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Reality Is Broken

Reality Is Broken Author Jane McGonigal
ISBN-10 1101475498
Release 2011-01-20
Pages 416
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A visionary game designer reveals how we can harness the power of games to boost global happiness. With 174 million gamers in the United States alone, we now live in a world where every generation will be a gamer generation. But why, Jane McGonigal asks, should games be used for escapist entertainment alone? In this groundbreaking book, she shows how we can leverage the power of games to fix what is wrong with the real world-from social problems like depression and obesity to global issues like poverty and climate change-and introduces us to cutting-edge games that are already changing the business, education, and nonprofit worlds. Written for gamers and non-gamers alike, Reality Is Broken shows that the future will belong to those who can understand, design, and play games. From the Trade Paperback edition.



Reality is Broken

Reality is Broken Author Jane McGonigal
ISBN-10 9781409028987
Release 2011-02-10
Pages 416
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We are living in a world full of games. More than 31 million people in the UK are gamers. The average young person will spend 10,000 hours gaming by the age of twenty-one. The future belongs to those who play games. In this ground-breaking book, visionary game designer Jane McGonigaI challenges conventional thinking and shows that games - far from being simply escapist entertainment - have the potential not only to radically improve our own lives but to change the world.



Reality is Broken

Reality is Broken Author Jane McGonigal
ISBN-10 1594202850
Release 2011
Pages 388
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A visionary game designer explains how video games are increasingly fulfilling genuine human needs, revealing how to use the lessons of game design to address pressing real-world issues, from mental illness to social disparities.



Exodus to the Virtual World

Exodus to the Virtual World Author Edward Castronova
ISBN-10 9780230607859
Release 2008-11-11
Pages 256
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Surveys the growing popularity of virtual reality worlds as represented by such online games as World of Warcraft and Second Life, explaining how virtual arenas have become representative of new social, political, and economic orders that have captured the attention of millions of everyday people. 20,000 first printing.



SuperBetter

SuperBetter Author Jane McGonigal
ISBN-10 9780698185500
Release 2015-09-15
Pages 480
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An innovative guide to living gamefully, based on the program that has already helped nearly half a million people achieve remarkable personal growth In 2009, internationally renowned game designer Jane McGonigal suffered a severe concussion. Unable to think clearly or work or even get out of bed, she became anxious and depressed, even suicidal. But rather than let herself sink further, she decided to get better by doing what she does best: she turned her recovery process into a resilience-building game. What started as a simple motivational exercise quickly became a set of rules for “post-traumatic growth” that she shared on her blog. These rules led to a digital game and a major research study with the National Institutes of Health. Today nearly half a million people have played SuperBetter to get stronger, happier, and healthier. But the life-changing ideas behind SuperBetter are much bigger than just one game. In this book, McGonigal reveals a decade’s worth of scientific research into the ways all games—including videogames, sports, and puzzles—change how we respond to stress, challenge, and pain. She explains how we can cultivate new powers of recovery and resilience in everyday life simply by adopting a more “gameful” mind-set. Being gameful means bringing the same psychological strengths we naturally display when we play games—such as optimism, creativity, courage, and determination—to real-world goals. Drawing on hundreds of studies, McGonigal shows that getting superbetter is as simple as tapping into the three core psychological strengths that games help you build: • Your ability to control your attention, and therefore your thoughts and feelings • Your power to turn anyone into a potential ally, and to strengthen your existing relationships • Your natural capacity to motivate yourself and super-charge your heroic qualities, like willpower, compassion, and determination SuperBetter contains nearly 100 playful challenges anyone can undertake in order to build these gameful strengths. It includes stories and data from people who have used the SuperBetter method to get stronger in the face of illness, injury, and other major setbacks, as well as to achieve goals like losing weight, running a marathon, and finding a new job. As inspiring as it is down to earth, and grounded in rigorous research, SuperBetter is a proven game plan for a better life. You’ll never say that something is “just a game” again. From the Hardcover edition.



Power Play

Power Play Author Asi Burak
ISBN-10 9781250089342
Release 2017-01-31
Pages 288
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The phenomenal growth of gaming has inspired plenty of hand-wringing since its inception--from the press, politicians, parents, and everyone else concerned with its effect on our brains, bodies, and hearts. But what if games could be good, not only for individuals but for the world? In Power Play, Asi Burak and Laura Parker explore how video games are now pioneering innovative social change around the world. As the former executive director and now chairman of Games for Change, Asi Burak has spent the last ten years supporting and promoting the use of video games for social good, in collaboration with leading organizations like the White House, NASA, World Bank, and The United Nations. The games for change movement has introduced millions of players to meaningful experiences around everything from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to the US Constitution. Power Play looks to the future of games as a global movement. Asi Burak and Laura Parker profile the luminaries behind some of the movement's most iconic games, including former Supreme Court judge Sandra Day O’Connor and Pulitzer-Prize winning authors Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. They also explore the promise of virtual reality to address social and political issues with unprecedented immersion, and see what the next generation of game makers have in store for the future.



Extra Lives

Extra Lives Author Tom Bissell
ISBN-10 9780307379283
Release 2010-06-08
Pages 208
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Tom Bissell is a prizewinning writer who published three widely acclaimed books before the age of thirty-four. He is also an obsessive gamer who has spent untold hours in front of his various video game consoles, playing titles such as Far Cry 2, Left 4 Dead, BioShock, and Oblivion for, literally, days. If you are reading this flap copy, the same thing can probably be said of you, or of someone you know. Until recently, Bissell was somewhat reluctant to admit to his passion for games. In this, he is not alone. Millions of adults spend hours every week playing video games, and the industry itself now reliably outearns Hollywood. But the wider culture seems to regard video games as, at best, well designed if mindless entertainment. Extra Lives is an impassioned defense of this assailed and misunderstood art form. Bissell argues that we are in a golden age of gaming—but he also believes games could be even better. He offers a fascinating and often hilarious critique of the ways video games dazzle and, just as often, frustrate. Along the way, we get firsthand portraits of some of the best minds (Jonathan Blow, Clint Hocking, Cliff Bleszinski, Peter Molyneux) at work in video game design today, as well as a shattering and deeply moving final chapter that describes, in searing detail, Bissell’s descent into the world of Grand Theft Auto IV, a game whose themes mirror his own increasingly self-destructive compulsions. Blending memoir, criticism, and first-rate reportage, Extra Lives is like no other book on the subject ever published. Whether you love video games, loathe video games, or are merely curious about why they are becoming the dominant popular art form of our time, Extra Lives is required reading. From the Hardcover edition.



Synthetic Worlds

Synthetic Worlds Author Edward Castronova
ISBN-10 9780226096315
Release 2008-09-15
Pages 344
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From EverQuest to World of Warcraft, online games have evolved from the exclusive domain of computer geeks into an extraordinarily lucrative staple of the entertainment industry. People of all ages and from all walks of life now spend thousands of hours—and dollars—partaking in this popular new brand of escapism. But the line between fantasy and reality is starting to blur. Players have created virtual societies with governments and economies of their own whose currencies now trade against the dollar on eBay at rates higher than the yen. And the players who inhabit these synthetic worlds are starting to spend more time online than at their day jobs. In Synthetic Worlds, Edward Castronova offers the first comprehensive look at the online game industry, exploring its implications for business and culture alike. He starts with the players, giving us a revealing look into the everyday lives of the gamers—outlining what they do in their synthetic worlds and why. He then describes the economies inside these worlds to show how they might dramatically affect real world financial systems, from potential disruptions of markets to new business horizons. Ultimately, he explores the long-term social consequences of online games: If players can inhabit worlds that are more alluring and gratifying than reality, then how can the real world ever compete? Will a day ever come when we spend more time in these synthetic worlds than in our own? Or even more startling, will a day ever come when such questions no longer sound alarmist but instead seem obsolete? With more than ten million active players worldwide—and with Microsoft and Sony pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into video game development—online games have become too big to ignore. Synthetic Worlds spearheads our efforts to come to terms with this virtual reality and its concrete effects. “Illuminating. . . . Castronova’s analysis of the economics of fun is intriguing. Virtual-world economies are designed to make the resulting game interesting and enjoyable for their inhabitants. Many games follow a rags-to-riches storyline, for example. But how can all the players end up in the top 10%? Simple: the upwardly mobile human players need only be a subset of the world's population. An underclass of computer-controlled 'bot' citizens, meanwhile, stays poor forever. Mr. Castronova explains all this with clarity, wit, and a merciful lack of academic jargon.”—The Economist “Synthetic Worlds is a surprisingly profound book about the social, political, and economic issues arising from the emergence of vast multiplayer games on the Internet. What Castronova has realized is that these games, where players contribute considerable labor in exchange for things they value, are not merely like real economies, they are real economies, displaying inflation, fraud, Chinese sweatshops, and some surprising in-game innovations.”—Tim Harford, Chronicle of Higher Education



Uncertainty in Games

Uncertainty in Games Author Greg Costikyan
ISBN-10 9780262018968
Release 2013
Pages 141
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In life, uncertainty surrounds us. Things that we thought were good for us turn out to be bad for us (and vice versa); people we thought we knew well behave in mysterious ways; the stock market takes a nosedive. Thanks to an inexplicable optimism, most of the time we are fairly cheerful about it all. But we do devote much effort to managing and ameliorating uncertainty. Is it any wonder, then, asks Greg Costikyan, that we have taken this aspect of our lives and transformed it culturally, making a series of elaborate constructs that subject us to uncertainty but in a fictive and nonthreatening way? That is: we create games. In this concise and entertaining book, Costikyan, an award-winning game designer, argues that games require uncertainty to hold our interest, and that the struggle to master uncertainty is central to their appeal. Game designers, he suggests, can harness the idea of uncertainty to guide their work. Costikyan explores the many sources of uncertainty in many sorts of games -- from Super Mario Bros. to Rock/Paper/Scissors, from Monopoly to CityVille, from FPS Deathmatch play to Chess. He describes types of uncertainty, including performative uncertainty, analytic complexity, and narrative anticipation. And he suggest ways that game designers who want to craft novel game experiences can use an understanding of game uncertainty in its many forms to improve their designs.



The Game Believes in You

The Game Believes in You Author Greg Toppo
ISBN-10 9781466879454
Release 2015-04-21
Pages 256
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What if schools, from the wealthiest suburban nursery school to the grittiest urban high school, thrummed with the sounds of deep immersion? More and more people believe that can happen - with the aid of video games. Greg Toppo's The Game Believes in You presents the story of a small group of visionaries who, for the past 40 years, have been pushing to get game controllers into the hands of learners. Among the game revolutionaries you'll meet in this book: *A game designer at the University of Southern California leading a team to design a video-game version of Thoreau's Walden Pond. *A young neuroscientist and game designer whose research on "Math Without Words" is revolutionizing how the subject is taught, especially to students with limited English abilities. *A Virginia Tech music instructor who is leading a group of high school-aged boys through the creation of an original opera staged totally in the online game Minecraft. Experts argue that games do truly "believe in you." They focus, inspire and reassure people in ways that many teachers can't. Games give people a chance to learn at their own pace, take risks, cultivate deeper understanding, fail and want to try again—right away—and ultimately, succeed in ways that too often elude them in school. This book is sure to excite and inspire educators and parents, as well as provoke some passionate debate.



Gamify

Gamify Author Biran Burke
ISBN-10 9781351861779
Release 2016-10-14
Pages 192
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Organizations are facing an engagement crisis. Regardless if they are customers, employees, patients, students, citizens, stakeholders, organizations struggle to meaningfully engage their key constituent groups who have a precious and limited resource: their time. Not surprisingly, these stakeholders have developed deflector shields to protect themselves. Only a privileged few organizations are allowed to penetrate the shield, and even less will meaningfully engage. To penetrate the shield, and engage the audience, organizations need an edge. Gamification has emerged as a way to gain that edge and organizations are beginning to see it as a key tool in their digital engagement strategy. While gamification has tremendous potential to break through, most companies will get it wrong. Gartner predicts that by 2014, 80% of current gamified applications will fail to meet business objectives primarily due to poor design. As a trend, gamification is at the peak of the hype cycle; it has been oversold and it is broadly misunderstood. We are heading for the inevitable fall. Too many organizations have been led to believe that gamification is a magic elixir for indoctrinating the masses and manipulating them to do their bidding. These organizations are mistaking people for puppets, and these transparently cynical efforts are doomed to fail. This book goes beyond the hype and focuses on the 20% that are getting it right. We have spoken to hundreds of leaders in organizations around the world about their gamification strategies and we have seen some spectacular successes. The book examines some of these successes and identifies the common characteristics of these initiatives to define the solution space for success. It is a guide written for leaders of gamification initiatives to help them avoid the pitfalls and employ the best practices, to ensure they join the 20% that gets it right. Gamify shows gamification in action: as a powerful approach to engaging and motivating people to achieving their goals, while at the same time achieving organizational objectives. It can be used to motivate people to change behaviors, develop skills, and drive innovation. The sweet spot for gamification objectives is the space where the business objectives and player objectives are aligned. Like two sides of the same coin, player and business goals may outwardly appear different, but they are often the same thing, expressed different ways. The key to gamification success is to engage people on an emotional level and motivating them to achieve their goals.



How Games Move Us

How Games Move Us Author Katherine Isbister
ISBN-10 9780262333245
Release 2016-03-04
Pages 192
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This is a renaissance moment for video games -- in the variety of genres they represent, and the range of emotional territory they cover. But how do games create emotion? In How Games Move Us, Katherine Isbister takes the reader on a timely and novel exploration of the design techniques that evoke strong emotions for players. She counters arguments that games are creating a generation of isolated, emotionally numb, antisocial loners. Games, Isbister shows us, can actually play a powerful role in creating empathy and other strong, positive emotional experiences; they reveal these qualities over time, through the act of playing. She offers a nuanced, systematic examination of exactly how games can influence emotion and social connection, with examples -- drawn from popular, indie, and art games -- that unpack the gamer's experience.Isbister describes choice and flow, two qualities that distinguish games from other media, and explains how game developers build upon these qualities using avatars, non-player characters, and character customization, in both solo and social play. She shows how designers use physical movement to enhance players' emotional experience, and examines long-distance networked play. She illustrates the use of these design methods with examples that range from Sony's Little Big Planet to the much-praised indie game Journey to art games like Brenda Romero's Train. Isbister's analysis shows us a new way to think about games, helping us appreciate them as an innovative and powerful medium for doing what film, literature, and other creative media do: helping us to understand ourselves and what it means to be human.



Smarter Than You Think

Smarter Than You Think Author Clive Thompson
ISBN-10 9781101638712
Release 2013-09-12
Pages 352
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A revelatory and timely look at how technology boosts our cognitive abilities—making us smarter, more productive, and more creative than ever It’s undeniable—technology is changing the way we think. But is it for the better? Amid a chorus of doomsayers, Clive Thompson delivers a resounding “yes.” In Smarter Than You Think, Thompson shows that every technological innovation—from the written word to the printing press to the telegraph—has provoked the very same anxieties that plague us today. We panic that life will never be the same, that our attentions are eroding, that culture is being trivialized. But, as in the past, we adapt—learning to use the new and retaining what is good of the old. Smarter Than You Think embraces and extols this transformation, presenting an exciting vision of the present and the future. From the Trade Paperback edition.



Changing the Game

Changing the Game Author David Edery
ISBN-10 0137151756
Release 2008-10-07
Pages 240
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Use Video Games to Drive Innovation, Customer Engagement, Productivity, and Profit! Companies of all shapes and sizes have begun to use games to revolutionize the way they interact with customers and employees, becoming more competitive and more profitable as a result. Microsoft has used games to painlessly and cost-effectively quadruple voluntary employee participation in important tasks. Medical schools have used game-like simulators to train surgeons, reducing their error rate in practice by a factor of six. A recruiting game developed by the U.S. Army, for just 0.25% of the Army’s total advertising budget, has had more impact on new recruits than all other forms of Army advertising combined. And Google is using video games to turn its visitors into a giant, voluntary labor force--encouraging them to manually label the millions of images found on the Web that Google’s computers cannot identify on their own. Changing the Game reveals how leading-edge organizations are using video games to reach new customers more cost-effectively; to build brands; to recruit, develop, and retain great employees; to drive more effective experimentation and innovation; to supercharge productivity…in short, to make it fun to do business. This book is packed with case studies, best practices, and pitfalls to avoid. It is essential reading for any forward-thinking executive, marketer, strategist, and entrepreneur, as well as anyone interested in video games in general. In-game advertising, advergames, adverworlds, and beyond Choose your best marketing opportunities--and avoid the pitfalls Use gaming to recruit and develop better employees Learn practical lessons from America’s Army and other innovative case studies Channel the passion of your user communities Help your customers improve your products and services--and have fun doing it What gamers do better than computers, scientists, or governments Use games to solve problems that can’t be solved any other way



Game Frame

Game Frame Author Aaron Dignan
ISBN-10 1451611072
Release 2011-03-08
Pages 224
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Ever wonder why teens can spend entire weekends playing video games but struggle with just one hour of homework? Why we’re addicted to certain websites and steal glances at our smartphones under the dinner table? Or why some people are able to find joy in difficult or repetitive jobs while others burn out? It’s not the experiences themselves but the way they’re structured that matters. All our lives we’ve been told that games are distractions—playful pastimes, but unrelated to success. In Game Frame, Aaron Dignan shows us that the opposite is true: games produce peak learning conditions and accelerated achievement. Here, the crucial connection between the games we love to play and the everyday tasks, goals, and dreams we have trouble realizing is illuminated. Aaron Dignan is the thirty-something founder of a successful digital strategy firm that studies the transformative power of technology in culture. He and his peers were raised on a steady diet of games and gadgets, ultimately priming them to challenge the status quo of the modern workplace. What they learned from games goes deeper than hand-eye coordination; instead, this generation intrinsically understands the value of adding the elements of games into everyday life. Game Frame is the first prescriptive explanation of what games mean to us, the human psychology behind their magnetic pull, and how we can use the lessons they teach as a framework to achieve our potential in business and beyond. Games are a powerful way to influence and change behavior in any setting. Here, Dignan outlines why games and play are such important trends in culture today, and how our technology, from our iPhones to our hybrid cars, primes us to be instinctive players. Game Frame tackles the challenging task of defining games and the mechanics that make games work from several perspectives, then explores these ideas through the lens of neuroscience. Finally, Dignan provides practical tips for using basic game mechanics in a variety of settings, such as motivating employees at work or encouraging children at home, giving readers the tools to develop their own games to solve problems in their everyday lives. Illuminated throughout with a series of real-world examples and hypothetical scenarios, Game Frame promises a crash course in game design and behavioral psychology that will leave the reader—and, by extension, the world itself—more productive. Revolutionary, visionary, practical, and time-tested, Game Frame will change the way you approach life.



Significant Zero

Significant Zero Author Walt Williams
ISBN-10 9781501129957
Release 2017-09-19
Pages 304
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"An award-winning videogame writer offers a rare behind-the-scenes look inside the gaming industry, and expands on how games are transformed from mere toys into meaningful, artistic experiences"--



The Ultimate Guide to Video Game Writing and Design

The Ultimate Guide to Video Game Writing and Design Author Flint Dille
ISBN-10 9781580650663
Release 2007
Pages 260
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Two leading game designers take readers step by step through the entire process of creating a video game, from developing a story and integrating it into a game, to writing the game script, creating the design document, working with intellectual property rights and licensing, and selling an idea to developers and publishers. Original.