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Informant Design Workshop 4

The prototype (VAD 3) tested during the workshop V introduced an extra quest and challenge at the beginning of the storyline, where the players look for Dr. Kong Long. Adopting the curricular content (in preparation of school implementation and based on students’ and teachers’ suggestions), players had to get to various locations using clues (such as compass bearings and landmarks) and figure out the features of the specific locations (e.g., elevation) in order to obtain the directions to meet Dr. Kong Long.
Some students (especially those who are good at gaming)
found it very engaging and said that it is different from how they typically navigate in other games; thus perhaps providing them with new, achievable challenge. On the other hand, few others who do not play computer games regularly took the compass as blocking their view in the 3D space. Workshop V tested out this new quest in the game as well as concepts of other quests and new avatars. Most importantly, we gave them a focused task of designing quests around plate tectonics and dinosaur capture. Students gathered in their own groups and came up with their own ideas about the quests.
The students' ideas about the plate tectonics and dinosaur capture quests show their cultural models about the world: people can achieve things by working with others, tools, and environment. It shows that each of them could be stronger and achieve things that are beyond their capabilities because of the people they collaborate, tools that enable them, and the environmental limitations and/or possibilities.
For the ideas about plate tectonics quest, all the groups directly related them to the volcanic eruptions. The variations were in the role of volcanic eruptions: as player’s means of destroying something improper, as something that should not happen (a bad guy trying to make it erupt to kill dinosaurs), or as a context that provides a further challenge to another quest. For the ideas about dinosaur capture quest, all the groups included some sort of dinosaur luring methods in order to use their special tools and skills. Similar to the tectonic plates quest, students suggested that players would have to dependent on the various tools (e.g., robot, rocks, cage, and a weapon), other luring methods (prey and mating sound), and each other as avatars with different capabilities in order to achieve their quest. They need to decide what to use and how to work together.
Subpages (1): Workshop Video