Abstract: In 2010 1.1 million pupils took private lessons in Germany, with 25% of all German children by the age of 17 having attended paid private lessons at some point in their school career (Klemm & Klemm, 2010). The high demand for support for learn ing curricular content led us to consider an integrated solution that speeds up both the design of mobile learning games as well as their implementation and adaption. This paper describes the iterative development of a game development framework for touch ‑based mobile learning games. The framework focuses on touch‑controlled interaction due to the fact that in 2014 more than 87% of German teenagers possess a smart phone with touch input (Feierabend, Plankenhorn, Rathgeb, 2014) as well as the possibility to engage in short bursts of learning experiences during their idle time, e.g. when commuting. The framework consists of a conceptual component that specifies five different game modes for casual mobile learning games. The technical part of the framework builds on the Unity game engine and offers an architecture that mirrors the game modes and objects from the conceptual part as well as a layer of service building blocks that cover generic functionality like logging, high score management or social media integration. The development of the framework is iterative and cyclic in that each produced game enriches the framework, which in turn accelerates the prototyping and development of further games. Additionally the games themselves are developed and teste d iteratively both concerning usability/user‑experience and transfer, which is described in this paper. developed game prototype as well as the results of our usability tests.
Keywords: Keywords: mobile learning games, touch interfaces, private lessons, usability, software framework, transfer
Abstract: In this paper we consider the problem of making design of digital games accessible to primary school children and their teachers, and we argue for the need of digital games that are easy to alter by young learners. We know from previous research projects that digital games do not enable children to express their creativity at full, in contrast with low‑fidelity prototypes and non‑digital toys (such as card or table top games). Therefore, we propose here a novel approach that serves as a middle ground between digital and traditional table top games, and grants children more freedom to express themselves, articulate their understanding and difficulties both individually and socially. This approach, called card‑based model for digital game design , is an alternative to the current trend of associating programming with digital creativity. A preliminary study was conducted by transposing a digital game into a trading card game, to investigate the potential of the approach: as expected, students part icipating to the study shifted between playing and design thinking. The card‑based model introduced in this paper works full circle: it enables learners to go from digital games to cards and back. In fact, the card‑centric game architecture that resulted from the study allows a digital game to be reified as trading card‑game, so that learners can re‑design and digitize it to obtain a new a digital game, without programming. The next step is to involve primary schools in more complete evaluations of our ne w game development approach.
Keywords: Keywords: Learning, game design, card games, playful play, knowledge transposition, group creativity
Scenario Based Education as a Framework for Understanding Students Engagement and Learning in a Project Management Simulation Game pp181‑191
In this paper I describe s how students use a project management simulation game based on an attack‑defense mechanism where two teams of players compete by challenging each other⠒s projects. The project management simulation game is intended to be playe d by pre‑service construction workers and engineers. The gameplay has two parts: a planning part, where the player make managerial decisions about his construction site, and a challenge part where the player chooses between typical problems to occur on th e opponent⠒s construction site. Playing the game involves analyzing both your own and you opponent⠒s building project for weak spots. The intention of the project management simulation game, is to provide students with an increased sensitivity towards the relation between planning and reality in complex construction projects. The project management simulation game can be interpreted both as a competitive game and as a simulation. Both of these views are meaningful and can be seen as supporting learnin g. Emphasizing the simulation aspect let us explain how students learn by being immersed into a simulated world, where the players identify with specific roles, live out specific situations, and experiment with relevant parameters. Emphasizing the competi tion game aspect we can see how play and competition allow players to experience intrinsic motivation and engagement, as well as thinking strategically about their choices, and hence put attention towards all the things that can go wrong in construction w ork. The goal of the paper is to investigate empirically how these two understandings influence game experience and learning outcome. This question is approached by qualitative post‑game interviews about the experienced fun, competition and realism. Speci fic attention is given to how the understandings of the experience (for instance as a game and as a simulation) is entangled when the students describe their experience. Using the concepts frame and domain it is analyzed how the students conceptualize a nd make meaning of the particular educational
Abstract: Pervasive gaming is a reality‑based gaming genre originating from alternative theatrical forms in which the performance becomes a part of the players⠒ everyday life. In recent years much research has been done on pervasive gaming (Benford et al. 2005, Cheok et al. 2006, Jegers and Wiberg 2006) and its potential applications towards specific domains. Pervasive games have been effective with regards to advertising (VG 2009), education (Pløhn 2013) and social relationship building (Pløhn and Aalberg 2013). In pervasive games that take place over a long period of time, i.e. days or weeks, an important success criterion is to provide features that support in‑game awareness and increases the pervasiveness of the game according to the playe rs⠒ everyday life. However, given the nature of pervasive games, they also pose challenges when compared to more traditional gaming approaches, namely; 1) How can one make the game pervasive according to the players⠒ everyday life? and 2) How can on e support in‑game awareness?. This paper presents a Dynamic Pervasive Storytelling (DPS) approach and describes the design of the pervasive game Nuclear Mayhem (NM), a pervasive game designed to support a Web‑games development course at the Nord‑Trøn delag University College, Norway. NM ran parallel with the course and lasted for nine weeks and needed specific features both to become a part of the players⠒ everyday life and to remind the players about the ongoing game. DPS, as a model, is oriented t owards increasing the pervasiveness of the game and supporting a continuous level of player in‑game awareness through the use of real life events (RLE). DPS uses RLE as building blocks both to create the overall game story prior to the start of the game by incorporating elements of current affairs in its design and during the unfolding of the game as a mean to increase the pervasiveness and in‑game awareness of the experience. The paper concludes that DPS is a promising approach for creating a game stor y which increases the pervasiveness of the game and supports
Keywords: Keywords: pervasive games, game based learning, in-game awareness, interactive storytelling, media analysis, game mastering