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My room mate and I are both Master Students at Full Sail University for Game Design. When I got there I heard rumors of a club but nothing was happening with it. Well we decided to take it and revive it, as it was once an awesome networking opportunity.

Well, now here we are 3 months later: http://www.fullsailblog.com/events-and-news/student-news/student-club-spotlight-game-production-club

Booyah!

-Jeremy Fountaine

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Hello again bog,

It’s been a while since my last post, but I have been up to a lot lately.

First off, my Thesis draft is complete, so of course I always have a lot to talk about in terms of social issues in games.

Second, I finally got my website up and running at http://www.jfountaine.com though I am still getting some of my previous work up there.

I also bought my tickets and got my arrangements set for GDC Online, really looking forward to a couple of talks that are going on there. A lot about narratives and MMO communities, hoping to speak to some more experienced individuals about my ideas and see what they think.

Also since starting the Game Production Club at Full Sail I’ve been working on a lot of small projects to get producers and developers to come in and speak to students about their experiences, as well as provide advice on how to get into the industry, that has been fun. We have a producer from Germany Skyping in next week, I am looking forward to that, we are completely revamping the way the club works and making it more awesome than ever before.

Also I am organizing a huge event at Full Sail for the Extra-Life campaign to raise money for Children’s Hospitals if any of you kind onlookers would like to help us out, my personal goal is $200 since I am not sure what to expect, but out team is shooting to raise $5,000, the link to donate is: http://www.extra-life.org/participant/36909

It’s an awesome cause so I am looking to see what the turnout I get is.

Any how Ill have some more relevant posts in a couple weeks either at GDC or after GDC, depending on how busy I am.

P.S. If you are going to GDC and wanna meet up, feel free to contact me through my website 🙂

 

-J

 

 

Aggression in video games, where to start…

Recently I have discovered some studies discussing co-op in violent video games and their affects on aggressive behaviors. A popular study that have been conducted multiple times before is to have people play certain games, one group typically plays a violent game and the other group plays a nonviolent game, and then they give the people 2 letters and ask them to finish the word. If they finish the word with something associated with anger or violence (KI – Kill, etc.) it generally tells us that they are in a more violent or aggressive mindset.

The studies I found involved cooperative game play and found that people who played violent co-op games (Halo and Halo 2 were used) we found to be friendlier or more cooperative with other players, as opposed to the players who played the single player campaigns of the games, or played strictly single player games.

That’s cool an all, but aren’t those games the ones we typically see issues with when it comes to players being dicks to one another?

I suppose if a group of people who know each other, or who are in the same room are tasked with playing a game cooperatively they will be nicer to each other.

That’s not the way the real world works. Games like Halo and Call of Duty have team multiplayer, they have co-op, however, in the online multiplayer they still pit players against each other as individuals. People need to get the highest kill count, or “that asshole stole my kill!”. Granted, teams that communicate, and work well together, and focus on success as a team tend to perform better and also tend to play better with others, but those aren’t the people we need to worry about.

So, interesting study, but I do take some issue with it, what is important to me is that people are looking into it and that there are results.

On that note, I feel like games like Portal 2 and Mass Effect 3 do a wonderful job of getting gamers to work together. Portal puts people in a position where they must depend on each other to proceed through the level. Mass effect puts players up against a common AI foe, although there is the sense of personal achievement.

When it comes to aggression in games, and influencing player behavior the way information is delivered can greatly affect the way people react to games. Positive reinforcement in games will do wonders to improve player relations. Studies have shown with children that by changing the way in which you present information will change how it is perceived. For example “If you don’t clean your room you won’t get ice cream” versus “If you clean your room I’ll give you ice cream”.

By taking punishment out of the equation the child is more likely to clean their room and do it without arguing. Small things similar to that, rewarding good behavior, rather than threatening punishment upon good behavior might help with the way people interact in online video games. Granted, I discussed how I approve of ArenaNets’ actions with the player bans, and I still stand by them. To some extent if we as an industry are going to start expecting people to act a certain way online, we need to begin enforcing it, although punishment is fairly ineffective without rewards. That is to say, we need to reward good behavior if we are going to punish bad behavior.

Simple, right?

 

J

Alright, so I am a graduate student working on a thesis trying to solve and issue with the way women (among other minority groups) are treated in online social games. From the common sense realm, I want more people to feel comfortable playing games online (both MMOs and Shooters) without the fear of being harassed. From a business perspective, I want more people to feel comfortable playing video games, so the industry can sell more video games.

Some of you may be thinking “But Jeremy, that’s not the issue with games!” and to you I say “Nay!”

Handling diversity in the gaming industry and a issue that we have been hiding under the rug for quite some time. It is in part because people don’t know how to deal with it, hell, it’s an issue beyond the game industry that people don’t know how to deal with. There are a few outspoken folks in the game industry who understand these issues and want it to be heard, so I am here to help those people be hear, as well as deliver my two cents.

I’ve been catching a lot of flak about gender not really being an issue in gaming, but the people that say that just aren’t looking for it or are looking away from it. In my research I look into various ways of improving diversity awareness, and in addition to doing my research I will share this information with anyone who should stumble upon my blog. So strap in, enjoy, and let me enlighten you! 🙂

 

J

Hello to everyone. Welcome to the first blog I have written since middle school, oh, so many years ago. For now I will just introduce myself.

My name is Jeremy Fountaine, I am a graduate student in Full Sail University’s Masters of Game Design degree program.

I want to make video games, I have loves games since I am a kid and I still do love games almost indiscriminately.

I am writing a Thesis about finding condition elements to include in video game content that will provide players with a sort of subconscious awareness of their actions and allow player to police themselves when interacting with other people in social games, focusing on interaction with female gamers.

Every week I am going to try to write about something recent in the industry, whether its a game review of something I decided to try, a new article I feel I can bring more attention or insight into, or something I experienced. 

I will limit my posts to 500 words or less, for those of us who have a bit of Browser ADD.

 

I like playing games, if you want to play with me sometime, shoot me a message, if you think there is a game I should play, shoot me message. Comment freely, I welcome debate.

 J