project15-final project

Week 16 Milestone: Final Project


To better inform the design of your games, it is useful to play completed games and critically analyze their components. Select a game that interests you from the Games For Change web site ( Play the game to completion or, if there is no ending, until you have mastered the system. Use the worksheet below to guide your critical analysis, but feel free to add to this template as needed. Not all areas will apply to every game, and the questions listed below are only meant as a guide. Consult your text for terms you don’t understand. Publish your analysis in expository form to your ePortfolio as a critical game review. Submit a copy of your worksheet to the appropriate link in Blackboard.



  Needs Improvement Satisfactory Excellent Points Comments
Responded to all the relevant categories in the worksheet in a substantive manner Needed to address several categories in the Worksheet. Addressed most of the relevant categories, but did not demonstrate mastery of the concepts. Addressed all of the relevant categories in the worksheet, and demonstrated mastery of key concepts as they relate to the game. 30/30  
Published critical review to the ePortfolio Did not publish a critical review for the public. Published a review in expository form, but the article was not accessible by novices and experts alike. Translated all the content from the worksheet into expository form. Wrote an accessible article that could be appreciated by novices and experts. 10/10  
APA formatting, writing style, grammar, spelling, and punctuation Article not formatted in APA style. Many issues with grammar, spelling, and punctuation. Does not include citations and references when appropriate. Article formatted in APA style, but there are errors. Some errors in grammar, spelling, and punctuation. Inaccurate citations and references. Article formatted in APA style. No errors in grammar, spelling, and punctuation. Includes appropriate citations and references when needed. 10/10  
TOTAL       50/50  



Game title and authors/company Health Genie by Cristina Martinez
URL where the game can be found  
Learning objective – What is the game trying to teach? What learning experience is the game attempting to create for the player? It is trying to teach people about the gene mutation MTHFR and for those who may have it already, how to maintain a healthy diet.
Primary game mechanic – What is the dominant form of interaction the player has with the game? How does this support or obscure the learning objective? It is a board game, players have to pick the healthiest foods from a pack of cards before the timer and whoever has the most wins, the game does enforce the learning objective because you learn which foods are gluten free. It begins to be easy to remember because you look at the name, picture, and player may say the food out loud and that becomes a better chance of it staying in the players mind.
Physiological/cognitive/social/behavior processes – Which of these systems is most affected by the game design? How does the design attempt to affect this system? All are used; you need to think about what foods are healthy for the child. When the child is ill, that may affect the player’s behavior and make them feel frustrated. I plan to affect the system by having a lot of foods surrounding the baby and the player has to quickly choose which foods are good. If they choose wrong, the baby’s health decreases. There will be a pop up doctor that will show up giving tips and suggestions.


Number of players – How many players are engaged in the game? How do players interact with each other and the game (e.g., competitive or coorperative)? 2 ore more players can play this game or as many the cards can allow
Game objective – What is the primary objective of the game? Does the game objective reinforce the learning objective? The player needs to keep the baby’s health up by feeding the baby healthy food.
Rules and procedures – What are the rules of the game? How do these complement or conflict with the game and learning objectives? The rules are in the amount of time given; feed the baby the correct foods. You cannot trade cards unless you get a special blue card. You may get a free pass if you get that in your stack of food cards. This may conflict because the player can simply throw down any card and not really learn the whole point of the game. There are specialty cards. Cards that can add extra time, give free passes for more points, or trade cards with a player. There is a card that guides the player on what to do each level. The players have to look at it before they begin the level so that they know which food stack to use.


Resources – What items are accrued during the game? What resources are spent? What governs the exchange of resources? There are specialty cards. Cards that can add extra time, give free passes for more points, or trade cards with a player. Depending on the level and what foods are used determines the factor of the cards.


Conflict – How is conflict between players or game elements introduced, maintained, and resolved? There is a card that guides the player on what to do each level. The players have to look at it before they begin the level so that they know which food stack to use.


Boundaries – How does the game prevent players from behaving in a certain way? How might this limitation be fun? How might it contribute to the objectives? You can only use what is given to win the game. You must pick the right card or else you lose. You have to think quickly and another person is challenging you.
Outcome – How does the game end? Does the outcome conflict with the objectives? The game ends with one of the player’s winning by having the most correct foods.


Character – Who is the main character? What is their motivation? What is the relationship between the character/avatar and the player? The main character is the baby. Everything is centered on it; the health of the baby is how you win the game so that is the motivation. The player needs to figure the baby out to win so they have to work together in a sense.
Challenge – What challenges are presented to the player/character? What skills must the character/player learn or master? The challenge is to beat the next person at passing the correct foods into the baby’s mouth. They must master moving fast as possible and understanding what food is healthiest.
World building – In what fictional world does the game take place? It takes place in this time in a regular family home kitchen.
Premise – What is the general premise of the story? The background story is about a child being diagnosed with the gene mutation MTHFR and the parents need to change the babies diet. This game would be more appealing to killers and achievers.


Story – Does the story use a linear, branching, or emergent narrative? How do player interactions relate to the narrative? Linear
Play – In what way is the game playful? Of the many types of play, which is most prevalent? Which of the players in Bartle’s Taxonomy is most likely to enjoy this game? Killers and achievers because they are the most competitive and would want to beat the game.
Dramatic arc – How are tension and resolution controlled in the story? How does the story create conflict in the game? Depending on what the child is fed, controls what consequences are to follow
Objects – What objects are used to build game systems (e.g., houses in Monopoly)? Different types of food
Properties – What object properties are required for the game systems (e.g., house values)? Gluten free food
Behaviors – What object behaviors are required for the game system (e.g., buying)? Eating healthy fresh foods
Relationships – What are the basic relationships between system elements? What controls the dynamics of the system? Everything is connected, the baby relies of the player (aka the parent) and depending on what the parent chooses to feed the child will affect the baby’s overall health.
Economies – Does the game system exist as an economy (e.g., Monopoly or SimCity)? If so, how does the economy change over time? N/A
Emergent systems – What new systems emerge from game play? Are there procedurally generated systems? As the game progresses new factors may pop up. For example, alcohol and cigarettes and be mixed in the deck.
Interacting with systems – What information about the system is exposed to the player and what is hidden? How do players interact with the system, control the system, and received feedback from the system? Everything for the most part is exposed. Players just need to follow the cards and depending on what specialty cards are in their deck they can have more control than their opponent.
Functionality – Is the game fully functional?  


Completeness – Is the game complete? Is there a voice not being represented? The game is complete. You see the react ion of the player and the baby through out the game. Such as the health of the baby can decrease or the player is becoming more stressed at figuring out what to feed the baby.


Balance – Is the game balanced? Is there a dominant strategy? Is the game symmetrical? If not, is the imbalance intentionally part of the design? Yes it is there are rules set and game pieces
Fun – Is the game engaging? How do elements that support engagement promote or obscure learning? Yes you have to actively participate and by how fast paced and competitive it is, it helps increase learning.
Player choice – What choices are meaningful in the game? How do these relate to the objective? It is important to choose the right foods.
Fun killers – Are there parts of the game that are broken? What parts feel like micromanaging? What parts of the game are stagnant or boring? Are there insurmountable obstacles, arbitrary windfalls/calamities, or inconsequential choices? The only fun killer is that it is very easy to play the game. There are not that many situations or obstacles to make the player think of other ways to win the game.


Accessibility – How easy is it to play the game? How long does it take to learn the game? How do players learn how to play? The only fun killer is that it is very easy to play the game. There are not that many situations or obstacles to make the player think of other ways to win the game.



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About Robert O. Duncan

I'm an Assistant Professor of Behavioral Sciences at City University of New York, with joint appointments in Neuroscience and Cognitive Neuroscience. I also have an appointment as a Visiting Scholar at New York University. My research interests include cognitive neuroscience, functional magnetic resonance imaging, glaucoma, neurodegenerative disorders, attention, learning, memory, educational technology, pedagogy, and developing games for education.

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