Design for Games and Play

Design for Games and Play birthed great games and products such as: the DishcoRack, Warknogue, and IDSim

I followed the Design for Games and Play course package throughout my third year. I have always had a curiosity for game design, but never enough knowledge to actually do anything myself. During the first course, I worked in a team to use game design principles such as Self-Determination Theory and the MDA framework to develop a game. It was the first time we used Unity3D and weren’t sure what we started. We followed a bunch of tutorials and before long we were coding our very own game. We came up with a old-school 2D RPG fused with a modern story-based 3D game. The user could swap between the fantasy 2D world and the realistic 3D world with the press of a button. The game was a short proof of concept that took about 10 minutes to play through. I learned during the development of this game to work with Unity but also to come up with the foundation of the game in a multidisciplinary group. I worked with people from Software Science and Psychology & Technology. Everyone had their own ideas and visions for the game. I was able to introduce ideation techniques I learned in earlier courses to get everyone on the same page – something I am to keep doing in the future.

During the second course, we worked on a specific assignment: design a game to give aspiring students get an understanding of university life. In a different team, we decided to create a game in which the player steps in the shoes of an ID student. They had to plan their own time and choose what aspects of the iterative design cycle they wanted to focus on. They could for instance decide to spend more time in the workshop versus the library. They also had group meeting they needed to attend to keep their group mates happy. As the only Industrial Design student, I did a lot of conceptual work. I also defined the rules of the game and which activities the player can follow. I also wrote dialogue, the over-arching story, the tutorials, the sound design, and much more.

During the third course, we aimed to implement the playfulness of games into everyday life. With a new group, I designed a dish rack which plays music and lights up. We gave it the tacky name: DishcoRack. The project was never too serious and we aimed to make something that can make users laugh. A disco-dish-rack is ridiculous, which made the project that much more fun.

Overall, these courses changed my view on the designer I want to be. My curiosity in game design turned into passion. It changed how I look and interact with modern games. It also taught me that I should probably pursue this interest into a career path. After making my own game I see the intentions, perfections, and imperfections of other games and their designers. I believe that I have a unique view on games that I would love to expand on.

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