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How to create an identifeye ar game – functional specs

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This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.

This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the
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How to create an identifeye ar game – functional specs

  1. 1. HOW TO CREATE AN IDENTIFEYE AR GAME – FUNCTIONAL SPECS For students in age group: 8-14 2013-1-GR1-LEO05-13907 Disclaimer In order to create their own game teachers must get into contact with the project partners – contact Mr. Onno Hansen: onno.hansen@gmail.com. Teachers need to order a copy of the game and install this copy on their own server – or request that it will be hosted by IDentifEYE. Unfortunately the creation of a copy and the optional hosting are not free. For the actual conditions and terms of use, please check out our site. The copy of the game consists of a CMS that links directly to the IDentifEYE game engine. In the CMS teachers can add, edit and delete questions, answer options, augmentations, texts, sounds and static pages and blocks – in up to four different languages simultaneously. Optionally the game interface can be personalized, again for a fee. Introduction In order to create one’s own game one need to understand the essence of the game. It is a multiple choice questionnaire in which the game immediately reacts to the individual answers given. In the game there are no scores or levels. It is not about winning or losing. Rather it provides an experience. The game is a great tool to:  Start a conversation on a “hard” subject;  Trigger understanding of an abstract subject;  Change the tone of an ongoing discussion. STEP ONE: Establish a theme Before one does anything else one needs to choose a subject for the game:  A concrete “hard” subject about which it seems difficult to talk in the class room, for instance because it is too personal or too controversial. Our didactics game for the age group 12-14 is an example.
  2. 2.  An abstract subject that needs a lot of visualization to become more accessible. Our game on the relation between online data sharing and online identities for the age group 8-11 is an example.  An ongoing discussion that has derailed and needs a change of tone. An example could be a game about how to understand the school regulation. Age group differentiation:  For students in age group 8-11 more individual themes are relevant. Too abstract themes should be avoided.  For students in age group 12-14 more social themes are relevant: themes that have to do with social norms or group processes. The themes can be abstract but should have a direct link to the daily life of one’s students. STEP TWO: Create questions As soon as one has established a theme for the game one can start to create the questions for the game. The optimal amount of questions is eight to fourteen. Only if a subject is abstract and of great interest to one’s students one could create up to twenty questions. There are several methods to create relevant game questions:  Break down the chosen theme in smaller steps and then allocate one question per step.  Create a lot of questions that are relevant for your target group and let representatives of the target group select the most relevant questions. Basically, there are two types of questions one could create:  Diagnostic questions – see the didactics section – to check whether one’s students have understood knowledge that was transferred to them.  Survey questions to poll student opinions on the chosen theme. The both IDentifEYE games are examples of this type. Age differentiation:  For students in age group 8-11 it is advisable to choose diagnostic questions or personal survey questions that directly link to personal student experiences.  For students in age group 12-14 it is advisable to choose diagnostic questions or more abstract survey questions. NB The second question in the game always is associated with the player taking a picture or not. This is a system question that is hardcoded in the game. STEP 3: Create answer options  Diagnostic questions require answer options in which one answer option represents the right interpretation of the knowledge transferred while one or more other answer options represent assumed student prejudices and false assumptions that might have survived despite the knowledge transferred.  Survey questions require a set of answer options that are relevant for the target group. Students will react negatively if an answer option is irrelevant or, worse, if a relevant answer option is missing. It is advisable to check one’s answer options against representatives of the target group when drafting.
  3. 3. STEP 4: Create augmentations per answer option Once the answer options have been drafted one needs to create augmentations for each of them individually. One could do this one’s self or involve a graphic designer in this. For the technical specs of the augmentations, please read section Creating an AR game. One has to choose between several options – for the implementation of these options see section Creating an AR game:  Static or dynamic: the augmentations can remain placed motionless at the same space on the screen or can be ordered to follow the head of the individual playing the game.  Temporary or permanent: the augmentations can be made to last only until the individual who plays the game answers the next question or can be allowed to stay until the end of the game.  Replacing or additional: the augmentations can replace any previous augmentation that was triggered by an earlier answer option or can be added to the existing set of augmentations on the screen. The replacing option is tricky to implement though. One needs to define the earlier augmentation or augmentations that one wants to replace by means of a layer code. If one would just define the new augmentation to present itself on the same place as a previous augmentation or augmentations the new augmentation will either overlap or immediately be overlapped depending on the layer code number – see the section Creating an AR game.  Animated or static: one can create augmentations that consist of one image only or animations that change form and/ or placement. The trick to animate augmentations is to upload more than one image in the CMS as augmentations associated to the relevant answer option. The multiple pictures will then be played at a speed of 12 images per second – just as film frames are played to create a film. It is a good practice to define the augmentations associated with answer options linked to one single question in such a way that they cover more or less the same space on the screen. This way it is easier to keep an oversight over all the subsequently appearing augmentations, question after question. An example of this good practice is a design like this in which “1” stands for all answer options associated with question 1, “2” for all options associated with question 2 etc.:
  4. 4. Age differentiation:  For students in age group 8-11 it is advisable to create cartoon-like, colourful animations – at best many appearing at the same time. Students in that age group also generally like lots of movement, temporary chaos and “naughty”/ funny animations.  For students in age group 12-14 it is advisable to create more realistic, more serious and “arty” augmentations – especially for 14-years old students. There should be controlled movement and a sense of overall organization in the way that augmentations are placed on the screen. STEP 5 [optional]: Create texts and sounds In addition to augmentation one can also add, optionally texts (“Ticker tape texts”) and sound files to individual answer options. The texts will be shown in the tickertape at the top of the screen. The sounds will be played temporary when the associated augmentation appears.
  5. 5. NB Be careful with adding heavy sound files. They might interfere with the game performance. STEP 6: Create static blocks and pages One can add one’s own texts in the CMS that will appear on the game start page and on additional pages – so-called “static texts”. The texts could consist of an introduction on the theme as well as an explanation on how to play the game. STEP 7 [optional]: Translate Once one has entered all the necessary content in one’s own language – questions and answers, static texts and user interface items – one can translate these texts in up to three languages. NB If one chooses to add a language beyond the current default languages (English, Greek, Polish, Spanish, Lithuanian and Dutch) one should contact us for changing the flag in the game linking to that translation. This is not cost-free. STEP 8: Create a lesson plan The game one creates is half of the job, creating an appropriate lesson plan is the other half. One creates the lesson plan by filling out the workshop lesson plan template: FIRST AND LAST NAME SCHOOL DATE EMAILADDRESS LESSON NAME CURRICULAR EXTRA-CURRICULAR IF CURRICULAR WHAT SUBJECT
  9. 9. Age group differentiation  For students in age group 8-11 it is advisable to first provide an introduction, both to the chosen theme and the game and then play the game for at least twenty minutes. During the game play there should be enough time for students to relate their personal experiences and for the occasional discussion. It is advisable to end the lesson with a “to do” task such as drawing or retrieving information online.  For students in age group 12-14 it is advisable to first provide an introduction, both to the chosen theme and the game and then play the game for a maximum of fifteen minutes. During the game play the teacher is to listen very carefully to all remarks by the students and their contributions to emerging discussions. The teacher is to come back to those in a more organized way after the game during a structured discussion. The teacher should include space for student reviews of the game. Then the teacher could end the lesson by asking students to write down their suggestions for improvement while explaining the background of their suggestions.