What is a north star? It is the goal, the thing you are aiming for, and when you arrive, you can launch. http://www.boxesandarrows.com/view/building_a_vision_of_design_success,
Game designers have an inherent North Star because they are building a game. It’s FUN. Game designers constantly ask “Is it fun yet” and if the answer is no, they don’t launch. And their team doesn’t launch. Even when it’s late late late. Because there is no point in launching an un-fun game.
Game designers are very user centered. They have to be.
So when you are working on your project, your northstar should be a strong emotion.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y9Z-3mz3j6U&feature=BFa&list=PL8E8E672C0031DC3A Warning: this video will make you cry. It’s awesome. Watch 4:28-7:20
We are often facile when discussing needs in web design. If we tap deeper into basic needs, we can get more satisfying products.
We are limited in how we talk about emotion in Wed Design. We talk about delight, and frustration. But there are many more words we could be designing for…
As well, Game designers are much more comfortable with creating negative emotions than wed designers, who Mostly aim for “happy.” But as part of a sequence, a slight negative can increase a positive.
Dan Brown’s Communicating Design Game. Sometimes stress can teach.
This is a classic persona my old company CarbonIQ made for a casual gaming site. It was useful. But….
Amy Jo Kim has developed different player types that you find in Social Games. Each one has his or her own play style. Knowing these needs shapes the feature set and core loop.
Backyard Monsters takes the classic tower defense loop (build defense, get attacked, redo) and adds complexity by letting you also attack and build offensive as well as defensive tools.
Paper beats rock, rock beats scissors, scissors beats paper. The game of rock paper scissors lizard spock adds In two more elements for added complexity. And nerdity.
A constraint is usually about resource management. How much energy/money/stuff you need.
The pinch is the place where you run out of something. I.e. You run out of lives in the arcade, and you reach in your pocked for a quarter. Or twelve.
Energy is a typical social game pinch. You can solve with money or with being “social” i.e. begging from friends.
In cityville, real estate is an excellent pinch. You could just buy more land, but you could also upgrade to better buildings, rearrange your items, or store something. More options + more fun play.
In Castleville the pinch is also part of the play. New land is shrouded in shadow, so you may discover new mysteries as you look to expand.
Manipulation is tough. We go to the theater to be manipulated. We like a certain amount of orchestration of our feelings. But we sure don’t like being taken advantage of.
Name the persuasion techniques being used by these social games. Trust me, a little time on Facebook and you can collect all six. And find a few new ones.
Zynga invented the “doobers” which is when something good happens you see an outflowing of stars or coins. It’s the equivalent of the slot machine flowing out, and very satisfying.
There is a certain satisfaction in kicking a friends bum. However, if you have a place where not much social is happening, be sure to motivate me by making me beat my own high score. Not feel lonely.
Moving from a novice to a master is why we play tennis, chess or even do things like knitting or woodworking. We humans love to know we are getting better at something.
Classic waterfall. Even web people don’t like this anymore.
From Art of Game Design, by Jesse Schell. This his process diagram, and looks accurate to me. Game people often talk about “wandering in the wilderness”: the time while you are trying to achieve fun.
Make it pretty, make a profit. Often web and app design just slaps some pretty on it at the end.
Again, game designers seem way more user centered than most others. They don’t say “we’ll do two rounds of testing.” They’ll test over and over until fun arrives.
Sid Meir, Everything You Think You Know Is Wrong. Watch 18:40-23:53 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bY7aRJE-oOY&feature=BFa&list=PL8E8E672C0031DC3A
Most web app designers through learning into a quickie tutorial in the beginning. But game designers, focused on mastery and that satisfaction weave it through the game.
Dance Central: you have to do the moves along with the dancer to earn points
Dance Central made learning the moves a key part of the game, not just a simple add on. You feel like you are really learning to dance.
Mechanics of Magic: Seven Lessons from Game Design
The Player Should Have The Fun, Not The Designer Or The Computer The algorithms were, of course, very fun to construct and interesting to discuss outside of the game. The players, however, felt left behind -- the computer was having all the fun -- so we cut the feature. From a Gamasutra Article “Analysis: Sid Meiers Key Design Lessons”Christina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
EmotionYour northstar is for the heart, not the head
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y9Z-3mz3j6U&feature=BFa&list=PL8E8E672C0031DC3AChristina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtkeWarning: this video will make you cry. It’s awesome. Watch 4:28-7:20
Design for An Emotion Conversion is a crap north star
Are all the emotions Uxr’s have to design for Frustration Satisfaction Delight? We design in Black and WhiteChristina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke is a world of amazing emotions in technicolor just waiting We have been designing in Black and White. There
A better list of words to design for Needs CONNECTION CONNECTION continued HONESTY MEANING acceptance safety authenticity awareness affection security integrity celebration of appreciation stability presence life belonging support PLAY challenge cooperation to know and be known joy clarity communication to see and be seen humor competence closeness to understand and PEACE consciousness community be understood beauty contribution companionship trust communion creativity compassion warmth ease discovery consideration PHYSICAL WELL-BEING equality efficacy consistency air harmony effectiveness empathy food inspiration growth inclusion movement/exercise order hope intimacy rest/sleep AUTONOMY learning love sexual expression choice mourning mutuality safety freedom participation nurturing shelter independence purpose respect/self-respect touch space self-expression water spontaneity stimulation to matter (c) 2005 by Center for Nonviolent Communication Website: www.cnvc.org understandingChristina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
Boys like peace and harmony and order tooChristina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
There is no shortage of “organization porn” on the web. We have a deep seated dream of a place of tidy harmony.Christina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
Life with Alacrity on his itunes rating practice http://www.life withalacrity.co m/2006/08/usi ng_5star_rat.h tml What if software holding large collections made it even easier to create order?Christina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
Actually, this is rather pleasurable.Christina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
If I don’t log in every Obviously day, I am Mr. Right tortured with men I missedChristina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
“People find role playing cheesy, makes them self conscious. The game forces you into uncomfortable situations. You take a situation and a pattern and match them up.. It might be a pattern you avoid because you aren’t good at it. And it creates much more teachable scenarios.”Christina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
Grace (62/ female/ widowed/ Little Rock, AR.) “I like playing my favorite games online, but if I can play with friends, well that’s even better!” Personal Background: Her husband has passed on. She has two grown kids, both of whom live far away. She misses the kids, but has a fairly large circle of friends that she spends time with. Technical Proficiency : Limited. Can use her browser and her email. MS Word confuses her, and she doesn’t like using it. Doesn’t know what an OS is. Tends to click yes if the browser prompts her to do anything, and will click wildly until things work. History with games: Plays crossword puzzles daily and saves them. Plays card games, PhotoJam, but is offended by South Park cartoons Game’s opportunity: If Grace can be convinced to 2001 participate in community activities, she will become a loyal user of the site. She needs to be sheltered from the sick and twisted content, however. Christina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
Richard Bartle http://www.mud.co.uk/richard/hcds.htm Drawing: Frank Caron http://frankcaron.comChristina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke and what features support the behavior desired is also useful. Understanding behavioral patterns in player types, Maybe more useful.
4 Key Engagement Styles in Social Gaming Express Compete Explore Collaborate Copyright Amy Jo Kim
Celebrate microwins! Actions taken successfully create mini-rewards in the form of doobers (stars and slot- machine sounds).Christina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
Leaderboards There is a certain satisfaction in kicking a friend’s rear. However, if you have a place where not much social is happening, be sure to motivate me by making me beat my own high score. Don’t make me feel lonely.
MasteryCrafting in Castleville, and many other gamesis all about repetition. No real skill is gotten bythe player. Is the user really feeling masteryhere? In Bubblewitch saga, like many match- three games, it’s all about beating your own score as well as others. You can see and feel your improvement.
Christina Wodtke www.eleganthack.comFTUE (first time user experience) and elder game at a minimum. Almost All game designers I’ve met talk about @cwodtke no web/app developer I speak with discusses these much if at all. Is a tutorial enough?
Yahoo rewards group managers with customization toolsChristina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
Okcupid invites you to be a moderato r once you’ve been an active member for awhileChristina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
A pleasant lieChristina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
From Art of Game Design, by Jesse Schell. This his process diagram, and looks accurate to me. Game people often talk about “wandering in the wilderness”: the time while you are trying to achieve fun.Christina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
How most web site makers view designChristina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke
Grace and Glory enemy concept designs by Yusuke Hashimoto. From the upcoming video game Bayonetta. Graphic design in games is Concept design by Min Zhou http://minzhouportfolio.blogspot.com/ begun day one, and informs and inspires all product choicesChristina Wodtke www.eleganthack.com @cwodtke