GDC08: Serious Games As Passively Multiplayer Online Games

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by: Eliane Alhadeff

Passively Multiplayer Online Games! We’re already playing them; especially as we increasingly hang out with other people on the internets. And as the internets move into our pockets, our cities, our cars and our social lives!

Serious Games challenging us to play a better future

PMOG looks to explore and explain this exciting world. For now they’re drawing the connections between games and activities that point the way to our passively entertaining future!

For more information about the company who hosts the web site, check out GameLayers, a small game design company, building playful experiences in your web browser.

GDC08 Session – DataPlay: Living Games

Speaker: Justin Hall (CEO, GameLayers, Inc)

Many people spend hours each day surfing the web. What if each click registered a move in an ongoing massively multiplayer online game? What if you were playing without paying direct attention? You’d be playing a Passively Multiplayer Online Game!

Hall will discuss the design choices for indirect player action and how GameLayers parses web content into RPG elements, managing user-generated content where the whole internet is our playfield. And he’ll touch on other projects that are working with data-driven gameplay.

Attendees will learn ways in which the web and video games are converging, and opportunities for participating in this convergence. They will hear about the challenges of making a game based in a web browser extension, using the internet-at-large as content.

The Concept

We carry mobile phones or laptop computers. We work, play and relate with these devices, leaving rich data trails. What control do we have over these trails? What feedback do they give us?

Video games give players a rich, immediate sense of presence and control in game worlds. How can we take this rich presence and player control from video games and apply it to online life?

Passively Multiplayer Online Game ("PMOG") follows people as they surf the web, giving them experience points, levels, items and currency. PMOG layers social gaming on top of web browsing.

There is also a great related slide presentation from the Purdue Serious Games Research Forum, October 2007. Talk was on new literacies and games, with data shown from a conversation with Merci Hammon, designer of the Passively Multiplayer Online Game (PMOG).

Via: Passively Multiplayer Online Gaming (PMOG)

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