I2GD:7 – Expanded game experiences

Right. Four weeks have passed since my last blog on the course site. I will write one for this lecture as well. If you for some reason read this before actually watching the video cast I suggest that you fast forward 38 minutes into the show, and watch it to the end, before watching it from the start. Doing so will make everything make more sense.

0:00 – Introduction

0:40 – Expanded game experiences
Game experience in a wider sense, the context of the game experience, hetrogenic usergroups.

The model in the podcast is based on studies of causal games (but also relevant for hard core game experiences).

0:1:43 – Game experience
What in the game design makes us comfortable in the game, makes us enjoy the game, what makes the game fun, what makes the game good.

How can we design the experience that the game provides.

2:24 – Immersion, Flow, Usability and Playability

3:08 – Context
The context of the experience, highly subjective, time and place of playing.

4:11 – Transformation of digital play
Games are used for many different purposes. Different games are played in different situations (at work, with friends, mobile while waiting, workout in dance games).

5:45 – Causal games phenomenon
Rising phenomenon of simple games.
Accessability is part of the genre, play in the browser. Factors before/outside actual play affects the experience.

7:00 – Games as services
Distribution is not part of the actual game (XBLilve Store, PS Store), but part of the experience. Achievements, gamer tags, avatars, may or may not be part of actual game play.

8:14 – Example: Mobile games experiences
You must download the game to your phone, there are several different services for such games. It may be much work and/or difficult to get mobile games, such games are usually of a causal nature. (Here I expected the question “If mobile games are so hard to get, are they still causal?, that question never came. and the segment reached no real conclusion.)

9:55 – Is gameplay all we need to design?
… no, we should design the whole experience. (This sort of relates to my thoughts on Form. gameplay corresponds somewhat to Rules, but the rules are not the entire experience of play.)

10:52 – Designing experiences?
Not only designing one part of the experience.

11:09 – Design process
Is decentralized, different actors do different parts of the game. Usually not in communication with each others. Marketing, designers, service providers, different views on the game.

The game designer is not the only one that has to think about the experience of the game!

12:41 – The player?
The experience of reading reviews, discussing the game with peers, and actually purchasing it reflects on the gameplay experience later. (The influence of a game hype could be related to this. Those that anticipated Fable thought it sucked, but those that came into the game with no preconceptions on how it would be quite enjoyed it.)

13:37 – The holistic experience?
If I am looking for a causal game, do I want to install something to my computer? “Preplay” is part of play experiences.

Buying collectibles, game art, magazines, modding, expand the game experience.

15:17 – Decentralized design decentralized experiences?

Expanded game experience (EGE) model
Used for understanding game experience from this (above) context.

17:11 – Activities
Six different activity steps, when designing the game experience. (Pretty picture at 17:47.)

  • Information retrieval – Forums, reviews, advertising
  • * Do you choose to play? Decide not to play?
  • Enabling activities for the player – Buying hardware/console to play. (Patching windows-machines in order to play.)
  • *
  • Preparation for the game experience – setting up the board, turning on console
  • *
  • Gameplay itself – Depends on the game
  • * Do I stop?
  • After-play – Recap of experience, seeking information, speaking with friends.
  • * Replay or…
  • Abandonment of game product – Temporary removal?

21:49 – Summary of the EGE model

22:15 – Critical decisions
See * in list above.

25:16 – User states
Situations of the player. Changing our activities/preferences during the experience.
(Pretty picture at 26:56.)
The player is in different states between different steps of the EGE model. (But really, the user may be in many different states for each of the steps. The state of the player affects the experience in the different steps. Different players will experience it differently.)

29:44 – User context and resources
(Pretty picture at 30:00.)
Shows resources that the player may (or may not) use in different states.

31:45 – motives & drivers, resources, worldview & beliefs, situations
Affects the above.

32:14 – Affordances & thresholds
What is possible to design? Provide different things to the player. Require them to do things/restrict them from doing things.
(Pretty picture at 33:16, again.)
What is the target of the design?
Experience should make sense, investment – quality.

37:59 – EGE

  • Larger experimental context
  • Changing user states
  • Balance between affordances and thresholds

39:26 – Expanding your horizon for versatile game experiences
The model is work in progress, expands the horizons on game experiences.

http://intro2gamedesign.wordpress.com/2009/03/10/7th-week’s-podcast-and-assignment/ – Lecture 7, the EGE model.

http://intro2gamedesign3.wordpress.com/2009/02/11/classic-game-review-the-great-giana-sisters/ – My last blog on the course page, a game review.

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