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Kevin Sheehan. Alternate Reality Games Live Action Games Blur the Magic Circle Often involve use of media Examples Assassins/Killer The Beast The Amazing.

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Presentation on theme: "Kevin Sheehan. Alternate Reality Games Live Action Games Blur the Magic Circle Often involve use of media Examples Assassins/Killer The Beast The Amazing."— Presentation transcript:

1 Kevin Sheehan

2 Alternate Reality Games Live Action Games Blur the Magic Circle Often involve use of media Examples Assassins/Killer The Beast The Amazing Race

3 Base Game Started at Goucher College, Maryland in 2005 Played on large college campuses Typically players Zombie Tag + Nerf blasters Lasts until it ends Occasionally have Missions

4 The DigiPen Game Started Fall 2010 First Game (Season 1) Roughly players Missions every night Zombie Starvation hardly enforced Heavily plot-driven Fixed-duration game Big rescue finale on Friday night

5 The DigiPen Game Second Game (Season 2) Roughly players Missions every night except Monday Zombie Starvation abolished Not as plot driven Still fixed-duration game Another finale on Friday night Lots of player complaints

6 Goals for the Third Game (Season 3) Make the game more manageable for players Its an enormous time commitment Better risk/reward from previous games Poor R/R flourished in Season 2 Improved narrative integration Why did I get this for doing that ?

7 Goals for the Third Game (Season 3) Make Zombies more than the Losing Team Zombies would often quit the game Appeal to a group of new players Fresh batch of incoming Freshman Appeal to a group of veterans Experienced Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors

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9 Joining Late Player could join on Wednesday night Roughly 18 Late Joiners Mission Mailers Consistently mailed out every day at noon Communicated essential information clearly Aided the narrative

10 Stronger Risk/Reward The four mission rewards were proportional to the mission difficulty Stronger Narrative All missions made sense sequentially Mission Rewards made sense with the mission

11 Zombies were totally into the game Zombie pride was beaming all week Zombie mission attendance was very high

12 No legal conflicts or interruptions Communication with neighbors was high The police were preemptively informed of the event Designer as player I was able to play without perfect information Game Director handled all sensitive information

13 Marketing Hugely successful (150 players!) Orientation Promotion Word-of-Mouth Flyers & Facebook

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15 Zombie spread was out of control More Players = Faster Spread We expected 100 players at most 37 Zombies at the end of Day 1 Tuesday mission simplified Wednesday reward buffed Thursday mission cancelled Finale was brief

16 Wednesday reward buffed Zombies reached Day 5 numbers by Day 3 Full-team Vaccination to retain Human numbers The game was more casual until the finale

17 Late Joiners….joined late Wednesday night starters didnt sign up until Wednesday This influenced Wednesdays mission objectives Legion Combat 150 players means large-scale combat Combined with new Zombie tactics, this means mass confusion during encounters

18 Friday Night Finale Hardly resembled intended finale Wasnt a climactic ending Humans were killed shortly after reaching the first objective point Human backup plan ended up prolonging a Zombie victory

19 Administration change threatened the game Change in faculty meant the game might not happen Weeks of meetings, often cutting into class time Game wasnt green-lit until 10 days beforehand

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21 No more original zombies Multiple Starters creates a more reliable bell curve Day 1 no longer contradicts core dynamic Tested in 2012 Post-Season Game More dynamically different missions After various mission changes, missions were very similar conceptually

22 Zombie Respawning One of the most tedious elements of play We will be testing an airsoft-inspired respawn system More small-scale encounters 81% of survey takers said they preferred small- scale encounters over legion combat Tested in 2012 Post-Season Game

23 New Game Tracker Passionate HvZ player developed an in-house game tracker Tested in 2012 Post- Season Game

24 Strategic Escalation Every game introduces new strategies from Human and Zombie leaders New N-Strike Elite series could change the game These details, while uncontrollable, must be accounted for

25 Larger Development Team What was a 3-person development team will soon be people New positions created within Art, PR, Design, and Production fields Each position will result in portfolio-worthy content New recruits will work closely with each of the 3 former developers to ensure quality

26 Larger Development Team Were still recruiting.

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