Everyday gameplay was already revolutionized by the introduction of the Wii, and in the last year, the rapid growth of multi-touch platforms, and the introduction of the Sony Move and the Xbox Kinect, have brought movement-based games into the limelight as a growing market opportunity. Yet, there is little or no information circulating for developers and designers about how best to design movement-based mechanics. Each team goes through expensive trial and error, as they work to adapt existing properties and genres and/or to invent new ones. There is a great need for a book that brings together what is already known about movement design, both in general, and for the specific target platforms, to help reduce risk and increase the likelihood of successful design.
The book will include interviews with developers who have faced the challenges outlined in the book, and who have developed commercially successful and award winning titles.
The companion web site will include video clips of play of the movement game examples from the book, to better illustrate the concepts.
--Author, Katherine Isbister is uniquely qualified to write this book. She studies movement mechanics and their effects on players in her lab, presents this work at GDC and Human Computer Interaction conferences. Her lab's work has been featured in Wired.com and National Public Radio's Science Friday show.
--No books available yet on movement-based games. We will be first to market on this growing and important emerging category of games.
--Practical advice for designers on what work well in movement game design, based on real-world social science research and lab work. The book demonstrates a perfect mix of lab tested, practical advice, combined with case studies across many genres and platforms.
--Companion web site offers video clips of play of the movement game examples from the book, to better illustrate the concepts.
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Associate Professor, Department of Language, Literature and Communication, RPI; Director of the Games Research Lab, RPI; Chair of the MS in HCI Program, RPI. Katherine is Director of the Games Research Lab at Rensselaer (RPI), where she has worked to build an undergraduate major in game design, as well as a robust program of games-related research. She is also the Chair of the MS in HCI at RPI, which she helped to redesign to address current challenges facing HCI practitioners, such as the design of games and other social and leisure applications. Katherine is a former MK Game author, having written: Better Game Characters by Design: A Psychological Approach, which was nominated for a Game Developer Magazine Front Line award in 2006. She has published work in a wide variety of venues, and has given invited talks at research and academic venues including Sony research labs in Japan, Banff Centre in Canada, IBM, the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, and others. The Games Research Lab at RPI has cutting-edge facilities for user studies, and Isbister has used the lab to research innovative methods in user testing (e.g. the Sensual Evaluation Instrument - a project nominated for Best Paper award at the CHI conference in 2006).
Isbister has worked in both research and commercial settings on HCI and usability aspects of games and other products. This background, combined with strong connections to game industry practitioners, makes her well suited to put together an edited volume on games usability that is both rigorous and useful to developers in their everyday work.
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