Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
nitive function. These activities are of personal
choice and increasingly include video games
(Johnson, 2006). One can specifically analyze
the case of the rising popularity of “Massively
Multiplayer Online Games” (MMOGs), a recent
phenomenon made possible by the popularization
of broadband connections in addition to the new
generation of computers and consoles that permit
access to complex virtual worlds with millions of
people playing in real-time (Steinkuehler, 2004).
According to Beedle and Wright (2007), the
artificial intelligence systems that constitute
electronic games function as an organizational
mechanism based on rules which maintain the
game challenge for players. This continuous cog-
nitive challenge along with activities that demand
player cooperation creates a rich environment for
incidental learning which is fundamental for the
development of useful learning.
and Adventure Games created to be played in
multiplayer mode in an open community.
Historically, MMORPGs appear as a form of
transferring the universe previously created for
“Multi-user Dungeon” (MUD) to the electronic
world. Generally, the player must travel the globe
performing specific tasks. In this same scope
“Massively Multiplayer Online First Person
Shooters” (MMOFPS) appeared for war simu-
lations, just as “Massively Multiplayer Online
Social Game” (MMOSG) which appeared for
environments where socialization is one of the
main functionalities (Christofoli, 2006).
It is possible to affirm that these games vary
only in terms of the theme chosen therefore they
can be designated as “Massively Multiplayer
Online Games” (MMOG). This terminology in-
cludes electronic games created with the purpose
of being played online in multiplayer mode in
an open community where interaction between
players is fundamental for success (Galarneau,
2005; Jakobsson & Taylor, 2003).
MMOG: MASSIVELY
MULTIPLAYER ONLINE GAMES
THE EDUCATIONAL
POTENTIAL OF GAMES
In an effort to establish categories for electronic
games that take into account the world of online
games, Natkin (2006) creates a classification
system that considers the knowledge players
possess in terms of game rules proposing four
game types: Puzzles; Strategic Games; Action
Games; and Adventure Games. This classification
also takes into account individual and collective
games that can be played both online and offline.
Meanwhile, as indicated by the author himself,
the combination of these basic game structures
leads to other game types. Furthermore, these
same items can be expanded into multiplayer
games. These will be differentiated according
to the type of community: closed ( a small group
of acquainted players share a game session) and
open (players who may or may not know each
other meet spontaneously online).
This way, Natkin (2006) describes “Mas-
sively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games”
(MMORPG) as being a junction of Action Games
There are various studies that come to positive
results after analyzing the application of specific
games in a classroom context. This is especially
factual when it comes to the improvement of con-
centration, the stimulation of task performance, the
improvement of visual intelligence, and hand-eye
coordination (Beedle & Wright, 2007; Ferdig,
2007; Graells, 2001; Van Eck, 2006).
Electronic games are bringing forward a greater
complexity of objectives as well as a challenging
environment for the player. Competitors must be
capable of learning to define a hierarchy among a
wide range of tasks. Here, the player must choose
the ideal course to follow and define the main
goal because the game itself does not always
do so. Furthermore, one must be able to use the
interactive and communicative tools supplied
for the exchange of experiences that permit the
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