Creating Meaningful Games through Values-Driven Design Principles

Jerrett Adam Howell Peter Dansey Neil
2020 DiGRA ’20 – Proceedings of the 2020 DiGRA International Conference: Play Everywhere

The interactivity present in games makes them useful vehicles for the exploration of various concepts outside of “finding the fun”. Empathy games – games that are developed to educate and encourage empathetic responses from players about a scenario – are one such example. However, the notion of empathy game design overlaps with other tangential design theories like emotional game design, radical game design, and critical game design. These theories often overlap but are difficult to discover because of their different naming conventions. To assist designers, this paper discusses design principles from these and other similar game design frameworks. Using these, it presents a consolidated set of design principles and considerations that can be applied to game projects. These principles are presented to inspire future design work to explore lesser-known experiences, in the hopes of being more inclusive of, and more meaningful to, a diverse player base.


Contextually-Ambiguous Pervasive Games: An Exploratory Study

Dansey Neil Stevens Brett Eglin Roger
2009 DiGRA '09 - Proceedings of the 2009 DiGRA International Conference: Breaking New Ground: Innovation in Games, Play, Practice and Theory

In this paper a player-centric view is taken to illustrate game rules in terms of definition and validation. Games with externally-defined but internally-validated rules are given the term contextually-ambiguous games, and it is suggested that a contemporary definition of pervasiveness in games should accommodate contextual ambiguity. Several pervasive games have displayed elements of this ambiguity, but examples of games which feature this as a core gameplay mechanism are rare. Therefore, four such games are implemented in a case study in order to explore the potential of contextually-ambiguous games. Results are tentative, but offer some insight into potentially popular features and target audiences of such games.