Influent is a Language Learning Game focusing primarily on vocabulary acquisition and pronunciation while giving players the freedom to learn what they want without pencils or books!
User reviews: Mostly Positive (659 reviews) - 75% of the 659 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Mar 20, 2014

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Notice: If you are purchasing Influent for the first time, choose the language you would like to learn. If you've already purchased one language, you can buy additional languages as DLC.
The game's User Interface is currently available in English, Japanese, Russian, German, Swedish, French, Spanish, Italian, European Portuguese, and Brazilian Portuguese

Buy Influent - Русский [Learn Russian]

Buy Influent - Português [Learn European Portuguese]

Buy Influent - Latina [Learn Latin]

Buy Influent - Italiano [Learn Italian]

Buy Influent - Português do Brasil [Learn Brazilian Portuguese]

Buy Influent - Suomi [Learn Finnish]

Buy Influent - Norsk [Learn Norwegian]

Buy Influent - 한국어 [Learn Korean]

Buy Influent - Deutsch [Learn German]

Buy Influent - 普通话 [Learn Mandarin Chinese]

Buy Influent - български [Learn Bulgarian]

Buy Influent - English [Learn English]

Buy Influent - Français [Learn French]

Buy Influent - Svenska [Learn Swedish]

Buy Influent - Español [Learn Spanish]

Buy Influent - 日本語 [Learn Japanese]

 

Recent updates View all (8)

December 28, 2015

STEAM WINTER SALE [-80%]



SAYOUNARA 2015

Want to pick up a new language in the new year?

Now’s your chance to grab a copy of Influent at 80% off!

For new players, the game comes packaged with any one of sixteen different language packs for $9.99 $1.99 while existing users can pick up any of the Language Packs as DLC for $4.99 $0.99.

This offer ends Jan 4th. Get em while they're hot!


USER INTERFACE LANGUAGES

Three new UI Languages are here! Korean, Norwegian, and Finnish have been released with the latest update and can now be selected within the Languages section of the Main Menu. ːsteamhappyː

3 comments Read more

Reviews

“Influent is a great way to learn new vocabulary. I love the idea and I love the execution. Influent gets a 9 out of 10.”
9/10 – http://www.gameskinny.com/cv8lb/influent-a-fun-supplement-to-language-learning

“It’s that gaminess that makes Influent stand out; it’s where it separates itself from the pack, chiseling a place in any respectable study round.”
4/5 – http://www.hardcoregamer.com/2014/05/28/review-influent/86161/

About This Game

Andrew Cross is infuriated!


For three long years, he sat confined to his work, developing a device that he firmly believed to be a technological breakthrough in the way people would interact with the world around them. A device that could scan any object in the real world and then provide its name in any language! Duly dubbing his fancy new invention the "SanjigenJiten," Andrew arranged an appointment to demonstrate the device's amazing capabilities at the world's largest technology corporation, Technoglobe International.


But while on his visit, he fell for a girl he met in the lab, and while she stole his heart, someone else silently stepped in and stole his device! Now, Technoglobe has gone and swiftly marketed the SanjigenJiten as their own, even laying claim to the very name he had so cleverly concocted!


But Andrew Cross has a plan. He's made an even better version of his SanjigenJiten and launched an online campaign, swearing to learn 300 words in a foreign language to raise awareness of Technoglobe's blatant theft and prove his device really works! But does the SanjigenJiten really work? Can Andrew actually pull it off?! Play Influent and find out!!!



“By immersing the player in the target language, Influent closely models the way we naturally learn our native language. I suggest giving Influent a try.”
-Steve Hammond, Somnambulant-Gamer

Inspired by Dreamcast titles of old (namely Shenmue and Toy Commander) Influent immerses players in a fully interactive 3D environment where the names for absolutely every object in the game can be gleaned with a single click! In fact, even more information can be learned with a double-click! Every door, drawer, and cabinet can be opened with a right-click here and a right-click there, revealing more and more things to be learned! Packed to the brim with hundreds of native audio pronunciations (painstakingly recorded specifically for this game), Influent offers players a unique opportunity to enjoy learning both vocabulary and pronunciation in the language of their choice.

With 10 languages currently available for download, Influent combines the joys of playing a video game with the language learning process, resulting in real-life rewards and achievements that will remain with players for the rest of their lives.

Influent: Language Learning Redefined.

  • Audio from native speakers
  • Synonym swap functionality
  • Learn at your own pace!
  • Fully interactive modern apartment
  • Over 420 words to collect and master
  • Includes Nouns, Adjectives, and Verbs
  • 10+ Languages to choose from (more coming soon!)


  • How exactly should I purchase the game?
If you're confused about how to purchase the game, please read the following example about Mark and Patricia.

If Mark wants to learn Latin, he should purchase the "Influent - Latina [Learn Latin]" store item. If his wife Patricia then wants to learn Swedish, Mark should then purchase the DLC store item entitled "Influent DLC - Svenska [Learn Swedish]." This can also be done from Patricia's perspective and will have the exact same result with Patricia purchasing the Swedish base game and then also buying the Latin DLC for Mark, herself, or even anyone else, to use on the same computer.

  • Do you have plans to release more languages? When???
New Language Packs will be released as they are completed. A full list of languages that are coming soon can be found on the Official Website.


Check out the Community Hub for Frequently Asked Questions and other cool stuff!

A BRIEF BACKGROUND


Influent is a Language Learning Game focusing primarily on vocabulary acquisition and pronunciation. It was initially developed in Japan at the University of Tsukuba's Entertainment Computing Laboratory under the Monbukagakusho Government Research Scholarship.

After research funding ran out, further funding from a wildly successful Kickstarter Campaign allowed for the completion of the game. A research paper on the ideas surrounding the game and its applications was published by the Information Processing Society of Japan (IPSJ), which can be viewed in its entirety here.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP or later
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Pretty much any 3D graphics card
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Made with Unity
    Minimum:
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.5 or later
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Pretty much any 3D graphics card
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Made with Unity
    Minimum:
    • OS: Any (tested on Ubuntu)
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Pretty much any 3D graphics card
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Made with Unity
Helpful customer reviews
285 of 328 people (87%) found this review helpful
16 people found this review funny
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: December 13, 2015
Influent is not useful for learning a new language. Walk through a landscape and learn a smattering of nouns for household objects and nothing else. No grammer rules, no other words, no cultural context. Can you guys even understand how useless that is? Learning how to say random words for objects you will probably not need to talk about without ever communicating anything about them whatsoever?

Hell, you wll never need most of these nouns as a beginning student of a foreign language anyways. It would be far more useful to simply learn how to say "How do you say this?" in whatever language you are learning so you can learn words that are actually useful to you.

I learned way more useful information on youtube videos in an hour than I ever did with this.

The only good thing about this is the soundtrack by Lifeformed. It is the soundtrack from the game Dustforce and it is truly excellent. I have no idea why it is in this product.

You will not learn how to communicate a single complete thought or simple sentence with this software .
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A developer has responded on Jan 16 @ 6:29pm
(view response)
274 of 336 people (82%) found this review helpful
312 people found this review funny
1.3 hrs on record
Posted: January 3
Learn some Japanese with this awesome game!

When you're done you'll have an awesome vocabulary like this:

Compuuta
Sandwichi
Banana
Orangi
Paipah
Poustah
Spongi
Booru
Pinapuru
Cheesu
Pasta
Jaah
Toasta
Mufin
Kamera
resaikuru
Tishue
suprei botoru
Pen
Heado phone
CD
Bitamin
ceriaru
gamu
lampu
DVD playaa
Guitah
Guitah ampu
Sofa

Man I can't wait to go to Japan and show my awesome Japanese!! xD
11/10
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A developer has responded on Jan 16 @ 6:47pm
(view response)
61 of 79 people (77%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 10, 2015
This game is extremely unhelpful. All you do is click on random objects and the game tells you what they are. If you are serious about learning a language I would definitely not recommend this for you.
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50 of 64 people (78%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
14.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 15, 2015
INFLUENT on PC 8/10
Tested with the Spanish DLC

The bottom line:
Learning vocabulary was a lot of fun and every student of a new language will find pleasure in this title. For intermediate students the magic in a language is learning verb conjugation and you will need to find this elsewhere.

Mechanics:
Walk around a 3D apartment and poke household objects to reveal their name. Every 10 object names form a List; repeat the List 3 times correctly and you have mastered those 10 words. Repeat until you find and master all 420 object names.

This 'game' works because You get to choose which ten words to learn next; you made the choice and this engages the mind.... It’s a bargain price for learning 420 words so quickly, don’t miss out.

100% Steam Achievements in Spanish took 14 hours; my mother tongue is English and I am fluent in French. Next week I will try Japanese and I suspect it will take much longer....

My wishlist to the devs: Find a way to create a verb conjugation module, and an advanced vocabulary module…. I would definitely buy. I think you are on to something good.

Oct 2015
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15 of 17 people (88%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: January 17
An okay tool with several drawbacks

Having years of university training and real-life experience in teaching not only foreign language but also second language acquisition classes, I can say that Influent can work well as an additional teaching tool to the ones learners already have, provided the players know what they’re doing and are aware that Influent is not actually teaching them how to speak the target language; It merely trains them in recognizing words from that language. Given that, Influent is a fairly okay at achieving what it’s supposed to do and I can see it helping certain learner types, although at the same time, it is likely to be just a waste of money to a lot of people, especially as there are products out there that are much better at helping people learn foreign languages. The major drawback being that Influent does not teach grammitcal articles (grammatical gender) for European languages. More about that further down.

Primary Issues of the software

Influent (2016) was developed by the US American game designer Rob Howland and published with the help of his alma mater, the University of Tsukuba (筑波大学), and Japan’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (文部科学省【MEXT / 文科省】). Sadly, despite the academic support behind this project, its issues are clearly visible right away and it is very obvious that Howland does not have a linguistic background. The protagonist in the game simply translates nouns or adjective-adverbs from English into the target language and it is limited to objects inside the virtual apartment.

To highlight what I mean, we can briefly look at the impressively handy, elaborate, yet slim Langenscheidt’s picture dictionaries, which contain words, transliterations, pictures (and if you own the TING pen even audio clips of proper pronunciation) of local foods, instruments, sports, holidays, animals, tools, jobs, lab & hospital equipment, body parts, family members, ethnic groups in the target culture, climate zones, and so on and so on and it even includes the necessary vocabulary for any occasion reaching from birthdays to funerals or visits to the barber shop or the postal office. And it is merely twice the price of Influent's base game despite offering that much more. Not only that, the roughly 300 page book can even be brought with you, so if you don’t know a word, you can show it to people.

Influent on the other hand is limited to objects inside the virtual apartment (as can be seen on the store page’s screenshots) and the vocabulary is very narrow, albeit very useful. It can even be argued that one could simply use a normal dictionary and a language tandem to probably achieve equivalent if not superior results.

http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=603282417

Gameplay mechanics

The player can move the protagonist around a virtual apartment, click on objects, listen to how they’re pronounced and look at how they’re spelled in the target script or how they’re transliterated into Romaji, Romaja, or Hànyǔ Pīnyīn (depending on the language pack). Additionally, the player can create vocabulary lists and make his / her own quizzes. The game will then show and say a term and the player will have to click on the correct item in the room. You can pretty much achieve the same effect by pasting post-its around your actual apartment and by having a smartphone dictionary app pronounce certain terms for you, in case you forget how to say them.

You could say that doing that in the game would be less work for you, but writing down new vocabulary, having to use / activate different areas of your brain (to write it down and to read the word) leaves a much bigger, better imprint of the target word in your memory than merely reading it and having the computer program pronounce it for you.

Critique and conclusion

There are multiple issues when it comes to Influent, first of all, there are products out on the market that are much better than Influent and cost about the same, so I suggest going out to bookstores and checking them out before buying this. Of course it's definitely possible that they don't have any better alternatives in your area, in which case Influent might be good. Secondly, when learning a language, you usually learn four basic fields: Reading, Writing, Listening, Speaking. Influent can only provide the two “passive” skills, reading and listening, you still need a training partner or a formal education to learn (or at the very least have someone correct) the writing and speaking parts. If you cannot find a partner in your area, there are multiple online forums and websites that focus on connecting people for specifically that purpose alone. Influent will also not teach you anything about sentence structures, tenses, clauses or (in-)formal language, in fact, it will not teach you anything beyond the available vocabulary.

When it comes to European languages with grammatical gender, Influent will also not provide you with the necessary grammatical articles (Der, Die, Das in German, for example). Let's say you click on the bed, Influent will merely play an audio clip saying "Bett" while showing the correct spelling, but it won't say "Das Bett", which would definitely have been the better choice. Grammatical gender is essential for many European languages, ommiting that means that learners will lack crucial communication skills.

I can see Influent work as something you use besides the learning tools you already have (like school- and exercise books as well as audio tapes or movies), especially when trying to learn gender neutral languages, but it definitely isn’t enough to learn a language with. I like the digital / game approach to learning languages, however the execution isn’t perfected yet and still needs some work.
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