E-Learning and Games – Week 4

Based on photo by xandert found on morgueFile

Based on photo by xandert found on morgueFile

Link to all Weeks     Week 1     Week 2     Week 3     Week 4      Week 5     Week 6

Content:

  1. Game Mechanics
  2. Brainstorm Game Mechanics
  3. Assessment 2
  4. Feedback

Game Mechanics

Jenga, photo courtesy of: Design-Crit.com

Jenga, photo courtesy of: Design-Crit.com

Game mechanics are at the core of a game and decisive for game play. Good engaging game mechanics will make a game fun to play  or challenging and as well rewarding.

Game mechanics can be found in board games (Chess, Backgammon, Jenga) and for board games we often refer to core mechanics. Examples are:

  • Role Playing (Charades)
  • Capture & Eliminate (Chess)
  • Pattern Recognition (Chess, Rush Hour)
  • Memory (Memory)
  • Dice Rolling (Monop0ly)
  • Find the extensive list below at: BoardGameGeek.com
Acting

Action / Movement Programming

Action Point Allowance System

Area Control / Area Influence

Area Enclosure

Area Movement

Area-Impulse

Auction/Bidding

Betting/Wagering

Campaign / Battle Card Driven

Card Drafting

Chit-Pull System

Co-operative Play

Commodity Speculation

Crayon Rail System

Deck / Pool Building

Dice Rolling

Grid Movement

Hand Management

Hex-and-Counter

Line Drawing

Memory

Modular Board

Paper-and-Pencil

Partnerships

Pattern Building

Pattern Recognition

Pick-up and Deliver

Player Elimination

Point to Point Movement

Press Your Luck

Rock-Paper-Scissors

Role Playing

Roll / Spin and Move

Route/Network Building

Secret Unit Deployment

Set Collection

Simulation

Simultaneous Action Selection

Singing

Stock Holding

Storytelling

Take That

Tile Placement

Time Track

Trading

Trick-taking

Variable Phase Order

Variable Player Powers

Voting

Worker Placement

Videogames use game mechanics as well, but besides the core mechanics they are more related to aspect of digital technology.

Find an extensive list of game mechanics at Wikipedia.

We can and should list game mechanics to be able to select what game mechanics we like, but at the end of the day we need to be able to apply game mechanics to a game. This need to happen in the context of the game’s overall purpose. We will read this post: Game Mechanics and Gamification by Andrzej Marczewski on Gamasutra together to get a better idea about how to apply game mechanics.

Brainstorm Game Mechanics

We will do a brainstorm in class for potential game mechanics for the ABC learning game for children (assessment).

Look at this list of Motivators and Supporters (as found on Gamasutra’s post Game Mechanics and Gamification – link is above):

Motivators Possible Supporters
Autonomy Customisation Choice Freedom
Mastery Levels Challenges
Purpose Giving / Altruism Narrative Greater Meaning
Status Leaderboards Achievements
Social Connections Suggest similar users Cooperative “play”
Rewards Points Badges Achievements
Peer Pressure Peer review / feedback / grading systems Boasting   / Bragging system Competitive “play”
Avoidance Lose Points Lose Status Game Over
Scarcity Exclusive / Unique Rewards Reward Schedules
Fun! Real Games Quiz’s Competitions
Screenshot of Writing Wizard, courtesy of AppsPlayground.com

Screenshot of Writing Wizard, courtesy of AppsPlayground.com

Screenshot of Endless Alphabet 2, courtesy of AppsPlayground.com

Screenshot of Endless Alphabet 2, courtesy of AppsPlayground.com

Use 3 motivators from the list above and brainstorm game mechanics for the e-game for your assignment (prep-children recognising letters of the alphabet).

List the factors:

  • Desired Behaviour (eg blow away sand to reveal a letter – find the same letter in a list of letters and click on it)
  • Motivation (Mastery: Learning the letters of the alphabet; Status: receiving a badge, star, completing a level)
  • Supporters (for mastery: being able to read; for status: having your score displayed, completing a series – eg a series of green frogs)

Assessment 2

Assessment 2 – E-Game

Feedback

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E-Learning and Games – Week 3

Based on photo by xandert found on morgueFile

Based on photo by xandert found on morgueFile

Link to all Weeks     Week 1     Week 2     Week 3     Week 4      Week 5     Week 6

Content:

  1. Learning Needs
  2. Learning Styles
  3. Assessment 1
  4. Feedback

Learning Needs

Learning needs are the requirements that the learner needs to learn to pass a subject or to move to the next step.

So, a learning needs analysis is conducted to recognise the gap between the existing skills, knowledge and abilities and those that are needed for the level of education. Once this gap is determined, decisions can be taken as to the type of training required (if this is the preferred action) and the form of delivery.

By conducting a learning needs analysis, you can identify what features are needed in your e-learning game.

Write down the learning needs of your target audience? Start this point of with the desired outcome: what does the learner need to learn?

This is a good point to brainstorm. What is it that you need to expose your learner to?

Read more about Learning Needs at AssetProject.info.

Learning Styles

Every learner has a preferred style of learning. The majority of learners prefer a mix of learning styles.

Look up the link Learning Styles Online and discover which learning style is your preferred one.

Assessment 1

E-Learning Conceptual Layout of Screen: www.emedicus.co.uk

E-Learning Conceptual Layout of Screen: http://www.emedicus.co.uk

Assessment 1 – Research

Feedback

Please leave your feedback in form of a comment. Your feedback and suggestions will help me to make this blog more user friendly. Thanks!

E-Learning and Games – Week 2

Based on photo by xandert found on morgueFile

Based on photo by xandert found on morgueFile

Link to all Weeks     Week 1     Week 2     Week 3     Week 4      Week 5     Week 6

Content:

  1. Game Genres
  2. Find 5 Educational Games (Task)
  3. Game Mechanics
  4. Homework
  5. Feedback

Game Genres

We will start off by comparing last week’s works by you. What definitions did everybody find?

Game genres are different from film genres. While film genres are related to a style of a film or an era a plot is set in, game genres relate more to the way a game is played. This is the actions a gamer needs to perform to succeed in a game. These actions are also called Game Mechanics. Game genres can also be classified by a viewpoint (eg First Person Shooter = FPS and Third Person Shooter = TPS or 3PS) or the style.

Examples are:

Action

Fast paced, player needs to be accurate and quick (eg shooting)

Racing

Competitive games that revolve around vehicles of all sorts racing against each other. Can be single player or multiplayer.

Example: Need for Speed

Sport

Anything about sports, either action of playing the sport with a character or simulation of making a team succeed. Most current sport games are hybrids of Action/RPG or Action/Simulation.

Examples: Fifa, Pro Evolution Soccer, Tiger Woods Golf, Football Manager.

Strategy

A genre that requires planning and thinking to succeed. There is real-time and turn-based strategy. Real-time that the game runs to a clock and that every players actions take place straight away. Turn-based strategy is more of a stop and go experience, players decide on their turns and then the game advances per turn.

Examples: League of Legends, Total War Series, Risk

Adventure

This genre is about solving problems, there may be puzzles, exploring, memorisation and twists along the way. Levels play a part, often there are areas that need to be explored. Most adventure games are hybrids with other games.

Examples: Tombraider, Myth

Simulation

Arcade

Puzzle

FPS – First Person Shooter

3PS/TPS – Third Person Shooter

RPG

Party, Dance , Rhythm

Children

Fitness

Edugames or Educational Games

Find 5 Educational Games

Research Educational Games!

Use the internet to find 5 games (including Ubisoft’s Rocksmith) that are current.

  • Describe the platform,
  • the technology,
  • game mechanics and
  • target audience as well as
  • learning material/topic.

Upload in form of a comment to this post with a link to game images and and info online!

Game Mechanics

Game mechanics are a topic that has created a fair bit of controversy over the years. People vary in their definition of what should be a game mecahnic. Below is a definition that we will use for this class:

A simple division between mechanics and rules breaks down into two things:

Mechanics are the actions you can perform

Rules determine the outcome and

gameplay is derived by balancing these two things.

So, to take a Tetris example:

The mechanics of Tetris are:

Turn a block

Drop a block fast

Destroy blocks by creating a line

The rules of Tetris are

  • Gravity, which accelerates in a stepped fashion according to score
  • Score, which increases in a stepped fashion according to created lines
  • Pile reformation, which determines the effects of a destroyed line on the blocks above.
  • The lose condition of whether the pieces reach the top
  • The next piece determinant, which selects what new piece will show after the previous one has landed.

Source: http://www.lostgarden.com/2006/10/what-are-game-mechanics.html Feb 2012

Homework

Please look at the sites/posts below on edugames or educational games or serious games during the week.

Try at least 3 games and be prepared to speak about them in class!

BBC Educational Games   ZaidLearn   75 Free EduGames to Spice Up Your Course

Feedback

Please leave your feedback in form of a comment. Your feedback and suggestions will help me to make this blog more user friendly. Thanks!