Sploder Game Types

3D Mission

I just attempted to play the 3D Mission games in Sploder.  My favorite out of the three was “Download Computer Core”, but I didn’t get very far in any of the games I tried.   I am probably the world’s worst when it comes to playing video games so as you can imagine, my missions failed on the first level.  I typically like games where I am working to complete a level and move onto the next one, but I could not get past level one in any of the games.  I like being able to search for different items throughout the levels and to increase my power, but I was getting angry because I would have to shoot a million times to kill one of the monsters in practically every game I played.  I don’t think creating this type of game would be right for me because it would probably be too easy and not worthwhile for the person playing it.

Retro Arcade

Retro arcade games might be the way to go for me and game creation.  I love everything about them, the music, the graphics, leveling-up.  I think I also love these games because they are kind of mind numbingly entertaining.  They don’t require a whole lot of thought except for maybe how to make it to the end of the level, yet they are entertaining enough to keep on playing.  They are a great way to take your mind off day-to-day stresses.  I also like that I don’t have to worry too much about which keys to press on my keyboard; there are only a few keys needed to run, jump, shoot, etc.  It doesn’t require much to play this type of game which is great for video game challenged people like me.

2D Top Down Shooter

Playing 2D Top Down Shooter Games remind me of some of the arcade games I played when I was a child.  In the first game I tried, I played as a robot and in the second game, I played as a spaceship.  Once I figured out which button to press, they were both fun to play.  I did not make it very far as the robot, though, because there were too many enemies shooting at me and eventually I blew up.  One thing I did not like in both games was using the mouse to move around.  If I just moved the mouse a little bit, my ship or robot would spin all over the place which made it hard to hit my enemy targets.  If I were to create this type of game, I would  need to be sure to not make it too easy or too hard.  I found it almost impossible to complete the robot game, but the spaceship game was too easy.  With either extreme, I could see someone getting bored easily and giving up on the game.

Physics Game Creator

The Physics Game Creator was interesting and might be something I incorporate into my own game creation.  In the game I played, I enjoyed the music that went along with it.  I also liked that when I did die on a level, I was able to try again beginning on the same level where I died.  I didn’t have to start all over again. I did not like that I only had one life on each level.  At least two would have been good.  I also didn’t like the 20 second time limit.  I felt like it was too short to really think about my strategy for conquering the level.

Platformer

I played the Platformer game “Pirate.”  This seems like the type of game that I would like, but I had so many dislikes while I was playing the game that they overshadowed any type of enjoyment.  One thing I did like were the screen backgrounds.  The game was less plain looking than some of the others I have played.  There were no real directions on how to play the game except to find the escape pod.  It was hard for me to figure out where I was on the screen even when trying to use the radar.  One misstep to the left at the beginning of the level and I ended up in a section that I could not escape.  Sometimes I couldn’t jump high enough to get to where I needed to go and I kept pressing “C” for the jet pack and that never worked.  I also found a whole section of power-ups and coins but I could never figure out how to reach them.  One thing I learned from playing this game is that if you make it too challenging or if features don’t work, the player gets frustrated and the game no longer is fun to play.

Conclusions

Based on playing all these types of games, I have come up with a list of good and bad characteristics for a game.  These characteristics are specific to me and may be different for another individual, but I think many people can relate to what I have listed.

Good game characteristics include:

  1. Something not too easy, but not so challenging that the player does not encounter any success.
  2. The ability to increase in power and levels.
  3. Music that is catchy or adds to the level of excitement in the game.
  4. Good graphics
  5. Thorough directions
  6. Not having to deal with too many controls like which keys to press and how to maneuver the mouse.
  7. Not having to start the game all over when the character dies and having more than one life.
  8. Having a reasonable time limit to complete a level.

Bad game characteristics include:

  1. A game that is so difficult that the player experiences too much frustration and gives up.
  2. Having too many buttons or controls to remember to press while playing.
  3. Having too many enemies on one level.
  4. A game that is too easy and does not pose any challenge.
  5.  Not having enough lives or time to complete a level.
  6. Obscure or lack of direction on how to play the game.
  7. When features on the game do not work.
  8. No continuity of where to go on the board to complete the level.

 

Play This, Learn That

In the first chapter of the eBook, Play This, Learn That by Chris Haskell, Ed.D we are introduced to the idea of using commercial games in an educational setting.  Game based learning engages learners in some type of activity they find fun in order to reach a desired learning outcome.  In an effective game based environment, the learner works toward a goal, makes choices along the way, and experiences consequences for their choices and  actions in a risk-free environment while actively learning and practicing the right way to do things.  The participant is highly motivated to think critically and perform actions in an environment that can eventually be applied to real life situations.  Game based learning should be an essential component in today’s education system because it transitions learning from being a boring, passive activity to something engaging and fun. Continue reading

Piloting Shuttles on the Prometheus

As a member of the flight crew on the Prometheus in EDTECH 532, Educational Games and Simulations, I took some time to complete a quest practicing piloting Type 6 Shuttles.  I feel like I have finally become proficient at flying this type of ship.  I practiced flying in hover mode and flight mode.  I found that it was easier to maneuver the ship in hover mode.  I encountered some issues while in flight mode.  I could not figure out how to get my ship to move left of right and I could not get the nose of the ship to point in the direction of my mouse pointer even when I followed the directions in the manual.  That is something that I will still need to work on.  Finally, I practiced using the weapons on the ship.  Since I am still new to piloting the ships and get confused easily, I pretty much stay close to the Prometheus while I practice.  It is very easy to get lost in space!  Here is a picture of me in flight outside the Prometheus.

Type 6 Shuttle_001