Sunday, April 18, 2010

21st century is going to be about game design

Interview with Jesse Schell transcribed from CBC Spark

"The attention economy, in a world of information human attention is a scarce resource, and [game structure] is something advertisers might be interested in using.

I believe that one of the things that's really going to characterize the 21st century is this war for the attention of every single individual in humanity. We had this to some extent in the 20th century with radio, television, billboards and magazines competing for your attention. But that's going to be nothing! Now that everyone carries around a digital device that can interrupt them at anytime in their pocket, and now that the machine that you work on has things like facebook, which have the potential to send you emails ... everything is going to be trying to distract you constantly, and it's going to have much more ability to distract you, because these things are going to know what you're doing, where you are, and where you're going. The attention economy is very relevant here. And the advertisers are just now starting to wake up to the power of games.

I think for the 20th century the dominant means of building one's brand and capturing a person's imagination had to do with the graphic arts, it had to do with logo design, and designing brilliant commercials, and beautiful ads in magazines. In the 21st century, it's going to be much more about game design ... how can I incentivise you to focus on my product, pay attention to my product, tell your friends about my product, think about my product all the time. Game design is going to make that easy to do ...

Game designers are starting to feel conflicted because they realize "Wow, this is not about me trying to make a fun game, as much as it is about me trying to create situations where people feel unexpectedly compelled to pay money." So, there is a little bit of discomfort in this whole idea of putting people into a Skinner box as it were." -- Jesse Schell

The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses

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