LIU BINBIN IVAN
a Game & Gamification concept Document
The topic of focus was on insomnia (of those ages 13 - 18), it's causes, effects as well as treatment and prevent.
Expository article on gamification
I was tasked to work on the concept of cheating and it's implication in games as well as gamified systems
Both An Qi and I were tasked with 3 main variables. Namely, an article that pertains to gamification, our own game, as well as a GCD (gamification concept document) , a document that explains the different considerations for the game we had made. These projects had the same aim and value, that is to expose us to the concept of gamification through topics that we were interested in. Through these projects, we were able to have a gist of how gamification is applied in real-life. As these tasks were done individually with the guidance of our external mentors and were effectively started up by us, we had the liberty to research on topics of our interest. I chose to create a game based on Insomnia for it's relevance in many people's lives. We were challenged to work on novel topics for our article and I settled and decided to work on the phenomenon of cheating.
<-- An Qi and I with our awesome external mentors Kumar and Prapim!
Expository Article on Gamification
This was the main deliverable we had to work on at the start of our WOW! attachment. We were originally assigned to brainstorm on topics pertaining to gamification, but was prompted by Keith, one of the co-founders of the company to delve into more controversial topics. I ended up working on "Cheating in gamified systems" as my topic of research. This was refreshing to me, as although I know of examples of such cases, I had never purposefully researched for the implications of cheating, especially in regards to businesses. "How can cheating be both good and bad and can there be some sort of middle ground?" was a thought that I pondered about throughout this task.
We went through several drafts and made many edits leading up to our final product. But these were some of my takeaways:
- It is an article and not an essay, more visual elements such as pictures, lists and bullet points could aid in captivating the reader as well as making the article more digestible. Sources also need not be heavily dependent on research papers as alternative sources such as forums could prove to be useful.
- Formatting. I had to use various subtitles in order to better classify the various content I have presented as it allows for easier reading. Using hyperlinks are also beneficial for people who want to read up on more specific content.
- From my research, I learnt about more examples of gamified systems (such as Pokemon Go and the 10k step challenges), the reasons why people cheat in such systems alongside it's impacts as well as mitigation strategies taken.
The Game and Gamification Concept Document
Other than the article, we were also tasked to create our own game using the Gametize platform. The platform allows many functions such as flashcards (to place information), various challenges such as polls and quizzes, teams with achievements and rewards that we got to do ourselves. Here we were also introduced to a website known as flaticon where we could obtain images of icons that we could for our game.
We also attended a workshop called "Gamification 101" and was introduced to the gamification concept document, a document with a framework that helps us in creating our game. Here we learnt about the 5D framework which I would talk about below. We were hence tasked to create one for our own game as our third and final deliverable.
3 content knowledge / skills learnt
- I have learnt about several things on games such as the 4 player types. Namely killers (ranking oriented), socialites (community oriented), achievers (achievement oriented) and explorers (novelty oriented). I also learnt about the various categories of known as SAPS (Status, access, power and stuff) whereby the first 3 (SAP) are at the upper-bound of Maslow's hierarchy of needs and are hence more valued. (Stuff is quite superficial but really effective in attracting new players, long-term players tend to continue to play when there are SAP rewards which attracts them to stay)
- The 5D framework of Defining a problem, Determining your goals, Deciding target behaviours, Describing your players and Designing your gamification strategy. I learnt how to go about using this framework and learnt of it's importance in designing any sorts of solution. (Such as if there is no problem, should you still try to fix it?)
- I learnt more about the concept of gamification and it's application. Gamification is the incorporating of game elements such as challenges, points, rankings and rewards into real-life. I learnt that it is an effective method to use in the context of engagement be it in education or consumer engagement. It was insightful to learn the ins and outs of creating a game.
2 interesting aspects of your learning
- It was interesting to make my own article and have it published through word press. It was really eye-opening to have the freedom, going about researching on various sources that show the two sides of a coin. I learnt how to structure my content into a concise manner through the help of my external mentors and gained various tips on how to make an article. Working on the topic of "Cheating" would have never crossed my mind in school and I am very happy to have had the opportunity to not only research on the topic but also share my opinions on a platform.
- Other than our external mentors, we had to credit the developers of the program for the platform. When we were there, we also saw their technical crew working with stacks of codes of which I am incapable of working on. The gametize platform is a software and hence runs on code. It was interesting to me as this showed me the importance for collaboration between different groups of people (a technical team and a marketing team for example) but also highlighted the significance and prominence of coding.
1 takeaway that can be applied for life
- It is important to keep an open-mind and be embracing of different opinions. From a designing standpoint, other people might be able to identify flaws in your model that you might not have caught on. We should not feel dejected but instead take their feedback and strive for improvement. Towards the topic of gamification, those who are unfamiliar with such a concept might take it lightly directly associated gamification with purely gaming when it's a lot more complex than that. It is, from studies, an effective method in engaging an audience and we should be accepting to the possibility of incorporating gamification into various aspects of our life.