MOIDA : 모이다

MOIDA is a cultural heritage-themed augmented reality (AR) app game. It is part of a system I conceptualized to work towards solving a social problem in South Korea. The problem I identified was the prejudice that Native North Koreans (NNK's) face in South Korea. For these groups to peacefully coexist after reunification, there should be a mutual understanding of how to work together.

Seoul hosts the MOIDA system. It combines traditionally styled MOIDA board game cafés, at which points accrued from MOIDA app gameplay can be redeemed, with a MOIDA community that exists virtually and is formed in reality at MOIDA cafés and events.

MOIDA cafés employ a 1:1 ratio of Native South Koreans and NNK's. South Koreans who are biased against NNK's have typically never interacted with them. A long-term pedagogic goal of MOIDA is to help demolish the othering of NNK's.

MOIDA app gameplay takes place collaboratively in and around the Seoul subway system, allowing users to play without going out of their way. Geofenced objectives activate push notifications from the app. Geofencing places virtual boundaries on physical spaces. Players who enter into these spaces are matched with anonymous partners to complete time-sensitive AR objectives.

To view the full project book (pdf), click here.

MOIDA Project Overview

MOIDA (모이다) is a Korean verb meaning to converge or come together. The logotype color palette is adapted from Korean national colors.



MOIDA Color Study

MOIDA (모이다) is the coming together of groups from different parts. To generate a color palette, I conducted a visual ethnography of unifying characteristics of the North and South Korean traditional landscapes–from architecture and patterns to clothing and symbols. I used some of my photos from South Korea, and I referenced North Korean imagery from the few Instagram accounts of photographers, such as David Guttenfelder and Jaka Parker, who have had access to take photos in North Korea in recent years. 


On my third and fourth visits to South Korea in 2016 and 2017, I partnered with PSCORE, a North Korean human rights NGO in Seoul, to volunteer English tutoring with Native North Koreans. Meeting these beautiful people and learning about some of the ways they have struggled to integrate into South Korea prompted the MOIDA project.

The direction of this project was inspired by many places and games from the Games for Change movement; and notably by the model of Mad Priest Coffee, a café in my hometown of Chattanooga that employs refugees. MOIDA was also largely informed by Korean cultural heritage, as well as Korea’s modern coffee and gaming cultures. The placemaking that MOIDA strives to achieve capitalizes on these existing strengths to build community.

To view the full project book (pdf), click here.