the Humble Store. A grand total of 15 additional language packs are also available for purchase as DLC.

Speaking about the sudden transition to free-to-play, developer Rob Howland said, “With the stay at home advisory and closing of schools across the globe, I thought it’d be cool to give everyone something fun and productive to do while we all wait patiently for the world to reopen.” Howland went on to express his desire to expand on the game stating, “Hopefully [Influent] will become a sleeper hit so I can hire a dream team of artists and linguists to help me grow it into a much larger space. I’ve always wanted to take the player outside somewhere to a public park or train station.” Regarding the current quarantine situation, Howland laughed “At least now players will be able to identify with being confined to just an apartment.”

Influent’s interactive 3D environment consists of a virtual bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, and living room and each language features over 500 words including nouns, adjectives, and verbs, complete with high-quality native audio pronunciations. The more complex languages such as Japanese, Chinese, and Russian also contain multiple alphabet modes, including Romanization, allowing players to toggle between them on the fly.

Influent’s novel approach to vocabulary acquisition has been widely regarded as an effective method by many on their quest to fluency in a new language. The 3D space assists players in anchoring words to physical locations, a practice that people refer to as building a memory palace. “If you’ve ever had trouble recalling words from memory,” says Howland, “Influent may help you strengthen those connections by providing your brain with a visual context for where that object exists in the virtual game space itself.”

After receiving the Monbukagakusho Japanese Government Scholarship, Howland conducted a two-year research project at the University of Tsukuba’s Entertainment Computing Laboratory that focused on computer-assisted language learning and more specifically, the link between visual-spatial learning practices and vocabulary acquisition. The paper was presented at the International Conference on Advances in Computer Entertainment Technology and was subsequently published by Springer in 2012.

Howland R., Urano S., Hoshino J. (2012) SanjigenJiten: Computer Assisted Language Learning System within a 3D Game Environment. In: Nijholt A., Romão T., Reidsma D. (eds) Advances in Computer Entertainment. ACE 2012. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol 7624. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberghttps://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-34292-9_18

For more information on Influent, visit playinfluent.com. Join the conversation on Discord at discord.gg/sddRP2Z, on Twitter at twitter.com/playinfluent, or on Instagram at instagram.com/playinfluent. Influent can be found on Steam at store.steampowered.com/app/274980.