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AFTERLAND: Game Of The Week 2011, Episode 4

The 2011 Game of the Week Podcast 4: AFTERLAND featuring GAMBIT Lead Game Designer Matthew Weise and Visiting Scholar Konstantin Mitgutsch

What is the Game of the Week? This is the Game of the Week.

Afterland was developed as a tool to study recursive learning processes in videogame players. It is meant to explore how players' expectations can be challenged through subverting common design patterns (in this case, those of the 2D platformer) in a motivating way.

The experience of learning is grounded in a player's expectations and anticipations, which makes recognizing and identifying patterns and mechanics a key player activity. Players learn to play games through developing skills, strategies, and models that help them understand patterns, master challenges, and reach given goals. Playful learning, therefore, is a process of experiencing, recognizing, and reflecting on patterns, and it involves exploring the scope of one's actions in game space.

In Afterland various paradigm shifts subvert common gameplay patterns in order to encourage players to modify their anticipations. In this way, the game is meant to provoke a corresponding paradigm shift in the player, forcing him or her to reassess certain expectations and adopt new mental models, strategies, and goals than those commonly found in games of its genre. Data can then be collected on how players respond to this paradigm shift, how it affected their own conscious experience of learning, etc.


Beginning January 31st, 2011...On the Monday of each week, a new video exploring the origins and processes of developing each project will be posted. GAMBIT Audio Director Abe Stein will post a blog each following day of the week, featuring concept art, design documents, and analysis of the highlighted game will be offered for your viewing pleasure! Video Produced by Generoso Fierro, Edited by Garrett Beazley, Intro Music by Abe Stein, Background music by Sher Iqbal

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Singapore-MIT GAMBIT Game Lab

Singapore-MIT GAMBIT Game Lab

Category: Education | Updated over 3 years ago

February 04, 2011 21:57
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