GDC 2011: Game Deisgn Challenge

Jason Rohrer, John Romero, Jenova Chen

-          Introduction:
o   Contestants receive concept 1-2 months before GDC
o   Only real limitation is that it h as to be for tech that currently exists
o   Topic: Line have been drawn between gamification and religion: create a game that in some way can be a religion in its practice and how it operates
-          Jason Rohrer
o   Old purpose of religion was to explain the world
o   Science took over the explanations of most physical mysteries, so religion turned inwards
o   Thinking about his grandfather
§  He was the mayor of a town which I-77 was supposed to cut through, but he pushed back and to this day, I-77 makes this crazy curve around the town
§  This is his grandfather’s legacy
§  Through stories, he is less of a man, more of an idea of a man
o   The idea of legacy and shrines to the past
§  Think about Stonehenge – we become like gods to those who come after them
o   Rough idea:
§  1 person in the world plays the game at a time, then passes it on
§  This creates a predecessor relationship
§  In most games, the start state you get is THE start state – but gets more interesting when your start state is someone else’s end state
§  In most games, pursuing a goal modifies the terrain
§  Tried to come up with a game where the pursuit of a goal wouldn’t ruin the game for those who play it afterwards.
§  Got caught in the gravity of one game: Minecraft (so it’s a mod)
o   Rules
§  You get the ONE USB stick (this is the arc of the covenant)
§  Install Minecraft from this stick
§  You play the game until you die exactly once
·         You cannot leave signs with text
·         Suicide is permissible
§  Quit to menu, let it save, pass it on
§  Never discuss what you saw or did with anyone, never play it again
o   Player One
§  Talked for hours with his son to come up with game one
§  Had grand plans. ..but ended up dying the most heartbreaking and painful death in a game ever
-          John Romero
o   What is religion? Deity, worshippers, devotion
§  Religious wars were like games – the crusades
o   Rules
§  Created Twitter user @God6502
§  Chose person to be @Messiah6502
§  In real time (at the event) the first 12 that follow the Messiah will become apostles
§  The apostles have 2 min to find as many followers as possible
§  The winner is the apostle that has the most followers that contain miracles (whole pad to sticky paper)
-          Jenova Chen
o   From China, atheist J
o   Eastern religions are all about how to live life (Taoism, Confucianism)
o   Progression of “religions”
§  Socialism
§  Developmentalism
§  Consumerism
-          Religion Needs to address: fear of death, and lack of purpose
o   Needs to address these two main things
o   Spread ideas to others
-          Religion needs to address purpose of life
o   Something intuitive, survive the test of time
o   Primitive yet profound
o   Rights of life: born, growth, propagate
o   Propagation is the most fun part
o   Propagation of idea! Good purpose for life
-          Goals:
o   Dogma: promote anything which enhances the propagation of ideas
o   Create flow of ideas
o   Protected rights and fairness important (so anti-monopoly)
-          TED (http://www.ted.com/)
o   This is a good example of the spread of ideas
o   But TED has a very passive style
o   “Ideas worth spreading” is a very passive slogan
o   Just database
-          Religion Design:
o   Take TED and make it better!
o   Make it more active
o   New slogan: “influence with ideas”
o   Make spreading of ideas into flow experience
o   There aren’t even view counts on the TED website – add them
o   In addition to the view count, say if you were inspired by the video
o   Give TED video posters profile sites (more like Facebook or Twitter)
o   Like Chinese Twitter – show you how many people are now following (new followers)
o   Needs feedback loop
§  Promote ideas to win badges, then you get more opportunities for promotion (game aspect)
o   “Most influential people of the year” based on TED sites – who has the biggest following
o   Called “Propagationism”

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