Designing multiplayer games to facilitate emergent social behaviours online

Vogiazou, Y. and Eisenstadt, Marc (2005). Designing multiplayer games to facilitate emergent social behaviours online. Interactive Technology and Smart Education, 2(2 Pape) pp. 113–126.

URL: http://www.troubador.co.uk/itse/default.asp

Abstract

This paper discusses an exploratory case study of the design of games that facilitate spontaneous social interaction and group behaviours among distributed individuals, based largely on symbolic presence 'state' changes. We present the principles guiding the design of our game environment: presence as a symbolic phenomenon, the importance of good visualization and the potential for spontaneous self-organization among groups of people. Our game environment, comprising a family of multiplayer 'bumper-car' style games, is described, followed by a discussion of lessons learned from observing users of the environment. Finally, we reconsider and extend our design principles in light of our observations.

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