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Gamifying books - The quest of the smarties

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Jeffrey Brand

on 10 April 2014

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Transcript of Gamifying books - The quest of the smarties

700 Sheets 2-up Double-Sided
Gamification Services
Do not rush in just because it's trending on Google.
Do not add a "thin layer" like badges onto content.
Do not sugar-coat boring; design for curiosity, purpose.
Do not force students to play ...
This is the Mandatory Fun Paradox,
(Rothbard & Mollick, 2013) - Wharton, UPenn.
Do not pretend a badge is new or separate from the grade/score.

Do not abandon good, functional pedagogy for hype.

Reward / Points
Time challenges
Levelling up
Gamification: What to embrace, what to avoid
I will pay 50p to the first person to spot any instance of a spelling error in this Prezi.

There, I have now "gamified" this presentation...
Narrative, Low Tech
Hype and Skepticism
COM703 Doctoral Class on Communication Theories, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Gamification of Books?

or the

Bookification of Games?
High games literacy
Low barriers to entry
Game development education
Mobility and convergence
Internet of things
Wearable computers
Why Now?
Dr Jeff Brand, Professor of Communication & Creative Media, Bond University @jbrandinoz
What to Embrace
Where is
Gamification Happening?
Children's books lead the way
Alice for the iPad

The Going to Bed Book
of Games All Around
Interactive elements, sensors

Embedded game mechanics in eBooks

Progress rewards - points, prizes, badges

Narrative adventure playground - choose
your own adventure

Artificial Intelligence - the book responds

Social engagement - Philanthropy


Spot the
What to Avoid
A game is a problem-solving activity, approached with a playful attitude.

Play is manipulation that satisfies curiosity.
What is
a game?
SOURCE: Jesse Schell,
The Art of Game Design
Game Qualities taken from 50 years of attempting to define them:

Games are entered willfully.
Games have goals.
Games have conflict.
Games have rules.
Games can be won and lost.
Games are interactive.
Games have challenge.
Games can create their own internal value.
Games engage players.
Games are closed, formal systems.

Magazines show

Textbooks showing

"...a rule-based formal system with a variable and quantifiable outcome, where different outcomes are assigned different values, the player exerts effort in order to influence the outcome, the player feels attached to the outcome and the consequences of the activity are optional and negotiable."
SOURCE: Jasper Juul,
The Game, the Player, the World: Looking for the Heart of Gameness
A game is...
Gamification vs
Game-based Learning (GBL)
vs Serious Games
is using game mechanics, for a non-game purpose.

is using an existing game in a classroom or assigned learning exercise -
Grand Theft Auto

Serious games
are designed for more than entertainment.
“... the use of game design elements in non-game contexts,”
Deterding et al, 2011.
Common Game
Mechanics (Elements)
Goals and events that must be reached to progress in a game:

Space - navigation and engagement with the game representation
Placement in Naughts and Crosses

Objects, Attributes and States - doing with game objects in the game space
Monopoly houses
Catan Hexes and Settlements
More Common Game
Mechanics (Elements)
Actions - things done to objects in spaces
move, jump, run, protect

Rules - explicit and implicit limits, affordances
Roll 6 to move off home base

Skill - physical, mental, social (real / virtual)
Hit notes in
Guitar Hero

Chance - random seeds
Sometimes tornadoes will wreck your city.
Some images in this presentation are in the public domain or Creative Commons. Others are included to promote the work of others or to replicate the on-screen demonstration of a property being highlighted.
On Copyright
Dr Penny de Byl
Games @ Bond University
Johan Huizinga - animals play games
And none of these needs to be digital!
Prof. Ian Bogost: gamification is ...
a "party trick"
"ification" ... "easy and achievable"
"70% ... of Global 2000 ..."
"80% .. will fail ... poor design"
Growing Awareness
Simple Bank
Ford Focus
Play games - game literacy is essential to
in this space.
Learn about game architecture.
Hire game designers and coders.
Design for narrative-play flow.
Design for different stages of game play:
On-boarding, Habit-building, Mastery.
Meet the needs of different learner/player types:
Explorer, Achiever, Socialiser, Player ...
Prototype, test using non-digital, simple tools first.

"Gamification" is... protean, experimental.
Gamification is not...
always efficacious,

Quidditch in

Word stories, Social Layer for
Maths C

Puzzle-solving in
The Book Thief

Piano keyboard unlocks keys in
Getting to Grade 1
Game play at critical plot points
Full transcript