Game Design Project

This project will provide you with the opportunity to create a videogame that uses procedural rhetoric to intervene in a controversial topic. In groups, you will create a game that makes an argument about one of the chapters in Blown to Bits. You will also present your game to the class, explaining your group's issue and how your game sheds light on that issue.

You will use the programming language Scratch to create a game that makes a procedural argument. The primary requirement is that the game uses procedural rhetoric to address the issue in your group's assigned chapter. This may require that you research the issue beyond what's provided in Blown to Bits. You should become experts on your chapter, and you should be able to answer questions about why the issue is of importance.

You will have ample class time to learn Scratch during workshops (and during CS 202) and to work with your group members to build your game. You will also have opportunities to test your games by having classmates outside of your group play versions of your game. Note that there are due dates for versions of the game. While there are not specific benchmarks for these versions, each version must be a playable version of the game. For instance, while version 1.0 will not incorporate all features and may only be a rough sketch of what you have planned, it must be a playable game.

Throughout the game design process, you will also be crafting a 15-minute presentation about your game. You will be gathering information for the presentation and planning out how you will explain your game to the class. Early stages of this planning may be notes and an outline, but it should be progressing toward a 15-minute presentation that you will deliver on November 5.

Your group's presentation will explain the context of your game, the issue your game addresses, and the procedural arguments that your game makes. You may use any presentation software, but you should plan to incorporate visuals. All members of the group must speak during the final presentation, and you should be prepared to answer questions (as audience members for other group presentations, you should be also be prepared to ask questions).

During your work on this project, you must meet with the consultants at DesignLab at least twice. The consultants at DesignLab can help you with both your game and your presentation by offering advice about how to best present your argument or explain your issue. Note that DesignLab is not a "help desk" and is not focused on providing answers to questions about software (these kinds of questions should be directed toward me and Deidre). Instead, DesignLab consultants are available to help you with creative development and planning.

When providing feedback, Deidre and I will be looking for the following:

  • Does your game make an effective and coherent procedural argument about your issue?
  • Does your game provide sufficient context for the issue?
  • Does your project demonstrate an understanding of the class readings and an application of their terms and concepts? You should be applying what you've learned in the Bogost readings and in our discussions about other games.
  • Has your group effectively managed the project, allowing all group members to take part in all phases (research, writing, coding, testing, etc)?
  • Has your group incorporated feedback from others in the class?
  • Is your project free from grammatical errors and generally well written?
  • Does your presentation explain your issue?
  • Does your presentation provide sufficient context for someone who is not familiar with the issue or with your game?
  • Does your presentation explain your game's procedural argument?
  • Do all members of the group speak during the presentation?
  • Does your presentation incorporate visuals in a way that helps the audience?
  • Was your group prepared to answer questions about your issue and your game?
  • Is your presentation free from grammatical errors and generally well written?

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