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Unexpected game calculations in educational wargaming: Design flaw or beneficial to learning?
Försvarshögskolan, Militärvetenskapliga institutionen (MVI), Ledningsvetenskapliga avdelningen (LVA).ORCID-id: 0000-0002-1019-8933
2011 (engelsk)Inngår i: Think Design Play, 2011Konferansepaper, Publicerat paper (Fagfellevurdert)
Abstract [en]

This paper describes situations where learning games are not perceived by the player as being realistic. In educational wargaming this is seen when the game calculates battle-outcomes. Defined as unexpected game calculations, these incidents can cause players to adopt a Gamer Mode attitude, in which players reject the idea that the game accurately portrays warfare. In a study involving cadets playing a commercial strategic wargame as part of their course in war science, unexpected game calculations emerged and resulted in different user responses. Although user responses risked damaging the worth of learning from gaming, this paper argues that these incidents could enhance learning, as the cadets became interested and keen on finding rationales to why and how unexpected calculations occur.

sted, utgiver, år, opplag, sider
2011.
Emneord [en]
Game-based learning, military education, simulations, user responses, wargaming
HSV kategori
Forskningsprogram
Ledningsvetenskap
Identifikatorer
URN: urn:nbn:se:fhs:diva-2829OAI: oai:DiVA.org:fhs-2829DiVA, id: diva2:560016
Konferanse
The Fifth International Conference of the Digital Research Association (DIGRA)
Tilgjengelig fra: 2012-10-11 Laget: 2012-10-11 Sist oppdatert: 2017-01-04bibliografisk kontrollert
Inngår i avhandling
1. Gamer mode: Identifying and managing unwanted behaviour in military educational wargaming
Åpne denne publikasjonen i ny fane eller vindu >>Gamer mode: Identifying and managing unwanted behaviour in military educational wargaming
2014 (engelsk)Doktoravhandling, med artikler (Annet vitenskapelig)
Abstract [en]

Games are rule-governed systems at the same time as they are fiction, simulating or representing a real or an abstract world. This defining characteristic may create for different forms of tensions, that is, at different times players may focus on the rules, the fiction or on both during game play. In military education with games, this poses a problem when the learner becomes too focused on the rules, trying to win at any price rather than taking the representation and what it implies in terms of permissible behaviour seriously. In here we attempt to understand how participants in a wargaming situation act out this tension by studying the interaction between the player and the game in military tactical training.

The results first of all confirm that there is a tension – there are occasions where players are mainly concerned with winning the wargame, disregarding what the theme is meant to represent. I propose the term gamer mode to refer to this player orientation: players in gamer mode have an extreme rule-focused interaction, meaning they behave rationally with respect to game rules but irrationally with respect to the portrayed real-life situation they are training for. Gamer mode can probably occur for many reasons. This thesis documents two contributing factors. The first concerns whenever the game does not match players’ expectation on mimicking warfare. In these situations players may find that the game breaks the fragile contract of upholding an accurate representation of warfare. The other factor that may lead to gamer mode are game design features such as explicit reward structures or victory conditions.

To remedy the situation, the instructor can, in real-time, actively support players’ orientation towards the game and explain in-game events, keeping them on track. When gamer mode occur I argue that the conditions for learning are compromised as the gaming activity becomes its own learning subject, blurring and overshadowing the learning objective. Although the results suggest that gamer mode is mainly detrimental to learning I conclude that gamer mode is a natural way students will approach games and as such, needs to be dealt with by the instructor.

sted, utgiver, år, opplag, sider
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2014. s. viii, 103
Serie
TRITA-CSC-A, ISSN 1653-5723 ; 2014:18
Emneord
Gamer mode, military education, wargaming, game-based learning
HSV kategori
Forskningsprogram
Ledningsvetenskap
Identifikatorer
urn:nbn:se:fhs:diva-5106 (URN)978-91-7595-399-1 (ISBN)
Disputas
2015-01-23, Kollegiesalen, Brinellvägen 8, KTH, 13:15 (engelsk)
Opponent
Veileder
Tilgjengelig fra: 2014-12-19 Laget: 2014-12-19 Sist oppdatert: 2018-01-11bibliografisk kontrollert

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http://www.digra.org/dl/db/11310.31521.pdf

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