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#8103051 Jul 08, 2013 at 10:51 AM · Edited 6 years ago
Guild Officer
354 Posts
Initial Impression - especially if you haven't already taken a look at the rgMOOC. From this Machinima, what are you expecting from this course? Do you believe you will have an immersive experience?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CvkSJHqQR98
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www.center4edupunx
Games MOOC Instructor and Designer
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#8104282 Jul 08, 2013 at 02:33 PM
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First of all, this machinima made me want to play those games. The accompanying music and the thought-provoking questions addressed my desires for fun and intellectual growth.

I think this rgMOOC will push me beyond my already stretched ideas of what a text is and give me the tools I need to read these texts as rhetorical artifacts. Based on the preview, I would expect this rgMOOC to be immersive - not only from an online perspective, but also immersing me in what it means to encounter and interact with multi-modal texts.
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#8105228 Jul 08, 2013 at 05:16 PM
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354 Posts
At the ISTE Conference in San Antonio, just a few weeks ago - this Machinima won Judge's choice for Best Special Effects.

I believe this trailer had the exact same effect on those of us who were watching at the conference.
twitter @kzenovka
www.center4edupunx
Games MOOC Instructor and Designer
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#8106775 Jul 08, 2013 at 10:59 PM
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Incredible machinima! I agree with Texan78, I want to play those games!

That's what I call immersive!
Al Gonzalez
Middle School Science Teacher
educatoral.com
Twitter educatoral
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#8109231 Jul 09, 2013 at 11:25 AM
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Of course the machinima is outstanding, but would you expect any less from the Sherry Jones and "company" to do otherwise? I met her at the eLCC conference in Breckenridge, CO this Spring. She also gave a presentation at the FRCC Teaching and Learning with Technology Conference in May, 2013. Someone asked her how she does such amazing work and how much of it there is over such a wide range of sites and topics. She divulged that she only sleeps three hours a night. I can believe that. Many brilliant people can do with less sleep. Leonardo da Vinci is said to have done four hours broken up into naps, Edison, 3-4 hours saying that "sleep was a waste of time,", Martha Stewart and Donald Trump are also among the 4-5 hour sleepers.

As for me, no sleep and I still couldn't do the wonderful things that are in this amazing video and the rgMooc are cutting edge of the spear. No doubt, and "yes" the machinima made me want to play those games. The music was so well-chosen and placed too.

I did sign up with the rgMooc at the start back in May, but have to admit that I became a lurker, it is again, overusing the word, an "amazing" undertaking and extremely well-developed and executed. I have gone to that site many times this summer to see what they are doing.
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#8109473 Jul 09, 2013 at 12:18 PM
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I found it to be...interesting, while I don't feel I want to play all of those games, I can understand a lot better why people do. The music fitted well although I felt most only showed single player rather than the collaborative multi player I was hoping for. It did stimulate my desire to learn more about them, although I would like to dispose of a lot of the jargon to make it truly accessible, maybe because of the sector I identify with.
Steven

There are no stupid questions and mistakes are opportunities to learn in disguise
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#8109917 Jul 09, 2013 at 01:42 PM · Edited 6 years ago
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561 Posts
#8109473 Aescrof wrote:

I found it to be...interesting, while I don't feel I want to play all of those games, I can understand a lot better why people do. The music fitted well although I felt most only showed single player rather than the collaborative multi player I was hoping for. It did stimulate my desire to learn more about them, although I would like to dispose of a lot of the jargon to make it truly accessible, maybe because of the sector I identify with.



Good points about the collaborative multiplayer and the single player, many of the games on the original site for the first week are single player. I believe these were chosen because they are simple and because all of the members don't have to be online and in the game at the same time (in order to be collaborative, like going on quests).

My favorite isn't there, but it is a text based game, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, always had problems getting that babble fish out of the machine.
Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy - Text Based Game - 1984

A friend who is a game developer tried to develop a modern version of the old Atari game of M.U.L.E. Alpha Colony but it missed its Kickstarter goal by $29. Rules are rules. There are several companies attempting to bring back by updating to current platforms this old Atari game. Ever hear of it?

World's Biggest Pac-Man (Free Web Game; Remake)
ImmorTall (Free Web Game; Adventure)
Miestas (Free Web Game; Adventure)
Botanicula (Free Web Demo; Adventure)
Canabalt (Free Web Game; Obstacle Course)
Gyossait (Free Web Game; Horror)
Super Mario Flash (Free Web Game; Remake)
Grey Story (Free Web Game; Platformer)
Take a Walk (Free Web Game; Rhythm)
First Person Tetris (Free Web Game; Remake)

Have any of our members played any of these games?

I have played Pac-Man and Tetris.
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#8109972 Jul 09, 2013 at 01:54 PM · Edited 6 years ago
Guild Officer
354 Posts
For the rgMOOC, they are focusing on single player, so it was an accurate representation of the games students will be playing in the MOOC.

To take a look at some Minecraft and MMORPG Machinima - I would suggest looking at the ISTE SIGVE EduMachinima Fest.

This is a student video - Escape to Morrow Craft

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hRbpb2MSRAA&feature=youtu.be

and one from educators playing around in World of Warcraft.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yyn0ejntD_c&feature=c4-overview&list=UUUT1UrqlEV79TraMafVfX5Q
twitter @kzenovka
www.center4edupunx
Games MOOC Instructor and Designer
Google + gamesmooc@gmail.com



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#8110137 Jul 09, 2013 at 02:26 PM
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Thanks for posting this Kae, the first was really impressive with the pupils VoiceOver clearly laying out the current situation, the potential solution and what was needed to get there; the second I enjoyed the humour of which was only improved by the choice if music.
Steven

There are no stupid questions and mistakes are opportunities to learn in disguise
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#8112304 Jul 09, 2013 at 10:12 PM
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I can't say the video would make me want to take the class, but I emailed with one of the instructors last spring and did think it looked interesting. (I considered lurking, but decided one MOOC was enough.) The video put too much emphasis on playing games, and very little on understanding and critically analyzing games as cultural artifacts. I get that it was probably geared more towards "traditional students" (college freshman/sophomores), but the video is probably more of a turn-off for someone like me.

Immersive? I may define immersive differently than others, but I don't think this course looks particularly immersive. Interesting, and hopefully thought-provoking, but not really immersive.

What the video did make me think of was Ian Bogost. Specifically his book "Persuasive Games", which talks about procedural rhetoric. I'm hoping his writings play a part in this course. (I haven't poked around the course site much yet, but will.)
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#8112378 Jul 09, 2013 at 10:45 PM
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I think the questions along with the video make it very interesting and makes you want to join the course. I think playing the games along with discussion and reflections about the meaning of the games will make for very exciting discussions. Also, it would be fun to explore what makes you want to keep playing. This is the key to why game-based learning has a place in schools. Students who are hesitant to take risks and make mistakes in the classroom, have little to no fear about immersing themselves in a video game even if they don't know how to play. They are motivated to learn as they go.
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#8112384 Jul 09, 2013 at 10:47 PM
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@grasshopper98

I have heard of M.U.L.E, although have never actually played it. A colleague of mine found a re-make he used in his Critical Games class, although I can't remember the details.

I've played Cannabalt, although I prefer Robot Unicorn Attack (which uses the same basic mechanics, but with a wildly different aesthetic).
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#8114922 Jul 10, 2013 at 11:58 AM · Edited 6 years ago
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I've got to say that I didn't 'get it'. It was a stunning short, but I really wondered what it was trying to achieve. As I am familiar with the literary concepts, I was trying to get to see what they would bring to game design or game play. The trailer for the MOOC didn't sell it to me :-( May be I should just play one of the games and work things out this way!

On the other hand, I really like the 2nd life environment aiming to depict Anne Franck's living condition and to bring together students' learning artefacts (I even watched a couple of other videos by the same history teacher). That video tied up the learning space and the learning goals beautifully.

Best

Morgane
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#8115283 Jul 10, 2013 at 01:07 PM
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#8112384 blueAppaloosa wrote:

@grasshopper98

I have heard of M.U.L.E, although have never actually played it. A colleague of mine found a re-make he used in his Critical Games class, although I can't remember the details.

I've played Cannabalt, although I prefer Robot Unicorn Attack (which uses the same basic mechanics, but with a wildly different aesthetic).



I only was involved with the Alpha Colony M.U.L.E project because it was being paralleled with another multi-game site by the same programmer/inventor that I have worked on contract for five years (customer support, game text writing and game testing). Mule was really the first of the multi-player games, it reminds me of an embryonic "Settlers of Catan" game. You did stake claims to land, collect resources and work to eliminate the other three players (Atari only allowed four controllers to be hooked to the console).

I had to look up Robot Unicorn Attack, Robot Unicorn Attack I do love the heavy metal music! I lasted the first jump. LOL
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#8115292 Jul 10, 2013 at 01:09 PM · Edited 6 years ago
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561 Posts
#8114922 Morgane wrote:

I've got to say that I didn't 'get it'. It was a stunning short, but I really wondered what it was trying to achieve. As I am familiar with the literary concepts, I was trying to get to see what they would bring to game design or game play. The trailer for the MOOC didn't sell it to me :-( May be I should just play one of the games and work things out this way!
Morgane



I do see your point and I appreciate a view of someone who hadn't seen the rgMOOC site first, I had, but after reading your comment, I went back and looked again, and although it talks about game, meta text, para text, creating games, it really doesn't focus even one sentence on "games in education" or "classroom use" or "how to add games to your curriculum." Sounds more like a "Game Camp." The video is stunning, I grant that.

I am very interested in the idea of gamification being "paratext" which puts them on the exterior of the real lessons being taught. How paratext is defined is that, ". . . is most often associated with books, as they typically include a cover (with associated cover art), title, front matter (dedication, opening information, foreword), back matter (endpapers, colophon) footnotes, and many other materials not crafted by the author.." (games.adultswim.com) or as Nietzcche and Bradbury are quoted, "We have our Arts so we won't die of Truth."

To wrap up this post, video games, and immersive games are "paratext" they are not the lesson, they are what others think are the lessons and they expand on them through various mediums. An example: Take the Virtual Tour of the Forbidden City, something that IBM did years ago, it would be paratext to reading about the Forbidden City from an Anthropological point of view, watching videos, both current and historic depictions of it, looking at maps, doing online research, library research and talking to anyone who has first-hand knowledge of it. Taking the Virtual Tour of the Forbidden City in itself as a stand-alone was interesting for my students, and there were a few cute little games to play within it, but my students pointed out there was no discussion or explanation as to why it was called "The Forbidden City," the designers forgot who their audience was and what they were trying to teach . . .

Forbidden City Virtual Tour Described by the IBM Marketing this is the best I can do, it is a good example of them touting the ability to do this Web 2.0 type build. It is 2008. Not sure you can still download and play the game anymore, at one time it was simply an online immersive experience.
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#8115434 Jul 10, 2013 at 01:38 PM
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#8112378 miggy wrote:

I think the questions along with the video make it very interesting and makes you want to join the course. I think playing the games along with discussion and reflections about the meaning of the games will make for very exciting discussions. Also, it would be fun to explore what makes you want to keep playing. This is the key to why game-based learning has a place in schools. Students who are hesitant to take risks and make mistakes in the classroom, have little to no fear about immersing themselves in a video game even if they don't know how to play. They are motivated to learn as they go.



The idea of what keeps you playing is very interesting, and I think that as the rgMOOC progresses they talk about what keeps you interested. We did talk about that in the first session this summer, (you can see the links to those weeks in the upper right of the menu bar), Yes, in a game you get to die and are re-spawned, always was interested in the fact they didn't use the term "re-born" or "reincarnated" or "resurrected" -- as an anthropologist I am interested in the use of languages and the symbols of language, perhaps "re-spawned" makes it less "human," anyone else have an idea on why "re-spawned" instead of "re-born?"
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#8115474 Jul 10, 2013 at 01:45 PM
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"anyone else have an idea on why "re-spawned" instead of "re-born?""

I think the terminology actually comes from game designers/programmers. The places where enemies "appear" are called spawn points. When a character "dies" they are spawned anew from a character spawn point. They aren't really "born", because they're not a "new" entity, they are the same entity re-created. Does that make any sense?
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#8117571 Jul 10, 2013 at 08:38 PM · Edited 6 years ago
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I haven't read the other comments yet, because I wanted to give my first impressions.

The visuals in this trailer were compelling: they made me want to explore these games that I haven't seen before. The connection with writing and rhetoric is intriguing, but I'm not sure how that works exactly. I can see how games have characters, setting, plot, mood, etc., but I'm curious what other connections the course designers have in mind.

I'd love to have an engaging trailer like this to start off my year with my students! I think it would really get their attention! I would feel a responsibility to maintain a really high level of content, production values, etc. throughout the year. I'm not sure if I could do it, given my time and resources. I guess one solution would be to get students involved in creating learning experiences for the rest of the students.

*goes back to read other comments...
Kristina Thoennes
Media Coordinator (a.k.a. Library Teacher)
Mooresville Intermediate School, NC

"Never give up, never surrender!" Commander Taggart, Galaxy Quest
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#8126358 Jul 12, 2013 at 03:27 PM
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#8115474 blueAppaloosa wrote:

"anyone else have an idea on why "re-spawned" instead of "re-born?""

I think the terminology actually comes from game designers/programmers. The places where enemies "appear" are called spawn points. When a character "dies" they are spawned anew from a character spawn point. They aren't really "born", because they're not a "new" entity, they are the same entity re-created. Does that make any sense?



Pretty much this. They're using a colloquialism to better link it to the game culture. When (most) gamers hear "respawn," they instantly have a concept to link it to.

In addition, being "reborn" generally implies that one is starting anew, while "respawn" implies picking up more-or-less exactly where you left off.
Here's to all the educated people who don't hate games!
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#8179557 Jul 23, 2013 at 12:18 PM
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#8126358 Hawkye wrote:

#8115474 blueAppaloosa wrote:

"anyone else have an idea on why "re-spawned" instead of "re-born?""

I think the terminology actually comes from game designers/programmers. The places where enemies "appear" are called spawn points. When a character "dies" they are spawned anew from a character spawn point. They aren't really "born", because they're not a "new" entity, they are the same entity re-created. Does that make any sense?



Pretty much this. They're using a colloquialism to better link it to the game culture. When (most) gamers hear "respawn," they instantly have a concept to link it to.

In addition, being "reborn" generally implies that one is starting anew, while "respawn" implies picking up more-or-less exactly where you left off.


That makes sense, I had never though much of the terms, but you are correct, reborn would certainly fit "starting completely over with nothing" and "respawn" would almost infer "resurrection" which would be the same place as you were.

I found this cool site that explains where the term came from in games, first used in DOOM (how many work hours have been lost to that game LOL) History of the term "respawn"

In Minecraft, assuming you have a bed, your respawn point would be in the bed, hopefully you had it in your well-secured home. However, you lose everything you were carrying and unless you can make fast tracks to where you died those items melt away into the game. I don't think in all games you lose your equipment, but probably differs platform to platform. If you had gained some experience points or equipment, it may be gone but you are never back to square one, or "reborn," Nice job of explaining it Hawkye..
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