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#7926242 Jun 03, 2013 at 01:44 PM
Guild Officer
354 Posts
So what makes it a big "G" Game? Is a big "G" game necessary for learning and if so under what circumstances?
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#7931326 Jun 04, 2013 at 12:04 PM
Initiate
108 Posts
My understanding is that a big "G" game has a strong meta space attached to it. Is it necessary for learning? Probably not. But it demonstrates a level of involvement, interest, and attachment that would certainly make learning more effective as students would continue to be engaged with the game on their own time, making it grow.

I can't remember where I read it, but somewhere in my notes I had something written down about how eventually, the ideal educational game (speaking here of large games used for "gamification") should have nothing left of your original design -- it should have been completely coopted by the participants. I think that would just be really cool and incredible if we could get something like that happening.
Don’t do work that just exists within your classroom... do work that changes the world. -Will Richardson

http://www.gamifymyclass.blogspot.ca
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#7931908 Jun 04, 2013 at 01:55 PM
Guild Officer
73 Posts
I see a big "G" game as one which encourages, facilitates, and supports deep knowledge construction in a community context that is supplementary to the game play. This definitely falls right in line with Missrithenay's assertion that it is not necessary for, but can increase efficacy of, self-motivated and self-aware deep learning.
Games Based Learning Mooc (gamesMOOC)
FRCC Humanities Instructor
The best combination of technophile and luddite

Twitter @ThereseEllis
Google+ therese.catherine.ellis@gmail.com
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#7932076 Jun 04, 2013 at 02:30 PM
Guides
561 Posts
I thin that the definition provided by Jame Gee, "A digital game is a play-based, well-designed, problem-solving experience meant to create motivation, engagement, and often creativity. Humans learn best from well-mentored, guided experience centered on interesting problems to solve, clear goals, copious feedback, and a relatively low cost for failure. This is what good games supply." really says it all.

I really am re-designing all my classes this summer based on the desire to integrate more problem solving experiences and get my students motivated. I think one of the most important points James Gee makes is to have a "relatively low cost of failure," as I teach at a community college with many older and non-traditional students for whom I might be their first semester and their first instructor. I believe one of my goals should be to support their attendance and participation and help them spread their wings so they are comfortable in the next classes they take. I can do that by engaging them, making them have a desire for life-time learning and see they have some fun doing it.

I think one activity I will be doing in the Introduction to Chicano/a Studies is not so much a game (ah, define game... it fits James Gee's definition) is to get my friend who owns the largest comic book store in the USA to give me every comic book that has a Mexican-American/Hispanic/Chicano/a character in it [I have a list it is about 140 total, not many] then have my students pick two of them and read and analyze them for how the character is portrayed, what was the time the comic was written and if it was set in a real time period, what was the role and experience of those Americans as compared to the character. How realistic is it? If a super hero, what were the abilities and how did they compare with other super heros. Then I think I will have them create a comic page which will focus on how you tell a story in pictures and what words do you use. Ah, but that is just the beginning..... still formulating how to do it. This may or may not be for points. The artistic ability would not be graded, it isn't an art class, but content, placement and storyline would be, if it is graded.

I am also working on a monopoly style board game for the Cultural Anthropology class that will either have to do with understanding the syllabus (boring) or a field trip excursion to an actual culture they study, example: "Yanomami" of the Amazon, they could answer questions from time to time and a wrong answer might kill them off or they could loose their field notes down the rapids... ha ha ha Goal would be to do three rotation of the board with each side being three months, thus a year. . . time enough to get a field study done and get back home safely. This would not be for points other than points for participation, that awful "everyone gets a ribbon" that doesn't reflect real life at all, there are always winners and losers.

Open for suggestions in both!
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#7932186 Jun 04, 2013 at 02:51 PM
Initiate
110 Posts
I think I agree with missrithenay up there. While big "G" games can be useful for learning, they're not required. Places where there particularly useful would be subject areas with a lot of "content". It's difficult to fit a lot of content into an engaging education game, so having a meta-game to disseminate some of it would be most helpful.
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#7937494 Jun 05, 2013 at 02:00 PM
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3 Posts
Purpose seems to be what separates a game from a Game according to Gee. This distinction Gee makes between game and Game seems designed to get at games simply as entertainment or media and an understanding of games as actively doing something purposeful for and with the participants. There are many ways that learning can occur, but what I find useful in this article is how Gee points out that Games leverage the way learning occurs: "Humans learn best from well-mentored, guided experience centered on interesting problems to solve, clear goals, copious feedback, and a relatively low cost for failure." Are there other ways to learn? Sure. But what is so interesting (to me) about Games is how well they line up with what we know about how people learn most effectively. Unfortunately, educational institutions often are not structured and designed in such a way as to give learners this process...
~MS
~MS
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#7938845 Jun 05, 2013 at 07:01 PM
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20 Posts
After reading this article i noticed Mr. Gee's various other articles all which i have an interest to read (in my copiuos spare time): But, I do not agree that the 'G'ame player should be presented with all 3 facets (game,meta-game,affinity space). A well designed game, or a lucky game (is pac-man an example of good design) builds these other systems spontaneously, affinity spaces are built by players, meta-games are often created in spite of the original design. There are negative effects realized by players which game designers could often never imagine. A well designed digital game should attempt to predict how meta-games and affinity spaces will develop; yet this task is far more difficult than designing an engaging game.
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#7945023 Jun 06, 2013 at 09:12 PM
Guild Officer
73 Posts
Great point, Zarnack! Do you think the Octalysis method you reference in your introduction offers another insightful way of scrutinizing this assertion?

#7938845 zarnack wrote:

After reading this article i noticed Mr. Gee's various other articles all which i have an interest to read (in my copiuos spare time): But, I do not agree that the 'G'ame player should be presented with all 3 facets (game,meta-game,affinity space). A well designed game, or a lucky game (is pac-man an example of good design) builds these other systems spontaneously, affinity spaces are built by players, meta-games are often created in spite of the original design. There are negative effects realized by players which game designers could often never imagine. A well designed digital game should attempt to predict how meta-games and affinity spaces will develop; yet this task is far more difficult than designing an engaging game.

Games Based Learning Mooc (gamesMOOC)
FRCC Humanities Instructor
The best combination of technophile and luddite

Twitter @ThereseEllis
Google+ therese.catherine.ellis@gmail.com
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#7979290 Jun 13, 2013 at 11:03 AM
Initiate
20 Posts
Hmm, Octalysis, is like deep thought in hhgtg, it can be very helpful - sometimes.
It is useful to figure-out how you can make something fun. I think making something where people have fun is different from gamification - though many would disagree - which is adding fun to something. The distinction is flimsy, but I see the problem with good gamification being that after having some kind of activity one decides to try and add fun, then octaysis can help you figure out what might work, and vastly speed up your design cycles.

However using octalysis to figure out what players will do with (or to) your system (game,Game, or gamified task) is an interesting use of Chou's framework and might work, kind of like flipping the octagon inside out... tricky.

As for using octalysis to present facets of big G games to the player I'm not sure but I feel it is kind of stretching that framework, in the same manner that I feel Mr Gee's ideas are a bit of a stretch. Here is my analogy; if I produce regular full length jeans in normal sizes, should I sell them with markings (lines to aid cutting straight) on the inside to help customers make them into cut-offs after the knees get worn-out? People are customizing the product as they see fit, any 'help' i give them takes away from the satisfaction of re-making them into their own thing.
Further, I am downloading eve online (hoping i don't get sucked into playing it) just to make an avatar for this course. gamesMooc has me customizing eve_online's usage or purpose. They warn they will delete characters that aren't used with some kind of regularity so I guess they have too many 'dark' accounts?
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#7999135 Jun 17, 2013 at 02:51 PM
Guild Officer
73 Posts
#7979290 zarnack wrote:

People are customizing the product as they see fit, any 'help' i give them takes away from the satisfaction of re-making them into their own thing.



Very well put! ^_^
Games Based Learning Mooc (gamesMOOC)
FRCC Humanities Instructor
The best combination of technophile and luddite

Twitter @ThereseEllis
Google+ therese.catherine.ellis@gmail.com
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