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Push Button: Co-Op Game Design & Arcade Aesthetics

January 10, 2014 @ 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm

MIT Game Lab Research Scientist Mikael Jakobsson talks with us about Co-Op Game Design. Designing for collaborative co-located gaming experiences offers many interesting possibilities but also challenges. What are the different ways of playing collaboratively and how can we think about design when the experience outcome is shared between two or more players? This talk will invite the participants to think through what the unique properties of local co-op gaming are and how we can mine these in our game design efforts. We will also look at potentially problematic issues involved in this particular mode of playful interaction, and think through possible ways around them.

Afterwards, MIT Game Lab Creative Director Philip Tan will discuss the aesthetics of arcade games, particularly as part of the Mechanics-Dynamics-Aesthetics (MDA) Framework for understanding game design. The future of arcade game design and development will be discussed: now that many of the arcades are closed in the US, what does public, physically co-located video game playing look like today.

Part of the Push Button: Examining the Culture, Platforms, and Design of the Arcade lecture series.

Mikael Jakobsson conducts research on the border between game design and game culture. With a foundation in interaction design, he investigates how gaming activities fit into social and cultural practices, and how this knowledge can be integrated into the development process. His work has been supported by research grants involving collaboration with several game companies. He has developed and taught courses on game design, game criticism, and interaction design, as well as supervised students at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral level.

Philip Tan is the creative director for the MIT Game Lab. He teaches CMS.608 Game Design and CMS.611J/6.073J Creating Video Games at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. For the past 6 years, he was the executive director for the US operations of the Singapore-MIT GAMBIT Game Lab, a game research initiative.


January 10, 2014
1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
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MIT Game Lab


Compton Laboratories
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