Thursday, 17 November 2011

Nuggets of Wisdom: Power vs Curiosity

The combined power of the nifty iPad app Instapaper and an hour-long commute has helped me catch up on some bookmarked game design articles I had been intending to read for a while.

As I consume them I tend to pick out little nuggets of wisdom which I feel compelled to share. This may or may not become a regular feature, who knows?

I'll let the nuggets speak for themselves (except my bold highlights) and simply provide a link to the full article for those interested in further reading.
The intrinsic motivators of power and curiosity are at odds with each other. The more you are motivated by curiosity, the stronger the desire to test your new understanding becomes. And against increasingly difficult challenges, the more you fail, the more motivated you become to switch over to an learning playstyle to build your skills up. As this pendulum of motivation swings back and forth, it can be very stressful and dangerous to fun if the user is significantly restricted from freely moving between these motivations. Being forced to learn when one expects to flex or being prevented from learning when one desires to understand can cause players to lose motivation and therefore lose play and fun.
Source: Critical-Gaming Network: The Zero-Sum Funomaly pt. 7
Part 1 in the Zero-Sum Funomaly series is here.

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