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Play – experience and pleasure. second order design. Experience. definitions an event lived through – “I just drove home in the storm - that was quite an experience.” participation that provides practical knowledge – “He has experience with several versions of linux.”

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experience
Experience
  • definitions
    • an event lived through – “I just drove home in the storm - that was quite an experience.”
    • participation that provides practical knowledge – “He has experience with several versions of linux.”
    • apprehension of something through senses or in the mind – “If you spin around fast, you will experience vertigo.”

COSC 4126 play - meaning

experiencing video games sutton smith 1986
Experiencing video games – Sutton-Smith, 1986
  • visual scanning – visual perception of screen, parts and whole
  • auditory input – listening for game event sounds and signals
  • motor response – physical manipulation of game controls
  • concentration – focus on play
  • learning patterns – becoming familiar with game structure

perception action cognition

COSC 4126 play - meaning

experience he missed
Experience he missed…
  • Emotional response to meaning
  • Social interaction with other players

COSC 4126 play - meaning

experience as part of game system

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Experience as part of game system
  • input – from game output
  • output – to game input
  • internal decision-making process

designing “experience” is second-order design

COSC 4126 play - meaning

core mechanic dominant repeated play activity
Core mechanicdominant repeated play activity
  • examples
    • Donkey Kong – joy stick plus jump button to maneuver
    • Quake – move, aim, fire, manage resources
    • tag – chase and tag, evade
    • baseball – large collection of skills and strategies

COSC 4126 play - meaning

core mechanic of breakout an atari 2600 classic
Core mechanic of Breakoutan Atari 2600 classic
  • descendant of first video game, pong
  • move paddle left and right to intercept ball bouncing around the game space
  • goal:
    • remove bricks

by hitting with

ball

    • two screens to

clear

COSC 4126 play - meaning

core mechanic of breakout
Core mechanic of Breakout
  • creation of meaning:
    • breakout physics
      • side and brick bounces ‘reflect’ intuitively
      • paddle has five reflecting surfaces to be ‘learned’
    • skills to acquire
    • tactics to learn
      • breakout – get ‘above’ bricks early
      • cleanup – hit final few bricks vertically

COSC 4126 play - meaning

variations on the core mechanic

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Variations on the core mechanic
  • timed play
    • minimize time to clear two screens
  • Breakthru
    • bounce goes through bricks

COSC 4126 play - meaning

more variations

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More variations
  • steering paddle
    • effects ball in flight
  • stick paddle
    • ‘catch’ and release ball from paddle
  • invisible bricks
    • appear when one is hit
  • (12) combinations of variants

COSC 4126 play - meaning

extensions of breakout
Extensions of Breakout
  • Atari Super Breakout sequel
    • many levels
    • more than one ball in play
    • descending bricks
  • Nintendo Alleyway
    • gaps in brick wall – more frequent breakout
    • distinct ‘hit’ sounds during breakout
    • progression of behaviour by level
  • other variations – complex bricks that take several hits to eliminate

COSC 4126 play - meaning

centipede complex decision making
CentipedeComplex decision making

space invaders style game

  • core mechanic – move and shoot
    • horizontal + limited vertical movement (20%)
    • ‘single shot’ firing – one shot on screen at once
  • targets
    • five elements with distinct behaviour
    • objects interact, some threaten shooter
    • feedback loops in population
    • behaviour means decisions are tradeoffs

COSC 4126 play - meaning

so why is this fun constraint

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So why is this fun? Constraint
  • L.S. Vygotsky, 1976:

“Play continually creates demands on the [player] to act against immediate impulse, i.e., to act on the line of most resistance.”

    • pleasure delayed and constrained is pleasure enhanced, S & Z, p.330

COSC 4126 play - meaning

constraint and
Constraint and...
  • rules – restrict play, enhance pleasure by inefficiency
  • free play – rules restrict the space of activity and ‘resist’ play
  • lusory attitude – self control by acceptanc eof aritificial system
  • stylized behaviour – dramatic, ritualistic sense of belonging

COSC 4126 play - meaning

so why is this fun autotelic

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So why is this fun? Autotelic
  • Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi,1991

(Chicks send me highly)

games are (mainly) non-utiliatarian

games provide their own intrinsic and artificial goals

COSC 4126 play - meaning

types of pleasure leblanc 1999 examples
Types of pleasure, LeBlanc, 1999examples?
  • sensation – game as sense-pleasure
  • fantasy – game as make-believe
  • narrative – game a drama
  • challenge – game as obstacle course
  • fellowship – game as social framework
  • discovery – game as uncharted territory
  • expression – game as self-discovery
  • submission – game as masochism

COSC 4126 play - meaning

types of coginitive arousal apter 1991 examples
Types of ‘coginitive arousal’,Apter, 1991 examples?
  • exposure to arousing stimulation
  • fiction and narrative – character identification
  • challenge
  • exploration
  • negativism – rule breaking
  • cognitive synergy – imaginative play
  • facing danger – risk within magic circle

COSC 4126 play - meaning

others from play definition
Others from ‘play’ definition
  • Callois
    • challenge, risk, mimicry, vertigo
  • Sutton-Smith
    • concentration, visual scanning, audio, actions, learning patterns

COSC 4126 play - meaning

flow csikszentmihalyi
Flow - Csikszentmihalyi

COSC 4126 play - meaning

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