{ Games :: Interactive Design }

September 2015 :: Click Image to View
Forgotten Island
About Arena
Arena is an exploration of diegetic, informal learning games. In Arena, players find themselves dropped into a hostile, futuristic world, forced to contend with both enemies and a local language they don't understand. Players learn Spanish through micro-tasks framed as conversations with non-player characters (NPCs). In addition, reinforcement learning mechanics and reward systems motivate players to solve puzzles, accomplish goals, and defeat enemies as they explore. Arena is a complex design research project developed by me and my students at Ithaca College. The artwork shown here is my own.

Arena Arena

Arena is developed using the Phaser JavaScript game engine. It is a collaborative project between me and my students at Ithaca College. Though much of my time is focused on research publication, I have also had a strong hand in the details of programming, art, and design for this project.

The Arena project is producing good results, with several successful publications, including in the International Journal of Designs for Learning, the 2016 iConference, and CHIPlay 2017 in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Our poster paper about Arena in the 2016 iConference, co-authored with several of my undergraduate students, was honored with a best poster award.

You can learn more about my research or read some of the papers on the research page. You can also play a few levels of Arena online.