Game Idea Generation Games


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Presentation at the Breaking the Magic Circle working paper seminar at Tampere, Finland 10-11th of April, 2008

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Game Idea Generation Games

  1. 1. Bluetooth planets & Shave my baby! Breaking the Magic Circle with Game Idea Generation Games Annakaisa Kultima, Johannes Niemelä, Janne Paavilainen & Hannamari Saarenpää
  2. 2. Main points <ul><li>Game idea generation games as… </li></ul><ul><ul><li>serious games, games for production </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Games, magic circle & creativity </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Playfulness = relaxed atmosphere </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Other worldliness” = thinking outside the box </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Structure = facilitated ideation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Unique design challenge </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Support for creativity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Structure for game design </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ease of use </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Background <ul><li>GameSpace project </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Studying design and evaluation methods for casual mobile multiplayer games </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Frans Mäyrä, Janne Paavilainen, Jussi Kuittinen, Annakaisa Kultima, Johannes Niemelä, Hannamari Saarenpää </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Funded by Finnish Technology and Innovation Funding Agency (Tekes), Nokia, TeliaSonera, Veikkaus (Finnish National Lottery), Sumea/Digital Chocolate, Sulake </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Workshops on ideation, prototyping and evaluation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Understanding of casual games, mobility and multiplayer features </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Idea generation games <ul><li>What are (game) idea generation games? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tools for creating game ideas, meta-games </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Automatic facilitators </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Games for production </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Previous work </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Aki Järvinen, GameGame </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Kes Sampanthar, Thinkcube </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul></ul>
  5. 5. … As Serious games <ul><li>Smith & Sawyer taxonomy </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Games for Health, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Advergames, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Games for Training, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Games for Education, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Games for Science and Research, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Games for Production, and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Games as Work </li></ul></ul>Games for Production Machinima The Movies Video Unreal Art PGR Camera Mode Graphics Remixed Audio Elektoplankton Audio Media Mash-Ups Game Generation  
  6. 6. Creativity & Magic circle <ul><li>Playfulness </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Relaxed atmosphere </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Other world </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Breaking the “box” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Structure </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Facilitation </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. THE GAMES <ul><li>Workshop experiences </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Three workshops </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Over 20 participants </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>16 ideation methods </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Pilot study experiences </li></ul><ul><ul><li>3 months use period </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>7 user groups </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Authentic environments </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. VNA (verbs, nouns & adjectives) <ul><li>Fast and easy method for rapid ideating </li></ul><ul><ul><li>- Simple and fast method for creating </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>casual game ideas </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Three decks of cards filled with verbs, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>nouns and adjectives </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Players take turns to reveal </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>one card on their turn </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Word set based on content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>analysis of 40 casual games </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Design process: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Changing the word set (based on the domain) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Polishing interface </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Tentative results from the pilot study suggest that VNA was the most popular method </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Beauty in simplicity” </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. GameSeekers <ul><li>Associative technique for producing casual game ideas </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Free cards: pictures, patterns </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Casual games” cards: genres, selected social aspects </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Idea game cards: actions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Simplify, rethink, remove </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Design process </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Combining two separate games </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Structural / stimulative </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Network instead of linear form </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Polishing interface </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Tentative results showed that it was rarely most favourite or most disliked </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Negative: too shattered and complex ideas </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Positive: potential cards </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. GameBoard <ul><li>Game for creating structural and solid game </li></ul><ul><li>ideas </li></ul><ul><ul><li>- Includes co-op and solo versions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>- Players create ideas but also compete </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>in a meta-game </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Features game board, set of different </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>cards and score tokens </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Game idea is based on structure of </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>the game (mechanics, theme, UI, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>challenge, content etc…) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Design process: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tweaking the point system and rules </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Polishing interface </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Tentative results show that it was liked, </li></ul><ul><li>but also disliked, mainly due the score- </li></ul><ul><li>keeping </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Negative: unbalanced gameplay </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Positive: structure </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Conclusions <ul><li>Game idea generation games work! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Produce ideas that one wouldn’t have come up with otherwise </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Changes the mood, helps to think outside the “box” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Easy to use </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Design challenges </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Balance between the structure and freedom </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Playing the game vs. playing the idea </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Trying to win vs. trying to create a good game idea </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Players face situations where the goal of the game might be in contradict with the goal of the session </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Balance between simplicity and complexity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Simple games -> high level ideas </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Complex rules, difficult to use, difficult to design </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Documenting? </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Thank You! Annakaisa Kultima Johannes Niemelä Janne Paavilainen Hannamari Saarenpää [email_address] or [email_address]