Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Bible Online – Serious Games To Meet & Play Real Heroes Of Genesis


Serious Games to actually experience the Book of Genesis


Via: The Bible Online: Heroes Official Site - The Bible Online: Heroes Beta Launches On September 6

Serious Games to Get Closer To The Bible

German developer FIAA GmbH announced last week the first chapter of their new online game based on the bible. The Heroes is the first in a series of upcoming chapters of this free MMO. It is based on the first book of the bible, the Genesis. Players slip into the role of Abraham and his descendants and have the opportunity to reenact and witness the incidents of their times.

The Bible Online: Chapter 1 – The Heroes is a MMORTS (Massive Multiplayer Online Real Time Strategy Game), where players can create their own nomadic tribes and be upgraded by hunting animals and having battles with other tribes. As the leader of their tribe, players have to construct their villages, manage resources and the budget. They will have to decide between diplomacy and warfare. However, players do not stay in one place. They will go on a quest to go to the Promised Land. Leading Abraham’s tribe from Ur to Haran and finally to Canaan, players and their heroes will face many challenges before reaching their goal.

The Bible Online: Ch1. The Heroes is based on the first book of the Bible, Genesis. The game is designed for users to actually experience the Book of Genesis by fulfilling Abraham’s quests.

The tribe leader Abraham is a hero of mankind, who followed God’s calling to the Promised Land. Through playing The Bible Online. Ch 1. The Heroes, you will meet the Hero, Abraham, and see the hope of God for the salvation of mankind.


The Bible Online: Ch.1 The Heroes also offers additional elements of RPG. When Abraham dies, Isaac becomes the tribe leader and after Isaac dies, Jacob leads the tribe. Side quests allow users to experience less known stories of the Genesis.
 
 
Dr. Alan Kim, president of FiAA GmbH says, “The Bible Online is developed for players of all ages to easily get closer to the Bible, while enjoying the game. The Beta is planned for the 6th of September. We plan to service the game in most of the European languages by the end of the year. We will also develop following chapters to cover all the stories of the Bible.”
 
About FIAA GmbH
 
FiAA GmbH is an online game publisher with its headquarters in Germany. FiAA is focusing on licensing and publishing online games worldwide and especially in Europe. The holding company Alan Bridge Co. Ltd. is located in South Korea and develops and licenses online games.
 
Find more at http://fiaa.eu/
 

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Futurelab: Challenges In Embedding Serious Games Into Formal Education

Assessing appropriateness and effectiveness of Serious Games in Education


Via: Futurelab Blog – Serious Games In Education Research Project

The latest literature review (PDF) from Futurelab – Games In Education: Serious Games - considers the potential of Serious Games as an important teaching tool, addressing the various types of digital games and the underlying pedagogy in education games.

It also looks at the challenges of embedding Serious Games in formal education and three current methods for assessing appropriateness and effectiveness of games for teaching.

From this it argues that what is required is a toolkit for educators, game designers and policy makers that allows the design and assessment of games to be used with an educational goal.

Here are the highlights.

Executive Summary

This report is a review of research around gaming environments for education. Games are used widely outside of formal education systems, for example by the military and within the health and commerce sectors. Yet their use within schools is less common. The Executive Summary section summarizes their current use and how teachers could be supported to use them appropriately.


 Identifying games that can be used for education is complex. Serious Games need to be engaging, although not necessarily fun, while the learning can be implicit or explicit. There is no uniform pedagogy within Serious or Educational games; earlier games tended to be based on a behaviorist model. Later games try to incorporate experiential, situated and socio-cultural pedagogical models. The learning outcome is dependent upon an appropriate pedagogy and the underlying game mechanics and how the content is integrated into the game so the learning is intrinsic to play.
Multiple Domains

A comparison of the use of Serious Games in multiple domains was made. The aim was to determine if the practice could be transferred to the formal educational domain.

 Serious games, particularly training simulations, are integral to the Military. They provide a safe cost effective mechanism for training tasks to be performed in hazardous circumstances or which would be time and labor intensive to set up in the real world to modify the scenario to ensure fidelity is key.

 Serious games in the Health Sector are also a growing domain. Like the military, training simulations are becoming more common for medical practitioners. Realistic role-play is time and labor intensive and traditional methods of teaching, such as card sorting, lack the psychological fidelity – that is, they do not mimic the responses that the real situation would cause.

 The use of Serious Games in Commerce is also increasing. Commerce is aware that games develop skills needed in everyday life, like confidence in taking risks and improving communication across the organization. They also take advantage of the fact many new employees understand the concept of games and appreciate the flexibility when carrying out learning exercises.

 Games also have a Vocational potential. Simulations are used for continuing professional development and training. They may also be useful for young people not in education, employment or training (NEETS). They can act as a safe introduction to various vocational careers – failure is not an issue, in fact it is expected, when learning a game.

 Serious Games for Informal Learning are also proliferating due to increased commissioning. Channel 4, the Parliamentary Education Group, DEFRA and the US government (who held a competition around games for health) are commissioning games to engage and educate young people. They are used because of the high level of gaming that occurs within these age groups, the cost effectiveness and reach that games have. Unlike vocational training or formal education there is less direct assessment of the learning that occurs in these games.

 In Formal Education there are examples where games used with sufficient support are shown to be motivational and an aid to learning high level or complex skills. Some researchers, notably Gee and Shaffer, argue that games, particularly epistemic games that model professional practice, are good for teaching and assessing because the best commercial games provide appropriate challenges, they build on previous information; they require problem solving and critical thinking. This practice has not yet transferred to the classroom. This, they argue, is because games teach and assess 21st century skills, such as problem solving, collaboration, negotiation etc that are not the foundation of the current education system. Currently games are more likely to be used if they can be seen to inspire, or there is a direct link to the curriculum. The latter is more likely if the game can provide appropriate assessment and fits into existing lesson structures. The criterion for using a game is often whether it will make the teacher’s life easier.
The Challenges

This chapter looks at how these challenges can be approached through the use of three frameworks, which may help educators identify the issues, most appropriate games and benefits of their use.
 The Relevance, Embedding, Transfer, Adaption, Immersion and Naturalization (RETAIN) Model was developed to support game development, and in the rubric developed, assess how well educational games contain and incorporate academic content.

 The Four-dimensional framework aims to assist evaluating the potential of games- and simulation-based learning.

Balancing pedagogy, game and reality components tries to identify a fine balance when designing or using games with an educational focus.
Discussion and Conclusion

The report wraps up with the consideration that if Serious Games, which are currently on the fringe of classroom use, are to become mainstream, .evidence of their effectiveness and how they will achieve the teachers’ goals is required.



Serious Games Facilitating Language Learning And Cultural Development

Serious Games’ to aid the learning and development of language courses


PRESS RELEASE BY CASPIAN LEARNING - Dated: Aug 20, 2010

3d Simulation Tool Makes Light Work of Serious Games in Malaysia

3d Simulation Software and Serious Games Authoring Tool, Thinking Worlds, plays its part in facilitating language learning and cultural development in 2 day workshop in Malaysia delivered by the Serious Games Institute.

On July 14th/15th, David Wortley, Director of the Serious Games Institute, based in the Coventry Innovation Village, ran a 2 day workshop on Serious Games for Education Development in Penang, Malaysia. The workshop used Caspian Learning’s Thinking Worlds as its core technology application of choice and the aim of the two day workshop was to show the possibilities that exist for immersive learning simulations or Serious Games to aid the learning and development of language courses.

During the first day of the workshop, the class of delegates were tasked with completing a short tutorial course that taught them how to create simulations with Thinking Worlds. During the second day, the delegates were pitted against each other in small teams to compete with one another to see who could build the ‘best learning game.’

The workshop emphasizes a growing worldwide appetite for the application of serious games for learning and development and Lee Rushworth, Marketing Executive for Caspian Learning said “we are delighted to see Thinking Worlds being used for Serious Games development in countries as far away from our base as Malaysia, Thailand and Australia.” He went on to say, “this only serves to highlight how serious games and game based learning are gaining real support and momentum on a global scale and we’re absolutely delighted to be part of that.”

The Serious Games Institute is a global thought leader in smart spaces. They enable and facilitate the growth of Serious Games, virtual worlds and connected industry specialists by supporting research and development into the use and effects of these products, platforms and technologies.


About Caspian Learning

Caspian Learning are an Award-Winning Serious Games Development company and their globally unique 3d authoring tool and game engine, Thinking Worlds, enables the rapid development of immersive learning simulations and serious games for performance and training.

Related Posts
Serious Games Deployment To The Web Streamlined By Caspian Learning
Serious Games Improving Training and Performance Metrics
Caspian and Bohemia Shaping The Military Serious Games Market
Serious Games Technology Co Cuts Cost of 3D Development With New Launch

Friday, August 20, 2010

Serious Games Research: Press Play To Grow!

Serious Games catalyzing human development in video games


Via: Press Play To Grow! – Play Video Games & Grow



The Press Play to Grow! initiative was founded by Moses Silbiger, M.A. and has been developed in partnership with like-minded researchers, game designers, critics, and enthusiasts for gaming and human development.


Moses Silbiger has a Masters degree in Integral Psychology at John F. Kennedy University, with an academic certification in Coaching. He is also an architect, graphic designer and entrepreneur.


Along with his Integral Coaching & Consulting practice, Moses has been continually exploring and researching the potentials of designing video games for catalyzing and integrating human development, and has presented his work in various conferences, articles, and interviews.

As part of his integral-developmental video games initiative, Moses has developed the INDENTRO video game design framework designed to catalyze personal growth in multiple intelligences through video game play.

Games as “Trojan Horses” for Catalyzing and Integrating Human Development

The Integral-Developmental Trojan Horse (INDENTRO) video game design framework offers a deep, broad, integrative approach composed of practical tools to leverage various human developmental practices into video game play.

According to Moses Silbiger, applying this model as a Developmental Psychology Framework can support game designers to skilfully create Serious Games for Personal Growth.

As Moses declares on his website:


“The fact that video games have been already promoting growth in different lines of intelligence is in itself remarkable.”

“However, by observing through my research how random, indirect, collateral, narrow, or fragmented different aspects of human development tend to happen by playing existent video games, I realized the fundamental importance of assessing and categorizing them into a more integrated and complementary approach for designing video games that can be purposefully transformative.”

“Based on the INDENTRO Framework, both parents, gamers, coaches, guides, counsellors, teachers, leaders (and even whole organizations and institutions) would also have a clearer and better sense of the best ways to use those video games for their various developmental goals and aspirations.”




Re-Posted: e-Guru - Serious Games Supporting Career Paths & Choices


Santander launches an interactive platform for vocational discovery



Via: e-GuruThe Art of Teaching Without Limits

Established in 2001 in Brazil to provide learning solutions for large corporations, e-Guru has been developing Educational and Recruitment Programs that make use of game-based approach and technology.

e-Guru employs Serious Games as a means to ensure content retention by simulating everyday work situations. The methodology developed and adopted by e-Guru can be applied to Sales Force Training, Induction Programs, Business Games, Coaching and Feedback, Company Policies, Product Presentation and even Recruitment Games and Competency Diagnosis.

e-Guru has recently developed an interactive platform for Santander Bank - Santander Paths & Choices - to support young professionals in their vocational discovery and career choice.


From the observation that the model adopted for the selection of trainees did not allow bank recruiters to know the candidates well, the platform was designed to meet specific demands and wishes of generations Y and Z.

The platform makes use of virtual workshops in which participants can simulate how to perform in the various areas of a corporate bank and respond through surveys which other market sectors they would be interested to experiment. The platform also includes career guidance games, the Career Paths, as well as bank areas virtual tours, micro blogging, forum and chat with the experts. Players may attend and suggest communities focused on the dreams and dilemmas related to career choices. Access is free.

"We have started to develop this project about a year ago, with the participation of academia, young professionals and entrepreneurs. It has been a co- creation process, in which we’ve made a point of listening to the needs, views and interests of this new generation that has many doubts about what career paths to follow", says Lilian Guimaraes, executive HR Vice President.

"Through Santander Paths & Choices Platform, we offer young people opportunities for experimentation, reflection and professional development. It is open to anyone who wants to participate as part of Santander’s value proposition to the external stakeholders at large.

With this initiative, the bank proposes a new mode of relationship with the target audience, using virtual tools and the language of these generations. Moreover, Santander Brazil has developed the expertise with their own staff - of the 50 000 employees, more than 20 000 are from Generation Y. In addition, interactive tools such as Blogs, Twitter and the internal virtual community known as Collaborative Circle are already part of the company’s daily communication.

"Santander Paths & Choices is unprecedented in the market since it considers the individual professional interests of participants, even if they do not aspire to work in the financial market. The space offers a rich content that ranges from articles to interaction with experts for career guidance that young people can enjoy regardless where they decide to work", says Paula Giannetti, coordinator of the project.

In Corporate Credit Risk - Large Corporations, for example, players can simulate planning, analysis and CRM via online experimentation. New activities will be part of the project throughout the year and players can contribute to the creation of new interactions through the polls.

Santander Group does not have access to content generated by players during simulations. The bank knows just what tools are being accessed by registered users.

About Santander Group Worldwide

With more than 150 years of operation, the Santander Group, headquartered in Madrid, Spain, is among world’s largest financial institutions. Originally founded in the province of Cantabria, Santander operates in many countries with great geographical diversification. In December 2009, it had 13,660 branches, around 170 000 employees, about 90 million customers, over 3 million shareholders, and volume of funds managed amounting to 1,794 billion dollars. In 2009, net income totaled 12.4 billion dollars.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

IDATE: Serious Games - A 10 Billion Euro Market In 2015

IDATE has just released its Serious Games market report


Via: IDATE - PRESS RELEASE

Montpellier, 7 July 2010 - IDATE has released its Serious Games market report which provides in-depth analysis on the different markets, and their growth outlook up to 2015. The top Serious Games Market players are profiled, along with the sector’s latest trends.

“This report provides readers with a comprehensive portrait of the Serious Games market through an analysis of its impact on the video game industry’s value chain, and by examining a series of business models,” explains Laurent Michaud, Head of IDATE’s Digital Home Entertainment Unit.

“Up until now, Serious Games have been designed to be played on a computer, but mobile handsets are already much more widely used in emerging economies which makes them the platform of choice for the development of Serious Games.”

The Serious Games sector is expected to grow significantly in the medium term. IDATE estimates that it currently generates 1.5 billion EUR in revenue around the globe, and that by 2015 sales will be almost seven times what they are in 2010 – with an average annual growth rate of 47% between 2010 and 2015. Plus, we can expect to see the business world’s interest in Serious Games increase around 2013, and especially small and medium enterprises (SME) whose awareness of these tools is still rather limited.

An Original Value Chain

The value chain for Serious Games has fewer links than the classic video game chain. The most common structure is a single player that handles the development, publication, distribution and sales of its games. A great many players actually publish only a single title whose sales and installation/implementation for customers occupy its entire sales and support staff.

Low-end instruments are the most widely used development tools in the sector today, as they are the only ones that most developers can afford – with high-end gaming engines costing in excess of 250,000 USD. At this stage in the Serious Gaming sector’s development, the value chain is more software and service-centric than device-centric.

Here, most Serious Games are designed to be played on a computer, and few have been developed for other platforms. The mobile phone is still the device that currently offers the most interesting alternative to the PC, and it is also the platform of choice for the development of Serious Games in emerging economies where people can get hold of a mobile much more easily than a computer.

Serious Gaming software is still more important than any service that might be associated with it. In other words, the most common configuration is a user playing the game alone and usually locally, as opposed to online.

But Serious Games are not meant to replace existing forms of information, communication or training, but rather to flesh them out and enhance them with interactivity, GUI and a video game’s ability to plunge the user into an environment where she will be more receptive to the message being transmitted. Plus the social aspect of a Serious Game, which fits naturally with a multi-user or even a massively multiplayer approach, will be the prime areas of focus in the coming years, for both the “player” of the game and the professional using it as a tool.

As a result, Serious Games cannot do away with:

• professional support for the game;

• an associated service (aside from management of the application and its functionalities in software-as-a-service mode) which:

- trains future users of the Serious Game, whether they are professionals, citizens, consumers or students;

- regularly tailors the application to the situation;

- configures the game, possibly remotely, according to the targeted users, patient, citizen or learner/student;

- collects the results from use of the serious game, interprets them, shares them and injects them back into the gameplay to help the player progress.


The Value Chain in 2015
“Serious Games” (Market & Data Report, July 2010)
 
This report analyses the different serious gaming markets, drawing on a systematic examination of the technologies, usage and the professions involved, providing details on the key stages of design, development and distribution:
 
• Analysis of the long-term development of the use of Serious Games and the industry as a whole;
 
• Segmentation by market: Teaching & Training, Defence and Public Safety, Healthcare and Information;
 
• 50 business models;
 
• Market figures 2010-2015.


Project Manager
Laurent Michaud
l.michaud at idate.org

About IDATE

Founded in 1977, IDATE is one of Europe’s foremost market analysis and consulting firms, whose mission is to provide assistance in strategic decision-making for its clients in the Telecom, Internet and Media industries, through the following two areas of activity: Consulting & Research (an independent consultancy and publication f a catalogue of market reports) and the DigiWorld Programme (a member-supported annual programme DigiWorld Club, DigiWorld Summit, DigiWorld Yearbook Communications & Strategies…).

IDATE has developed its media analysis expertise (TV, Internet and digital content) and has become a preferred consultant for media companies, a key interlocutor for public policy-makers and an advisor to equipment maufacturers and telecom carriers the world over.


For more information visit http://www.idate-research.com/

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Serious Games Supporting Career Paths & Choices


Santander launches an interactive platform for vocational discovery


Via: e-GuruThe Art of Teaching Without Limits

Established in 2001 in Brazil to provide learning solutions for large corporations, e-Guru has been developing Educational and Recruitment Programs that make use of game-based approach and technology.

e-Guru employs Serious Games as a means to ensure content retention by simulating everyday work situations. The methodology developed and adopted by e-Guru can be applied to Sales Force Training, Induction Programs, Business Games, Coaching and Feedback, Company Policies, Product Presentation and even Recruitment Games and Competency Diagnosis.


e-Guru has recently developed an interactive platform for Santander Bank - Santander Paths & Choices - to support young professionals in their vocational discovery and career choice.

From the observation that the model adopted for the selection of trainees did not allow bank recruiters to know the candidates well, the platform was designed to meet specific demands and wishes of generations Y and Z.

The platform makes use of virtual workshops in which participants can simulate how to perform in the various areas of a corporate bank and respond through surveys which other market sectors they would be interested to experiment. The platform also includes career guidance games, the Career Paths, as well as bank areas virtual tours, micro blogging, forum and chat with the experts. Players may attend and suggest communities focused on the dreams and dilemmas related to career choices. Access is free.

"We have started to develop this project about a year ago, with the participation of academia, young professionals and entrepreneurs. It has been a co- creation process, in which we’ve made a point of listening to the needs, views and interests of this new generation that has many doubts about what career paths to follow", says Lilian Guimaraes, executive HR Vice President.

"Through Santander Paths & Choices Platform, we offer young people opportunities for experimentation, reflection and professional development. It is open to anyone who wants to participate as part of Santander’s value proposition to the external stakeholders at large.

With this initiative, the bank proposes a new mode of relationship with the target audience, using virtual tools and the language of these generations. Moreover, Santander Brazil has developed the expertise with their own staff - of the 50 000 employees, more than 20 000 are from Generation Y. In addition, interactive tools such as Blogs, Twitter and the internal virtual community known as Collaborative Circle are already part of the company’s daily communication.

"Santander Paths & Choices is unprecedented in the market since it considers the individual professional interests of participants, even if they do not aspire to work in the financial market. The space offers a rich content that ranges from articles to interaction with experts for career guidance that young people can enjoy regardless where they decide to work", says Paula Giannetti, coordinator of the project.

In Corporate Credit Risk - Large Corporations, for example, players can simulate planning, analysis and CRM via online experimentation. New activities will be part of the project throughout the year and players can contribute to the creation of new interactions through the polls.

Santander Group does not have access to content generated by players during simulations. The bank knows just what tools are being accessed by registered users.

About Santander Group Worldwide

With more than 150 years of operation, the Santander Group, headquartered in Madrid, Spain, is among world’s largest financial institutions. Originally founded in the province of Cantabria, Santander operates in many countries with great geographical diversification. In December 2009, it had 13,660 branches, around 170 000 employees, about 90 million customers, over 3 million shareholders, and volume of funds managed amounting to 1,794 billion dollars. In 2009, net income totaled 12.4 billion dollars.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Serious Games For Online Language-Learning


Serious Games challenging us to play a better education


Via: Gamasutra - Middlebury Enlists Muzzy Lane for Online Language-Learning RPG

Serious Games to immerse players in environments unique to each language's specific culture

Middlebury Interactive Languages, a leading figure in foreign language instruction for children and young adults, has reached an agreement with Making History series creator Muzzy Lane Software to produce an online language-learning role-playing game.

The upcoming game, aimed at high school students, will supplement Middlebury's full-immersion online foreign language courses. The company operates the Middlebury-Monterey Language Academy, a four-week language learning program that will reach over 800 students this summer.


Muzzy Lane's game will be a first-person online RPG that immerses players in environments unique to each language's specific culture. Students will interact with other players and with computer-controlled characters that are voiced by native speakers.
 
"We are excited to be partnering with Muzzy Lane to develop a full immersion language game as a part of our new Middlebury Interactive product," said Dave Benoit, chief executive officer of Middlebury Interactive Languages. "Foreign languages are critical to the skill set of today’s young people and the combination of Middlebury's academic expertise and Muzzy Lane's gaming technology will prove to be a strong combination."
 
"We are thrilled to be developing the game worlds for Middlebury Interactive Language," said Dave McCool, president of Muzzy Lane. "We have seen how online, multiplayer games create deeply engaging and immersive environments. Our structured, virtual world platform provides a great medium to extend Middlebury's proven immersive foreign language programs to the online world."
 
The initial versions of Muzzy Lane Software's game will focus on Spanish and French upon the project's launch later this year.
 
About Middlebury Interactive Languages
 
With the world growing more connected every day, the need to communicate effectively in a foreign language is clear. Despite that, only 18% of Americans speak a second language, compared to more than 50% in the European Union.
 
Middlebury Interactive Languages, LLC, is an online language learning company that combines the rich history of Middlebury College’s language programs with K¹²’s patented and ground-breaking methodologies for creating effective online courses.
 
For nearly 100 years, Middlebury College’s language programs have been immersing students in language, helping them make huge leaps in ability, confidence and cultural understanding. K¹² is the leader in online learning for grades K-12, with over 2 million courses delivered to date, a patented method for online learning, and a 95% satisfaction rating from parents. Middlebury’s pioneering approach in language learning combined with K¹²’s unique knowledge of creating dynamic, effective online courses will create market-changing, 21st Century online language learning options for students in grades K-12.
 
For more information, visit http://www.middleburyinteractivelanguages.com/
 
About Muzzy Lane Software
 
Muzzy Lane Software is an innovative developer of 3D single and multiplayer games. Based in Newburyport, Mass, the company creates its own branded games and works with partners to produce private-label games based on the company’s Sandstone platform. Sandstone delivers true 3D games in the browser, as a web service, with tight integration between the games and the web. Muzzy Lane provides simple web tools that support the customization of Sandstone games.
 
For more information, visit http://www.muzzylane.com./
 

Serious Games Capturing How Humans Really Learn


Richard Carey On The Future Of Video and Serious Games

Massively multiplayer virtual world for teens Whyville


Richard Carey has posted earlier this week a must-read article, The Future of Video Games: The Kids Are Alright, where he recaps “the long strange trip it’s been, since video games were seen as nothing more than a waste of time until recently when the conversation has shifted to how Serious Games are an ideal learning environment".

Richard Carey also highlights the work of Dr. Jim Bower, a computational neuroscientist at the University of Texas and the CEO of Numedeon, publishers of the massively multiplayer virtual world for teens Whyville.net.

He was on a panel “The Future of Video Games” and interviewed at the South By Southwest festival earlier this year, portions of which were recently published on the September 2010 issue of Discover Magazine, and discussed why he thinks video games are good for learning.

Looking at whether video games are different from other forms of play, Dr. Jim observes: “We look at this thing and we think it’s new. It’s not. This is something we’ve made in our own image. What we’re doing is trying to capture how humans really learn, how humans really interact, and how humans really build their societies. And in fact (we’re finding) it’s not new at all. It’s very old. The problem is, for the last 600 years we’ve been doing it wrong (and until now) we haven’t had the technology to do it right.”

The videos for the entire panel discussion, moderated by Discover’s Amos Zeeberg, with Tiffany Barnes (University of North Carolina), Lucy Bradshaw (Maxis), Anne McLaughlin (North Carolina State), can be found on the same Richard Carey’s post at http://www.richardcarey.net/2010/08/12/the-future-of-video-games-the-kids-are-going-to-be-alright/

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Serious Games Video Lectures By Daniel Floyd

Serious Games to enable learning rather than educate



Via: You Tube Kirithem’s Channel

Daniel Floyd is an aspiring character animator living near Athens, Georgia. He has recently finished his studies at Animation Mentor and looks forward to starting his animation career.

Prior to Animation Mentor, Daniel studied animation at both the Savannah College of Art & Design, and the University of Georgia.

In addition to his animation work, Daniel also runs a series of video "lectures" with game designer James Portnow, co-founder of Divide By Zero Games, presenting a wide variety of video gaming issues and game design theory, including Video Games and Learning. These videos have been featured along with Portnow's columns on sites including Edge and Gamasutra.

Daniel Floyd’s You Tube Channel has more than 9000 subscribers and 16 video uploads, Video Games and Learning being amongst the top rated ones with almost 100k views.


As of July 26, 2010 they’ve been picked up by The Escapist and we'll be airing a new episode every Thursday.

See video announcement here.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Serious Games Deployment To The Web Streamlined By Caspian Learning


Serious Games latest breakthroughs


Via: Caspian Learning

PRESS RELEASE

Caspian Learning Unveils Powerful Web Deployment Technology
London, UK, 1st August 2010

Summary

Serious Games Design and Technology Company, Caspian Learning, today unveiled their latest technology development that will allow their award winning Thinking Worlds rapid 3D authoring tool to deploy games to the web without the need for additional 3rd party downloads.

The company behind the award-winning Thinking Worlds rapid 3D authoring tool, Caspian Learning, is proud to announce their recent breakthrough in web deployment technology that allows simulations created with Thinking Worlds to be deployed to the web not only in Shockwave, but in Java too.

The new development means that Serious Games and simulations created with Caspian Learning’s authoring tool could be deployed to the web without the need for any additional downloads or 3rd party plugins that could affect network security or require special clearance.

In their most recent Research & Development pipeline, Caspian Learning integrated Java Applet and Java Webstart deployment into core Thinking Worlds functionality. Users of the simulation authoring tool will soon be able to export games straight to the web via Java.

Lee Rushworth, Marketing Executive for Caspian Learning said that “Java technology is present in almost all of the world’s corporate and military networks. Having the ability to rapidly create and publish simulations into these secure networks without the need for additional 3rd party plugins removes another huge barrier to the widespread adoption of simulations for training and performance within these sectors.”

He went on to say that “pairing this functionality with Thinking Worlds’ existing rapid development technology will give designers even more power at their fingertips to help get simulations in front of trainees quicker and more cost-effectively than ever before.”

The company believe the recent breakthrough will reaffirm Caspian Learning’s continuing commitment to developing the world’s leading 3D serious games engine and authoring tool.

The Java deployment technology is scheduled to be integrated into Thinking Worlds during its next version release.

You can download a free trial to the most recent version of Thinking Worlds from: http://www.thinkingworlds.com./

About Caspian Learning

Caspian Learning was founded in 2002 and is Europe’s leading developer of immersive learning simulations and serious games for performance and training. Their award-winning 3D authoring tool, Thinking Worlds, is a globally unique software application that allows instructional designers to create fully immersive 3D simulations at costs previously restricted to 2D development. Caspian Learning has worked with clients such as IBM, BBC, QinetiQ, Volvo, The Ministry of Defence and the European Union.

Playnormous Serious Games Featured in Nickelodeon Back-To-School Event


Serious Games challenging us to play a better future



Via: Playnormous

PRESS RELEASE

PLAYNORMOUS TO BE FEATURED IN NICKELODEON BACK-TO-SCHOOL EVENT
AWARD-WINNING VIDEO GAME WILL APPEAR IN AUGUST’S ONLINE MEET AND GREET PARTY

Houston, Texas (August 3, 2010) -- Playnormous, an award-winning producer of health entertainment media for children, announced today its Fun For A Change childhood obesity prevention Serious Games will be featured in Nickelodeon’s August ParentsConnect Back to School Bash! online party.

Playnormous and its video game CD-ROM will be a featured partner. Fun For A Change is winner of Creative Child Magazine’s 2010 Media of the Year Award. One lucky ParentConnect participant will win a Fun For A Change CD-ROM. Moms will gather at http://www.parentsconnect.com/ on Friday August 19, 2010. Registered members will “party” by playing games, chatting about parenting topics and winning prizes.

Nickelodeon’s monthly parties are hosted by a celebrity guest. Previous hosts include Tony Award Winner Marissa Jaret Winokur and reality show star Ramona Singer of The Real Housewives of New York City. ParentsConnect parties are featured in monthly TV spots on NickJr and are an integral part of Nick.com and NickJr.com’s Facebook and Twitter campaigns.

Targeted to K-5th grade children, Fun For A Change includes five nutrition and exercise knowledge mini-games: Pyramid Pile Up, Lunch Crunch, Bubble Rubble, Brain Gain and Juice Jumble. Bonus features include parent/teacher guides, a digital storybook and information about childhood obesity and type 2 diabetes. Fun For A Change can also be purchased online at http://www.playnormous.com/.

Playnormous.com is Google’s highest ranked website for the search term “health games.” The award-wining website used by schools all over the country.

Playnormous video games are collaborations between psychologists, nutrition and physical activity experts and entertainment producers. The company is a subsidiary of Archimage, Inc., a 27-year-old design studio and recipient of over 50 design awards. Clients include the National Cancer Institute, US Department of Agriculture, Baylor College of Medicine, the University of Texas Health Science Center and Rice University. Archimage has also created computer graphics for The Walt Disney Company, Nintendo and Knowledge Adventure.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

STEG'10: Third Workshop on Story-Telling and Serious Games


Story-telling and educational serious gaming emulate real life




Third Workshop on Story-Telling and Educational (Serious) Games (STEG'10)

December 8-10, 2010, Shanghai, China
Call for Papers
Early bird registration deadline: Nov 15, 2010

In conjunction with the 9th International Conference on Web-based Learning (ICWL 2010)

Stories and story-telling are cultural achievements of significant relevance even in modern times. Nowadays, story-telling is being enhanced with the convergence of sociology, pedagogy, and technology.

Recently, computer gaming is also deployed for educational purposes and has proved to be an effective approach to mental stimulation and intelligence development. Many conceptual similarities and some procedural correlation exist between story-telling and educational gaming. Therefore these two areas can be clubbed for research on Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL). Many facets of story-telling and educational gaming emulate real life processes, which can be represented either as complex story graphs or as interleaved sub-problems.

While the integration of learning and gaming provides a great opportunity, several motivational challenges must also be addressed to ensure successful realization. Non-linear digital stories are an ideal starting point for the creation of educational games, since each story addresses a certain problem, so that the story recipient can benefit from other users’ experiences. This leads to the development of more realistic stories providing the kernel for non-trivial educational videogames. These stories cover the instructional part of an educational game, while the game adds the motivation and engagement part.

his workshop aims at bringing together researchers, experts and practitioners from the domains of non-linear digital interactive story-telling and educational gaming to share ideas and knowledge. There is a great amount of separate research in these two fields and the celebration of this workshop will allow the participants to discover and leverage potential synergies.

Workshop topics

Theories in story-telling and games

Story-telling and educational game design paradigms

Augmented story-telling and gaming

Story-telling and educational gaming with social software

Mobile story-telling and educational gaming

Cross-media/transmedia story-telling and gaming

Computer gaming for story-telling (Game design for narrative architectures)

Multimedia story and game authoring

Story-telling for creating educational game content

Story-telling and educational gaming applications

Registration

Scientific researchers and industry partners within the story-telling and educational gaming domain are invited to participate in STEG'10. Please use the ICWL10 conference website to register: http://www.hkws.org/conference/icwl2010/registration.html

Submissions

Authors are invited to submit original unpublished research as full papers (max. 10 pages) or work-in-progress as short papers (max. 5 pages) according to the Springer LNCS format (http://www.springer.com/lncs). For camera-ready format instructions, please see "For Authors" instructions at http://www.springer.de/comp/lncs/authors.html. All submitted papers will be peer-reviewed for originality, significance, clarity and quality. Accepted papers will be published online as part of the CEUR Workshop proceedings series. CEUR-WS.org is a recognized ISSN publication series, ISSN 1613-0073.

To submit your paper please use the STEG submission website hosted at easychair: http://www.easychair.org/conferences/?conf=steg10

Important dates

Paper Submission: September 24, 2010

Notification of acceptance: October 22, 2010

Camera Ready Submission: November 12, 2010

Workshop date: December 8-10, 2010