Playability Design Pattern in Educational Video Game

Ibrahim, Amer; Vela, Francisco Gutiérrez; Sánchez, José Luís González; Zea, Natalia Padilla
January 2011
Proceedings of the European Conference on Games Based Learning;2011, p282
Conference Proceeding
Educational Video Game (EVG) as a combination of two components from different nature (learn and play) is hard to design and implement, and sometimes is more a matter of intuition, due to the multidisciplinary of these fields (Fun and Education). Unfortunately, there is an important issue that no existing educational video game methodology addresses and that is: how to make good, effective designs from playability and player experience (PX) perspectives, which are very interested in EVG. This is the barrier that faces successful experienced games designers. To overcome this problem we propose the use of design patterns as an effective model to support design and analysis of EVG, and to improve the experience of video games and the efficiency in the learning process. Design patterns offer a way forward, and forms a good tool for recording and reutilizing design experience, where it provides explanation and evaluation of an important and a recurrent design. Using design patterns in EVG gives us the ability to describe the interaction between the EVG components and 'use' these components by players to affect the Playability of the EVGs. In this work we present how design patterns support the PX based on the playability characteristics, and provide the necessary help to the video game designers to concentrate their game ideas. Our proposal derives what is suitable and useful for EVG design patterns by studying the related works from the different video game genres, interactive system, hypermedia systems and multimedia systems. The suggested patterns aim to facilitate the EVG development, captivate the essential information and the necessary requirements to understand the discussed problem and the proposed solution and present the interrelationships between EVG components and playability attributes. We have also introduced a new taxonomy for grouping the proposed patterns in a flexible interactive structure related to EVG elements and the common design problems.


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