A Player’s Gotta Play

I’m sticking these Extra Credits videos here for reference as I dig into publishing some of my game analysis here (in words! on the internet! that others can read!).

Some initial analysis of these after the jump…

Big ideas…

  1. How mechanics translate into experience.
    • This is how psychology drives behavior — how we react to fear, curiosity, fun, excitement, etc. Also, how elements of sound, sight, and math can create a certain psychological state. The REASONS for a person’s experience of a game are key.
  2. Knowledge of genre conventions
    • This cultural knowledge can be examined — why do certain conventions exist?
  3. Understand the relation between games.
    • This cultural knowledge creates genre (and defies it) — why does one game abandon or embrace Element X in comparison to a different game?
  4. * Analyze Your Experience
    • Definitely a skill developed through participant observation in Cultural Anthro. An essential part of acting, as well. Also an elemental part of my personality — it creates awkwardness. Seems to be related to an ability to iterate — to self-critique.
  5. Recognize your Biases
    • Again, a LOT like what happens in Cultural Anthro and acting — being aware that your experience and habits are not universal. The best solution to this is outside perspective, but self-analysis is key.
  6. Play ALL The Games!
    • I’ve got clear biases, but I do sample a lot of different styles. There may be some genres I want to bone up on a bit more as I delve into this.
  7. * Check out menus and buttons first to determine priority
    • Also helps understand menu/control design decisions
  8. * FOOS-es
    • This helps show how the mechanics want to be played (and what you need to do to encourage variety)
  9. *Break Points
    • Here is where you sequence break. Systemic breaks (where systems don’t work), technical breaks (where the technology don’t work). Understand what breaks the user’s experience, what doesn’t. See how others compensated for the breaks.
  10. Dilettante. Play lots of games, for only a few hours at a pop.
    • This might be a little hard for obsessive me, but likely necessary despite that.
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