Sunday, October 03, 2004

Project Post #2

Earlier I was rethinking the location of my game. I was testing the game to the chart of scale and duration that was on the board in class when I realized that by raising the the scale of players of the game, I would need to move the location. I started to become comfortable with the changes forced on my game by it becoming a massively mulitiplayer warehouse party instead of a moderatley sized house party. Although I can't necessarily afford to booze up a huge crowd of people just the thought of thinking bigger started to get my brain working again. I came up with a new location that would allow for a significant change to the atmosphere of the party, create a larger scale of playersto the game, and make for a longer duration. I decided, even though it would require some more planning and coordination, I want the party to happen at my friends warehouse/home in the financial district. I realized that by moving it there I wouldn't have to worry about how long the party goes or how big it gets. I also realized that it would make room for a very essential party element, DJ's and a dancefloor!!!! (I will go into how I am going to work them into the game later)

I also thought about a players required investment in my game. I thought about what someone has to invest into a party when they go to one. A party goer always has a certain amount of personal investment in going to a group gathering. He/She always has a certain amount of personal investment in either the people he/she is going to meet and the impression that he/she is going to make on them. The unpredictability of who is going to be at a party and what is going to be going on there means you have to invest a certain amount of personal saftey and comfort into your evening (and I know I keep mentioning the eveining as if all parties happen during the night but I am aware of all of the awsome parties I have been to in the daytime they just are a lot less common). A party can affect you for a long time. You could meet someone at a party that will be with you for the rest of your life. You could go home with someone who turned out to be your murderer, that would definitley be a form of an infinite persistent party. Or, you could go to a party, it could totally blow, and you could end up leaving in a couple of minutes. Frankly you could have the intentions of going to a party and trying to find it all night and then never getting there. I digress. I was trying to think about how I could add some persistence to my game. I was thinking that the game could end up online. The scores and names of those with them could end up online. I was also thinking maybe taking a picture of everyone who entered the party and posting that online with their scores/outcome so that other players could, if they didn't catch their name during the game, could put the face to the name online. I was thinking of how a payoff to high enough scorers of the game could get name and phone numbers to anyone from the party (now that would involve some personal investment and impact). Maybe the game could continue online by allowing players to comment to each other by having the game site be a livejournal or blog. This could be a way for people to make contact with people from the game and keep whatever relationship they made at the party going, possibly letting the game have a bigger impact on their lives then just a hangover.


Blogger Signor Farinelli said...

Hi, Jacob. I'm not exactly sure what you're getting at, but I would like to comment that being online and being at a party are such different activities that I would like to see what you come up with. I guess some people might see chat rooms as virtual parties, but if that's the case, then they are parties that really suck. Imagine a party where nobody uses his or her real name, everyone speaks in one or two-word phrases composed entirely of jargon, and everyone is blindfolded. Hmm. Sounds like a South of Market event I was at recently.

October 3, 2004 at 10:55 PM  
Blogger Jane said...

I admire your ambition and willingness to take on the added complications of scaling a game for massively multiplayer play!

Roger makes a good point about the very different social interactions of being online vs. at a party, and a clever suggestion about importing the norms of online play to real world space (That would be a cool and interesting thing to try!) But I think what you're getting at here Jacob is the opposite direction of arrow of influence... that you would allow the party to transition to online space in an optional way (players don't HAVE to keep playing or paying attention to the online space), and I think that is a very interesting experiment: the ongoing life of a party game, as played out on livejournal... What I'm interested in seeing is if you could develop a set of game instructions or guidelines that could be deployed at your friend's warehouse as well as at other large-scale parties... that could exist as a tool for other party-throwers. Because while one-time only games are interesting, it would be nice for others to benefit from your design and interesting for you to see it deployed in other settings, no? Also, begin thinking about how you would playtest outside of that particular setting... When we go over core mechanic later this week, that should help you devise a smaller-scale playtest.

October 4, 2004 at 9:41 AM  

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