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Chalk, props, and costumes: Two exercises for teaching pervasive game design
journal contributionposted on 04.05.2018, 00:00 authored by J Tanenbaum, D Gardner, Michael CowlingMichael Cowling
Pervasive games represent a unique challenge for teachers and designers. By definition they escape the traditional temporal, spatial, and social boundaries that often contain play,1 often taking place over large public geographies with big player communities, and ill-defined play sessions. This makes them difficult to playtest and iterate for designers, and it often renders them inaccessible to students. Games like Pac Manhattan2 can be studied by students via videos and online documentation, but these are often inadequate for communicating the lived experience of play that is central to game design education. In this article we explore how toys, props, and costumes can be used in combination with simple prompts as design materials for the creation of public pervasive game play experiences. We describe two classroom exercises which use readily available analog materials to create alternate realities within the campus environment.