Breaking Mc Stine Ejsing Duun

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I didn't use the slideshow at my presentation at Breaking the Magic Circle seminar - but never the less it is here.

Content: Applying Michael Apters ideas on pervasive games. Discussing the concept of the Magic Circle. in relation to alternative reality games.

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Breaking Mc Stine Ejsing Duun

  1. 1. A Game Magically Circling Stine Ejsing-Duun PhD Fellow Centre for Playware University of Southern Denmark [email_address]
  2. 2. Scope of Paper <ul><li>Covers following: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The magic circle as a concept </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Alternative Reality Games (ARG) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Theory of psychologist Michael Apter </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Theory of game researcher Jane McGonigal </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Huizinga – the starting point <ul><li>A few of Huizingas ideas: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Rules separate play from ordinary world </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Rules are: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Fixed </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Unambiguous </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Reliable </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In play the players are isolated from the ordinary world </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Rules and Goals (According to Zimmerman & Salen) <ul><li>Rules </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Limit possibilities </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Goals </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Through these players judge which possibilities are relevant </li></ul></ul><ul><li>This means that, inside the magic circle : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>There is a pool of relevant possibilities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Rules apply </li></ul></ul>Possible actions - Rules apply Not possible actions - Rules do not apply
  5. 5. Magic Circle inadequate <ul><li>In ARGs players do not know if the rules apply or the actions are possible </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A pool of “Rules might apply” and “Actions might be relevant” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>We need something else than the Magic Circle to describe the situation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Paper uses Michael Apter </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Michael Apter – in brief (I) <ul><li>Apter about play: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ Play is a state of mind’ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>’ Play is a mental set towards the world + our actions in it </li></ul></ul><ul><li>To understand human actions  understand motivation, which is a sense of: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Arousal (high or low) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Goals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Means </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Meta-motivation decides what level gives pleasure: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>High arousal (Process-oriented  paratelic) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Low arousal (Goal-oriented  telic) </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Apter – in brief (II) <ul><li>In play psychological bubble is experienced </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bubble removes harm and threats (they are not experienced) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>… players still want to experience danger though… </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Tiger with a cage: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>-Tiger +cage+crowd = Boredom </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>+Tiger -cage +crowd = Anxiety </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>+Tiger+cage -crowd = Senseless (Apter does not mention this) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>+Tiger+cage+crowd = Excitement </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Anxiety  Excitement <ul><li>Jane McGonigal </li></ul><ul><ul><li>In ARGs players perform believe </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Pretending the cage is not there – knowing that it is </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>My thesis: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Players are motivated to play with: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The relation between anxiety and excitement </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Not knowing if the things they meet are real with potential threats </li></ul></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Integration - interpretation <ul><li>The player define where the magic is: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Motivation: Regulate activities  level of arousal </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Rules and goals: Helps interpreting relevance of events (to certain extend) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Narrative: Tool for integrating events </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Players embrace events – they give them meaning </li></ul>
  10. 10. What does this imply? <ul><li>In design </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Leave room for doubt and interpretation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Give tools and opportunity to “cast the magic circle” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The ordinary world (as opposed to game world) is present during play </li></ul><ul><ul><li>But it is viewed differently </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>… perhaps even after playing the game? </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Thanks! Feel free to contact me: Stine Ejsing-Duun Centre for Playware University of Southern Denmark [email_address] http://www.linkedin.com/in/stineejsingduun

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