Why Serious Games differ to elearning; it’s obvious no?
May 18, 2012 7 Comments
Regardless of the obvious point; of fun, delivery, platform, graphics, etc etc, there is so much more to a serious game experience than there is to an elearning piece.
Where elearning is a delivery platform for information and each screen is weighted pretty much equally with the goal of imparting certain information and then ‘assessing’ that information, not every action or event within a game is about increasing/assessing the skill level of the user. Yes that’s the ultimate target but there is so much more going on in a game than information presentation.
When we consider engagement as one of our main arguments for serious games we must consider how we engage the users. We’ve pointed out many times on this blog before that graphics do not equal engagement. Just by throwing content into a shiny new environment will not engage the audience. Pacing is part of the engagement process; as this video from Extra Credits will show you. However what we come up against many times during the design phase is a resistance to using any time at all within the game for narrative development, or building up the tension; there is less and less room for engagement.
We understand that time is money and ROI must be calculated on all training (especially in these tough times) but by just focusing on what you can cram into a serious game, by analysing every step, every sentence, you are missing out on the value they can offer your organisation. With correct pacing, and using serious games to their greatest extent, we can improve on engagement, interest in the content and meet our real goal of creating more successful learners.