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‘Merry Metro’ Project Gamifies Edappally Metro Station

In Education
August 07, 2021

As a part of its Golden jubilee celebrations, CUSAT joins hands with Kochi Metro to gamify Edappally Metro Station as a part of the ‘Merry Metro’ project. this is done in association with Aster Medcity and Yeldo Mar Baselios College, Kothamangalam. Dr. Manu Melwin Joy, Assistant Professor, School of Management Studies, CUSAT is implementing the project.  

The theme of ‘Merry Metro’ is to help the passengers unleash the hidden hero within each one of them through various activities. the gamification has integrated five elements into the ecosystem of Metro Station to ensure maximum engagement and involvement of the passengers. These satisfy the 5Cs of Gamification- Cause, Challenge, Curiosity, Choice, and Constraints.
The game element of challenge is a Squat Corner – Be a Health Hero Activity. Passengers are challenged to do 30 squats by standing on the ground sticker. They have to face the big cut out of the heart which says “Do it for me”. If they complete the activity, they win a free metro ticket worth Rs 50 or donate it to students of government school, Kalamassery to buy books. They will be given Health/ Social hero badges as a token of appreciation. On the first three days, 85 passengers volunteered for the activity in which only three people opted for money, and all others donated to the school. 26 women participated in the activity. Former Vice-Chancellor of CUSAT, Prof. Dr. R Sasidharan participated in the Squat activity and collected his social hero badge.

According to Ashwin Ramjith, who is in his 50’s and is a regular runner, taking up this challenge is a reminder of his commitment to health.  Ms. Sherin P who completed the activity despite hurting knees, sedentary lifestyles have made us lazy and the lockdown has made it worse.
At the puzzle corner, passengers will be given a puzzle that is to be solved in a minute and a resource constraint as it is a jumbled jigsaw puzzle. The puzzle is regarding the independence struggles (Passengers have to join the jigsaw puzzle photos of freedom fighters and famous places related to
independence and recognize them) as we are to celebrate the 75 th Anniversary of Independence next year starting with a yearlong initiative
“Azadi ka Amrut Mahotsav” by the Government of India. Winners can contribute books to students of government schools. They will also get
badges titled “Social Hero”.  All of them could take selfies in front of the A kiosk that says “ I am a Puzzle Hero”.

76 passengers volunteered for the activity. Most of the volunteers were youngsters and, 28 were women. According to Irshad Abdul Salam, the one who cracked the Subash Chandra Bose jigsaw, this activity was a reminder of the great sacrifices that our forefathers have done to gain our freedom and reminded us to do service to the society in which all small ways possible for us.
The 3 rd game ‘Healthy Stairs’  is Curiosity. The Mascot of Merry Metro was kept way ahead of the stairs saying “Take Stairs, stay healthy” to
attract attention and create curiosity among the passengers. On the three fleets of stairs of Kochi Metro Edappally station which contain 45 steps,
stickers are displayed so that passengers will be motivated to use stairs and will be more aware of health and well-being.  511 passengers took
stairs in three days from 5 pm to 7 pm.  The idea was to catch the attention of passengers to use stairs rather than using escalators. Siddharth Sankar, a passenger shared that this initiative should be extended to other stations and station design should be reinvented in such
a way that the passengers will feel like climbing the stairs.
Passengers who are moving out of the station usually throw away their tickets mindlessly in the box kept near the exit. In the 4 th game ‘Vote for your Hero,’  the team transformed that activity into a voting Process. Now, Two ballot boxes are kept near the exit with different themes where the passengers can use their ticket to vote. For the first three days, the team kept with the football themes (Messi Vs Ronaldo). Colorful posters of both Messi and Ronaldo were stuck on the ballot boxes to attract the passengers.

Compared to the other activities, the passion of the passengers towards football and towards the players Messi and Ronaldo was evident throughout the process. In three days, 652 people participated in the vote for your hero activity. A friend’s gang of Varun, Nithin, and Vishnu spend some time posing in front of the poster and took a video of all of them putting their tickets in the Ballot Box of Ronaldo.

5 th game ‘Robot for Sanitization’, the passengers are doing a contribution and feel like a hero. A Robot that will be helping the passengers with sanitization. It will check whether they are wearing the mask properly and if they don’t have a mask and will give them one. It will also check your temperature and inform the same to the passenger.  By following covid Protocols, they are working as a Health Hero saving the society.  The
robot used for this game named ‘Sabarot’ is developed by Ajay Antony Joseph (Assistant Professor) and Praveen Kumar N (Data Scientist) from Yeldo Mar Baselios College along with their students Sidharth PS, Anandhu KR, and Bibin Paul.

Passengers were very curious to see the Saba Robot mainly because of the commando theme selected for his attire. He is wearing a leather Jacket and Sunglasses with his stands kept forward where people can avail their sanitizer and check the temperature. Nearly 103 people slowed down to have a glance at the Robot. Kids were attracted to Saba. Master Neerav, who was going with their parents literally pulled them towards saba and spend some time inspecting saba and, finally took a selfie with him.

Benny Collins, who had a lengthy discussion with Mr. Ajay said that these installations will help the future generation become curious about
futuristic technologies. Ms. Helen enquired about the job possibilities of robotics since her son is showing so much interested in robots. Kochi Metro – Edappally Station will be the first completely gamified metro station in the world. Being a Gamification Evangelist who tries to take the concept of Gamification to all spheres social activities, Dr Manu took initiative to come up with a unique project titled “Merry Metro” with a focus on commuter engagement.   
The program will be carried out as a pilot project from 3 rd August to 15 th August for a duration of two hours a day (5 pm to 7 pm). The Student Volunteers from School of Management Studies, CUSAT conducting the event. Official Logo of Project Merry Metro was created by Anjan Satish, Winner of the national award for Outstanding Creative Adult with Disabilities, instituted by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment. The mascot of the project is a little girl named “Kunjanna”. The mascot is carefully selected to uphold the entire spirit of the project. The tagline of the project is “Be with Metro, Be like

Dr. Manu Melwin Joy, an accomplished academician, writer, thinker and Gamification Evangelist who believes in making the whole world a game
field. His research focus includes Gamification, Game based Learning, Serious games and Game thinking. He has completed certification in Gamification from University of Pennsylvania and Design Thinking from University of Virginia. Apart from publishing articles in accredited journals, he has authored seven books with the most recent one titled “PLAYBOUR – Gamification for employee engagement”. He has handled more than 90 international and national sessions on gamification for corporates such as IBM, The Hindu Group, The Federal Bank, Apollo Tyres etc. and educational institutions like the University of Technology and Applied Sciences (Oman), Princess Nourah Bint Abdul RahmanUniversity ( Kingdom of Saudi Arabia), international University
of Humanities and Development(Turkmenistan), Alatoo International University (Kyrgyzsthan), Zanzibar University (Tanzania) to name a few.

He has also done many gamification consultancy assignments in many different organizations  like (Seamless Travel Technologies – Gamify their e-commerce platform, NUALS – Gamifying their five year LLB Curriculum, Zappyhire – Gamifying their recruitment process, Inker Robotics – Creating a Serious Game to teach robotics) to name a few.