Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Gaming Design With Kids In Mind: A How To

To paraphrase Mr. Rogers, play is the the "work" of children. And whether you are a game designer, a child psychologist, a user experience researcher, or are conducting playtesting, knowing how to approach this sort of gaming study is important. As researcher, user experience designer and author Antonia writes...
Gaming means a lot to me, not only was it my introduction to the digital world, it gave me a sense of belonging as a teenager. So any opportunity I get to work with game creation, I tend to throw myself into it, and so with research as well. This post is about some of the important tips, observations and experience I’ve had while running a research piece with kids. 
In this study, the research was to explore the usability of hand-held consoles vs tablets/smartphones with kids between the ages of 2 and 10. I had a sample size of 6. The research method was ethnography which I think is the best method when working with children. You want to learn and cocreate with them in a natural environment free of fear and stress.
Even if you don't think you'll ever be in a line of work involving playtesting or kids, the entire piece is a fascinating look at just what goes into feedback and game design, so I'd recommend you read the whole thing.

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