game mechanics

At first glance, Banished feels pretty familiar for gamers who grew up playing things like Age of Empires. You start with a small stock of supplies and a few workers standing around in the wilderness. Your task is to efficiently convert that wilderness into a late-medieval settlement. I was initiallyContinue Reading

Videogames are inextricably bound to ideology.  In most cases, this is not by design, but simply because game developers tend to create virtual worlds that reflect the particular way in which they see the real world.  As Ian Bogost (2006) has noted, these ideological frames are rarely explicit, making itContinue Reading

I’m often asked by colleagues who know my interest in games in education to suggest a game students can play that will teach them some particular set of knowledge or skills. “Do you know any iPad games that can teach quadratic equations?,” or “Has anyone made a game about conjugatingContinue Reading

This is a mostly serious and occasionally tongue-in-cheek open response to Kevin Bacon’s (@fauxtoegrafik) thoughtful and honest blog post “Nameless Gameless.” I’m hoping it will spark some open dialogue between a variety of folks interested in cultural heritage and meaningful play (and of course, those tricky games). Bacon, the Digital Development OfficerContinue Reading

In my previous post, I discussed the iteration of CARDs and the development of CARD-tamen™ Rome. This week, I want to return to the failed gamification attempt with the original carta collectionis mechanic. Why was it a failure? I had believed originally that we tapped into something powerful – theContinue Reading

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Gamification is all the rage. Operation Lapis show us what full-blown gamification can look like in the classroom; but if you’re not ready for that, there are other things you can do to introduce playful approaches to your teaching. I find myself teaching ‘The Historian’s Craft’ this term. There areContinue Reading

Previously I’ve taken Play the Past’s readers through an overview of Operation LAPIS and an in-depth look at the collaborative immersion element that lies at the heart of practomimetic instruction as our UConn team designs it. This week I’m going to walk you through another key component of Operation LAPIS:Continue Reading