Wednesday, May 30, 2007

I recently had a chance to meet with and listen to University of Calgary librarians, Chris Thomas and Jerremie Clyde, who presented their ongoing work and research into game-based learning at the University of Waterloo. For their game "Hard Play" they have selected the game engine from HalfLife 2 to keep it engaging and immersive. Chris and Thomas emphasized the importance of first looking at game-play when building a game. The next important aspect should be the narrative. Once these elements have been established, learning goals can be looked at. It has to be fun first if it is to work at all. The modding community surrounding HalfLife is quite substantial and this has been a big help for Chris & Jerremie. They have developed various rooms thus far that look eerily similar to their library in a not-so-distant dystopic future. When staff were shown the game screenshots they immediatley recognized various spaces in the library. Chris & Jerremie are tapping into the web 2.0 principle by sharing all that they learn as they continue to build "Hard Play". I'm looking forward to watching it progress. Follow along with them here:

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