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Teaching Game Design to Teach Interaction Design

All educators seek the magic trinity of attention, comprehension, and retention. For interaction design educators, the struggle to achieve these goals is even greater. Hopeful designers enter the field with lofty aspirations, yet they still need to learn the fundamental principles of design and build the core skills of an interaction designer. While keeping design students engaged is undoubtedly a challenge, there is a medium that allows students to internalize the fundamentals of design by experiencing them.
Games have become ubiquitous in our culture. They are inherently engaging. Some are good and some are… not. By teaching design students how to design games, educators expose their students to the basics of interaction design in ways that the students can experience themselves. Concepts like affordance, skill building, storytelling, and emotion become real rather than just conceptual. Altering the parameters of their games helps students feel the effect these concepts have on their games.
This method has the potential to improve interaction design education across the board by ensuring that design graduates have internalized the fundamentals by the time they are ready to enter the field. What’s more, any design educator can learn to teach interaction design by teaching their students how to design games. After all, it’s fun!

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Teaching Game Design to Teach Interaction Design

  1. 1. Teaching Game Design to Teach Interaction Design Let’s Play @cwodtke | CHRISTINA WODTKE
  2. 2. I teach at CCA I use game design to teach Interaction design
  3. 3. You may think Game design is all about fancy equipment and softare
  4. 4. Let’s make a game Exercise via Brenda Romero
  5. 5. Draw a path
  6. 6. Create a way to move • Dice roll • Answer a trivia question • Everyone moves • Person behind moves • Roshambo • Card draw • Pass, but gain currency • Physical skill
  7. 7. Design Conflict • Speed people up • Slow people down • Extra turn • Lose a turn • Swap places • Block
  8. 8. Add anything you need to make it playable 3 minutes
  9. 9. Playtest
  10. 10. You won! You made a game. Was that so hard? Was it fun?
  11. 11. Sure I worked at Zynga… but I worked on platform! I was nerveous teaching game design too…
  12. 12. It all started with Story Time Studio 1: Story that is….
  13. 13. Students made pop-up books, exploring how to use interaction for emotional effect…
  14. 14. Students made Interactive Fiction, exploring dystopias
  15. 15. IF software will teach you about interaction flows
  16. 16. And IF teaches you how to consider story in space over time
  17. 17. Interaction Design and Game Design are Fraternal twins First video game 1958
  18. 18. Shared Knowledge You need the same skills for both
  19. 19. AFFORDANCES (signifiers) Things that look pushable, get pushed. Things that look pullable, get pulled.
  20. 20. AFFORDANCES Buttons that look pushable, get pushed
  21. 21. But check out these affordances
  22. 22. Feedback
  23. 23. Alphabear won’t embarrass me socially
  24. 24. Direct Manipulation
  25. 25. Harry Potter Years 1-4 on Ipad Direct Manipulation Harry Potter Years 5-7 on Ipad Virtual Controller
  26. 26. Concept Models to Communicate to team
  27. 27. Architecture concept model Architecture concept model
  28. 28. How areas of site interlock Via Andrew Hinton @inkblurt Consider conceptual models over sitemaps
  29. 29. Stone Librande’s One Page Designs are concept models (Spore)
  30. 30. https://www.interaction- is-information-architecture
  31. 31. The IA of Minecraft
  32. 32. The IA of Kingdom Rush
  33. 33. Same but better Playtesting, Prototyping, and RITE done Right
  34. 34. A game is unknowable until it is played
  35. 35. Board games are HUGE!
  36. 36. Paper prototyping
  37. 37. More iteration
  38. 38. Different & New Ideas Look to Game Design to stretch us in new directions and explore difficult topics
  39. 39. MDA Mechanics, Dynamics, Aesthetics
  40. 40. CAMP Context, Architecture, Mechanics, Poetics
  41. 41. Luck and skill
  42. 42. Irregular Reward Schedules
  43. 43. Irregular Reward Schedules
  44. 44. continuums
  45. 45. Art?
  46. 46. Culture
  47. 47. Ecology
  48. 48. Craft
  49. 49. Empathy
  50. 50. You learn when you care
  51. 51. They will save the world
  52. 52. And have fun doing it
  53. 53. Required Reading for Educators
  54. 54. Thank You @cwodtke | CHRISTINA WODTKE