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IMGD 2900 Digital Game Design I Class 8: Monday 11.26.

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Presentation on theme: "IMGD 2900 Digital Game Design I Class 8: Monday 11.26."— Presentation transcript:

1 IMGD 2900 Digital Game Design I Class 8: Monday 11.26

2 Today’s topics Playtesting Types of rules / players / play The Mystery of Play Assignment 10

3 Playtesting!

4 Round 1 Beadwalkers vs Hambingers Colored Blocks vs Pearl Etched Spears DNA vs Team Ishmael Team Rocket vs Tempest Serenade Team Sauce vs Stormriders Team Subtlety vs Team Tsukuru Polygonial vs The Professor

5 Ask your testers to think out loud. Shut up and pay attention. If testers get quiet or hesitate, ask what they’re thinking. Watch faces, not the screen. Write down everything, especially questions. Be alert for surprises.

6 Post-test questions What is the goal of the game? Was anything confusing or difficult? Is there any info that would have been good to know before starting? What did you like? Dislike? How would you describe this game to someone who has never played it? Write down the answers.

7 Round 2 Beadwalkers vs Pearl Etched Spears Colored Blocks vs Team Ishmael DNA vs Team Rocket Team Sauce vs Hambingers Tempest Serenade vs Polygonial Team Subtlety vs Stormriders Team Tsukuru vs The Professor

8 Post-test questions What is the goal of the game? Was anything confusing or difficult? Is there any info that would have been good to know before starting? What did you like? Dislike? How would you describe this game to someone who has never played it? Write down the answers.

9 Today’s vocabulary What are rules? Characteristics of rules Types of rules and players Categories and styles of play Autotelic Lusory attitude The Mystery of Play

10 What are rules? Rules are the formal structure of a game. They are one of a game’s defining qualities. Game = Toy + Rules + Goal

11 What are rules? Rules are not the experience of play. You can change the experience without changing the rules.

12 Thought experiment (LeBlanc)

13 Three to Fifteen 1. Two players alternate turns. 2. On your turn, pick a number You can’t pick a number already chosen by either player. 4. If you pick three 3 numbers that total 15, you win. 5. If no numbers are left, and there’s no winner, it’s a draw.

14 Three to Fifteen

15 How are they the same? How do they differ?

16 Characteristics of rules Rules limit player actions.

17 Characteristics of rules Rules are complete, explicit and unambiguous. Example: The stump at second

18 Characteristics of rules Rules are shared by all players.

19 Characteristics of rules Rules are fixed. Even games with changing rules have rules that control how the rules can be changed.

20 Characteristics of rules Rules are binding and have authority. They are meant to be followed.

21 Characteristics of rules Rules are repeatable and portable. Local variations and ambiguities must be resolved.

22 Types of rules Constituative Operational Implicit

23 Types of rules Constituative The “underlying” rules In digital games, these are instantiated in code.

24 Types of rules Operational The “written” rules Instantatiated in I/O and UI. Expressed as affordances.

25 Affordances The opportunities for action made available by an object or interface. Norman 1988 Affordances are not the user interface!

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27 Types of rules Implicit The “unwritten” rules Instantiated in etiquette, history and culture

28 Types of rules The formal identity of a game emerges from its operational and constituative rules. This game and not that.

29 Rules are toys! All three types of rules are potential sources for innovation Question them! Play with them!

30 Types of players Good sports Hardcore Poor sports Cheaters Spoilsports

31 Types of players Good sports: Cheerfully abide by all three typesof rules. Honest, respect authority of the game.

32 Types of players 2. Hardcore: Study rules & boundaries, take advantage of exploits and ambiguities. Pro athletes, serious gamers.

33 Types of players 3. Poor sports: Will do anything to win. Violate the implicit rules. Will not surrender to the lusory attitude.

34 Lusory attitude Willingness of players to accept artificial constraints in order to experience pleasure Required to enter into the play of a game Sportsmanship

35 Types of players 4. Cheaters: Secretly violate or ignore the operational rules. Disrespect rules, yet still value the game and want to win.

36 Types of players 5. Spoilsports: Openly violate or ignore the authority of rules. No interest in winning.

37

38 Categories of play Callois: Les jeux et les hommes (1961) Agon Alea Mimicry Ilinx

39 Categories of play Agon Competitive play Examples?

40 Categories of play Alea Chance-based play Examples?

41 Categories of play Mimicry Role-playing, make-believe, simulation Examples?

42 Categories of play Ilinx Pursuit of sensual imbalance Examples?

43 Styles of play Paida Ludus

44 Styles of play Paida Wild, Improvisational, free-form Examples?

45 Styles of play Ludus Regulated Formalized Rulebound Examples?

46

47 Play is autotelic Autotelic (auto = self, telos = goal) Action undertaken for its own sake Playfulness Csikszentmihalyi, Flow Play = superfluous action

48 Play is inefficient “In anything but a game, the gratuitous introduction of unnecessary obstacles to the achievement of an end is regarded as a decidedly irrational thing to do, whereas in games it appears to be an absolutely essential thing to do.” Suits

49 Play is useless Why wait for the starting gun? Why not just cut across the track? Why save dessert for last?

50 Into the mystery... “To observe the rules of the play structure promises much greater pleasure from the game than the gratification of an immediate impulse.” Vygotsky

51 The mystery Pleasure constrained is pleasure enhanced.

52 Games must be magnetic Must provide their own usage motivation Otherwise why bother playing? An important motivation is novelty This is why digital games push the envelope of computer hardware and software

53 Game designers are sculptors of desire, architects of seduction.

54 Games are flowers.

55 But remember! Insects need nectar.

56 Nobody needs digital games.

57 Assignment 10: Polish your 1- or 2-player game Refine and polish your prototype Update your journal as you work Post the game on your team Web page Bring your game and journal to class

58 Objective 1: Refine and polish your prototype Design requirements Must meets the definition of a game. Must be designed for exactly one or two players. If two players, both on the same computer. No custom audio. Use only library sounds. Must run without breaking or errors. Must follow The Rules. Must be entirely self-documenting. Need not conform exactly to your treatment.

59 Questions to ask yourselves Is our game easy to understand? What can we do to make it clearer? Tutorial? Is it too easy or too hard? What can we do to fix it? If it's a 2-player game, is it equally easy and fun for both players? If not, what can we do to balance them? Can we make it more attractive? Tweak the color scheme, improve layout, choose better sounds? Did we see any interesting techniques or ideas used by other teams that we can steal adapt for our project? Was another team's project obviously similar to ours? If so, what can we do to distinguish ouuselves?

60 Add lines like these to the top of your main.js file // Ultra Boring Adventure II // Team Boring // Joe Lazy (jlazy) and Mary Idle (midle) (optional) // Released to the public domain // Coding help from Mark Goodguy

61 Objective 2: Update your journal as you work Document your creative process Ideas, code fragments, sketches Journals will be inspected

62 Objective 3: Post the game on your team Web page Upload all game files to your server Create a clearly labeled link that starts the game when clicked Make sure the link actually works Post before noon this Thursday 11.29

63 Objective 4: Bring your game and journal to class Copy all game files to USB drives. Both team members should bring one!

64 Questions? Next class: Thursday 11.29


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