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Kursusbeskrivelse
Kursusnavn (dansk):Experimental Interaction 
Kursusnavn (engelsk):Experimental Interaction 
Semester:Efterår 2015 
Udbydes under:cand.it., spil (games) 
Omfang i ECTS:7,50 
Kursussprog:Engelsk 
Kursushjemmeside:https://learnit.itu.dk 
Min. antal deltagere:12 
Forventet antal deltagere:20 
Maks. antal deltagere:40 
Formelle forudsætninger:Participants need to fulfill the admission requirements of the IT University.
Participants should be open and interested to learn about and experiment with a (new, specific) design method.
For the implementation part, some programming experience, e.g. in a C-based language (e.g., C, C++, C#, Java or Processing) is helpful but no condition for participation.
Experience in evaluating interactive media is useful, too. 
Læringsmål:Successful participants are able to

  • Work as part of a team

  • Identify, describe, apply, communicate and discuss conceptual models of
    interactive design

  • Generate original concepts, and produce high quality previsualization, proof of
    concept and prototyping materials for concept development and pitching

  • Design and develop unique interactive projects from start to finish

  • Create and integrate media elements, such as images, text, sound, video

  • Aquire expertise in playtesting

 
Fagligt indhold:Please note, that due to technical challenges, changes may occur before the start of the semester (week 35) – this applies to all sections of the course description.

Experimental Interaction 2015 Autumn Blank Spots in Game Design
The course aims to uncover blank spots in digital game design; more specifically, unused or underused game mechanics in action games. The method employed is Pattern Design as originally popularized by Alexander (1979) for architecture.
The idea is to conduct a comparative analysis between design languages for several game genres to reveal game mechanics missing from one of the genres, implement an experimental prototype and empirically evaluate it. For instance, participants analyse a jump n' run game, find the patterns of the TRAP and the SHOP which are missing from puzzle games, transfer them, and evaluate the results.
There is a good chance that the course will yield (some of) the expected results. But it is an explorative investigation, of which the specific outcome is open and unknown.
Pattern design assumes all man-made artifacts such as systems, media, models, objects, processes and activities of any complexity are structured by patterns. The patterns can be used for analysis and for generation of these artifacts. The idea of using patterns in this way arguably originated in architecture, but it appears to gain substantial influence in other areas in the last decade, e.g. in software design. Design patterns is a niche theory in mainstream game design but it appears to gain substantial influence in specific areas such as software design and Procedural Content Generation. Apparently, this led to a renewed interest in pattern design, but also to an inflationary use of the notion of 'patterns'. The course uses Alexander's notion of design patterns who has a very clear idea about what a pattern is, and how patterns are connected by and formed into a language.
The concept of Alexandrian design patterns has been applied to a range of different domains. They also have already been applied to interaction and game design (e.g. Simpson 1998; Church 1999; Borchers 2001; Kreimeier 2002; Björk, Lundgren, Holopainen 2003; Kreimeier 2003; Lemay 2007). But I recommend not to use (part of) an existing language for computer game design (such as Björk, Holopainen 2005) but to attempt to cover the whole process of identifying patterns, formulating a language and using it.
For practical reasons, I recommend to focus on classic action games (e.g. jump n' run/platform (Mario, Great Giana Sisters), 2D shooter (Xenon 2), maze (Gauntlet), race (Super Cars), karate (IK+), sniper (Cabal)).
The prototypical implementation can use any programming or scripting language. 
Læringsaktiviteter:14 ugers undervisning bestående af forelæsninger og øvelser

Participants discuss theory, identify, describe and catalogue a set of patterns and use them to design games. Specifically, participants work individually and collectively on the following tasks:


  • Analyse several game genres to find interaction patterns;

  • Make complete, generative pattern design languages for the genres;

  • Compare the languages for the different game genres and transfer patterns between them to formulate a new language for one of the genres;

  • Make an experimental implementation of a game employing the novel design language; and

  • Evaluate the player experience of the game with particular regard to the new game mechanics.


The course is explorative; its motivation, method and direction are known, while its material outcome and specific route is open. It is likely that during the process the tasks are reformulated and more specifically defined, and that other interesting or necessary activities emerge. It is part of the learning experience for participants to discuss and decide collectively what to do and how to advance in the most promising way and to validate progess. 
Obligatoriske aktivititer:Assessment is based on participants' achievements in the learning activities. Definitive and specific information on grading is made available in printed form and online in the first week of teaching. 
Eksamensform og -beskrivelse:C: Skriftlige arbejder uden mundtlig eksamen., (7-scale, external exam)

The material results of the course include: An analysis of a game genre and formulation of interaction patterns; creation of a pattern design language; generation of a new design language based on the comparison of languages for different game genres with each other and the transfer of patterns between them; implementation of an experimental game employing the novel design language; and the evaluation of the player experience of the game.
Beyond these results, and arguably more importantly, participants


  • Further their expertise in game design

  • Gain hands-on experience and skills using a particular design technique (design patterns)

  • Learn to generalize from a specific design methodology; this particular methodology might be useful in itself, but it also demonstrates what a design methodology is, how it works, how it is used, and the connections and breaks between concept and practice

 
Litteratur udover forskningsartikler:
 
Undervisere
Følgende personer underviser på kurset:
NavnStillingUndervisertypeIndsats (%)
Daniel Cermak Adjunkt(ITU) Kursusansvarlig 100
Kristin Gudmundsdottir Ekstern lektor(ITU) Underviser 0