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“Serious Games, Serious Play” Research Study: “Where Are the Opportunities?” By Michael Cai - Serious Games Conference 2012

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Michael Cai talks about “Serious Games, Serious Play” Research Study: “Where Are the Opportunities?” at Serious Games Conference 2012
ABSTRACT:
This presentation aims to help define the nascent serious games industry and identify key opportunities and challenges. Research findings are based on in-depth interviews with more than 30 thought leaders, worldwide. Key discussion points include the following:
• The overall landscape of the serious games industry
• Growth dynamics in different industry segments
• Market opportunities and challenges in various sectors
• Cost for developing serious games
• How the industry is currently addressing measurement and effectiveness

Published in: Entertainment & Humor, Design
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“Serious Games, Serious Play” Research Study: “Where Are the Opportunities?” By Michael Cai - Serious Games Conference 2012

  1. 1. Serious Games, Serious Play An Industry Overview Presented by: Michael Cai VP Research, Games and Technology at Interpret August 22, 2012
  2. 2. Date: 08/22/12 Study SpecificationsPresenter: M. Cai Key Discussion Points  Overall landscape of the serious games industry  Growth dynamics in different industry segments  Market opportunities and challenges in various sectors  Cost for developing serious games  How the industry is currently addressing measurement and effectiveness MethodologySection:  Survey Methods Telephone interview & 1 E-mail surveyPage:  Timing July/August 2012 2
  3. 3. Date: 08/22/12 Study ParticipantsPresenter: M. Cai  Interviews with Experts  At least 10+ years in industry  Hold positions such as:Section: 1Page: 3
  4. 4. Date: 08/22/12 Sector CompositionPresenter: M. Cai  The experts’ experience covers all the major categoriesSection: 1Page: 4
  5. 5. The Serious Games LandscapeDefining the Market
  6. 6. Date: 08/22/12 Defining ‘Serious Games’Presenter: M. Cai  Common Themes:Section: 1Page: 6 However…
  7. 7. Date: 08/22/12 Defining ‘Serious Games’Presenter: M. Cai “There’s a tech answer and a marketing answer.”Section: 1Page: 7
  8. 8. Opportunity Today vs. ThreeDate: 08/22/12Presenter: Years Ago M. Cai  Acceptance outpacing adoption Serious Games Acceptance AdoptionSection: 1 “I don’t expect an upswing as the industry as a whole isPage: still pretty much in its growth stage, but there has been much greater improvement in the profile.” 8
  9. 9. Opportunity Today vs. ThreeDate: 08/22/12Presenter: Years Ago M. Cai  Reasons Acceptance is growing: • Stigma of • Traditional ways • More powerful ‘game’ is of training, technology vanishing education not • More tools • Gamers getting working available older • Games seen asSection: valid substitutes 1Page: 9
  10. 10. Opportunity Today vs. ThreeDate: 08/22/12Presenter: Years Ago M. Cai  Reasons Adoption is falling behind: • The • Growth is • Employers economy niche- hesitant specific to spendSection: on the 1 workplacePage: 10
  11. 11. Date: 08/22/12 Size of Industry in RevenuePresenter: M. Cai “The answer to that question is very elusive, difficult to pin down. It’s hard to find research on the subject.” “There are indicators of growth, but it’s difficult to quantify.” “It’s all about definition. ShouldSection: Bejeweled count, since it’s known to 1 reduce stress? Or Wii bowling, for all the benefits in nursing homes.”Page: 11
  12. 12. Date: 08/22/12 Revenue GenerationPresenter: M. Cai Direct Indirect Revenue generated Revenue not generated by the game itself by the game itself • Grants • Games for marketing • B2B contracts (used as assets to sell something else) • Sales training • Corporate (improvement in sales efficacy)Section: sponsorship • Process optimization 1 • Licensing software/ (process efficiencies gained) subscriptionsPage: • Microtransactions (in virtual worlds) 12
  13. 13. Date: 08/22/12 Growth SectorsPresenter: M. Cai  Agreement that there is:Section: 1 Growth in Growth in Healthcare MilitaryPage: 13
  14. 14. Date: 08/22/12 Growth SectorsPresenter: M. Cai  Differing opinions for Education and Corporate • Government/institutional • Game feature usage (leader involvement is growing boards, etc.) growingSection: • More money than ever • Companies have the budgets 1Page: • Games lack production value • Economy causing frugality • Designers don’t know how to • Less likely to spend on 14 make educational games innovations such as games
  15. 15. Date: 08/22/12 Growth TrajectoryPresenter: M. Cai  “Much bigger” in the next 5 years due to: More gamers More platforms  As gaming becomes the norm, barriers to entry get lowerSection: 1Page: 15
  16. 16. The Serious Games LandscapeCosts and Timing
  17. 17. Date: 08/22/12 Average Cost of Game/SimPresenter: M. Cai  HUGE variation depending on sector and sales model Licenses; Education Per Classroom ~$100 Subscriptions; Healthcare Bundles $5K-$10K Range $30K-$500K; Corporate Average $65KSection: 2 Fixed Grants; Phase 1 $90K, Government Phase 2 $750KPage: $0 $500K $1M 17
  18. 18. Average Length ofDate: 08/22/12Presenter: Development Time M. Cai  For all sectors, more complexity = more time Education 3 mos. Healthcare 6 mos. Corporate 3 mos.Section: 2 Government 2-3 yrs.Page: 18
  19. 19. Date: 08/22/12 Variables Impacting CostPresenter: M. Cai Complexity Assets # of Platforms Music/Audio Desired Graphics LaborSection: 2 3D TestingPage: 19
  20. 20. Date: 08/22/12 Acceleration in Cost?Presenter: M. Cai  Some say Yes, some say No Yes, making No, making games is games is more getting expensive! cheaper. • Level of complexity has • More off-the-shelf increased tools availableSection: • Trying to make things • Licenses are cheaper 2 simple actually costs • Barriers of entry more are lowerPage: • Cost of labor has grown 20
  21. 21. Date: 08/22/12 Types of MetricsPresenter: M. CaiSection: 2Page: 21
  22. 22. Marketing, Game Development, MeasurementIndustry Challenges
  23. 23. Getting More Industries andDate: 08/22/12Presenter: Schools to Use Games to Teach M. Cai Consider first:Section: 2Page: 23
  24. 24. Getting More Industries andDate: 08/22/12Presenter: Schools to Use Games to Teach M. Cai  Position I: Providing Proof  Publishing documentation that serious games do achieve desired training or educational outcomes  Offering evidence of cost effectiveness, particularly in comparison to other methods ofSection: training and learning 2Page: 24
  25. 25. Getting More Industries andDate: 08/22/12Presenter: Schools to Use Games to Teach M. Cai  Position II: “Stealth Mode”  Removing the stigma associated with the word “games” or taking it out of the name entirely  Hiding “games” within the words “activity”Section: or “learning module” 2Page: 25
  26. 26. Date: 08/22/12 Making Games More EffectivePresenter: M. Cai  Focus on the end user Understand Appeal to end user all types of Educate end requirements end users users • Avoid being • How do people • The game has “chocolate- want to play to make sense covered (PvP, PvE, to the user broccoli” etc.)?Section: 2Page: 26
  27. 27. Games vs. Sims vs. VirtualDate: 08/22/12Presenter: Worlds M. Cai  Analyze the task/information that needs to be taught  Don’t be afraid to combine! “Generally speaking, though, training games need to have a very strong simulation component while mere educational titles may indulge on a moreSection: traditional gaming 2 experience.”Page: 27
  28. 28. Date: 08/22/12 Making Games More EffectivePresenter: M. Cai  Inherent to the game must be:  Design Mechanics Games need to promote learning through their very mechanics, i.e., the act of playing = learning  Point System Must assign points for participation, rewards; giving feedback, motivating, building a relationshipSection:  Stickiness 2 Pay attention to the psychological effects, find out what motivates people to playPage: 28
  29. 29. Date: 08/22/12 Making Games More EffectivePresenter: M. Cai  However, the following pose challenges to innovation: Dearth of Talented Designers “Good developers are usually lured to big studios or become indies… dedicated serious games companies might not find it easy to get the right talent.” Costs Complex design and realistic simulations are not cheap. Also, some institutions are dependent onSection: government funding. 2Page: 29
  30. 30. Date: 08/22/12 Making Games More EffectivePresenter: M. Cai  And the biggest criticism: Need for Measurement Aren’t enough tools that are proven to actually measure the effectiveness of a game; progress is slow on that end.Section: 2Page: 30
  31. 31. Improving Marketing toDate: 08/22/12Presenter: Increase Buyer Interest M. Cai Emphasize Outcomes • Market the outcomes being achieved, make the focus of games secondary Positive Press • Publish more successSection: stories to improve 2 category’s image, showPage: positive side of games 31
  32. 32. Research Inspires… More ResearchFuture Opportunities
  33. 33. Date: 08/22/12 The Ideal Trade GroupPresenter: M. CaiSection: 2Page: 33
  34. 34. Date: 08/22/12 Key Questions Raised by OurPresenter: Experts Wh e ga mob re M. Cai me il do s in f e the ? it are the What rs of ete es param ous gam a seri ? Is it et f mark gment o e? fra ng els thi some Is o ne ahea countr d of y game the ? WhSection: oppo ere do Doe rt termi s 2 lie unities nol b the eyond matte ogy u r? susp sualPage: ects ? 34
  35. 35. THANK YOU!
  36. 36. Useful Links:www.seriousplayconference.comwww.seriousgamesdirectory.comwww.seriousgamesassociation.comContact:sbohle@seriousgamesassociation.com

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