I’ve mentioned elsewhere in the course that I am an avid video game player, so I wanted to see how well I could use the LEML framework to describe an “Introduction” or “First Level” of a video game wherein the game begins to teach the player how the game works, and how to play the game.
I chose the Pokemon video games for this model. While there are some variations between the introduction/first level of the various Pokemon video games, those variations are slight and I did not feel as if they were significant enough to focus on one individual game. Typically there is a “formal” lecture where a Pokemon Professor explains what Pokemon are and how they fit into the world, then the player wanders around for a bit, gets to choose their first Pokemon, and the first battle of the game ensues. Here’s the final model I settled upon (actually modified from the model I submitted).
As with my first, Step-by-Step challenge, I started by adding the various building blocks I would need. In this case an information block, a practice block, a feedback block, and an evidence block. Single-player games don’t really create much dialogue among peers. Once I had my blocks, my biggest challenge was adding context. While video games are a virtual environment, it was hard to classify some of the context as “classroom” “asynchronous online” “synchronous online” or “experiential”.
Technically, I feel like all video game learning is experiential due to the fact that users must experience and play a game in order to learn it. However, I wanted to be able to distinguish between when a game gives a player formal information and when a game expects a player to learn through doing. So for my submitted LEM, I modified how I used the “classroom” context to simply indicate a formal learning context. However, after further thinking I have edited the model. In the model depicted aboveI use the “online synchronous” context for this, and perhaps re-named it the “virtual synchronous” context. Then I used the “experiential” context to denote when the game is asking the player to learn by doing.
All in all I was surprised at how adaptable the LEML tools could be for my chosen topic. However when working this many degrees away from a formal education design, there are blocks I would add in the future to describe video game design. For example, since single-player games often ask for certain types of user input, I think a “user input” block would be valuable. In the model above, I might have added a “user input” block between my information and practice blocks, denoting that a user must engage the system – choose their first Pokemon – between the lecture and first battle. If you have an idea for using the existing LEML blocks to show this – please let me know if the comments!
Edit: While thinking through my LEM Presentation, I added one more edit to my LEM. Here’s the final version:
What’s different is the addition of the Dialog box, which for the video game design I have adapted to mean system dialog that the user interfaces with rather than peer dialog.