sexta-feira, 28 de março de 2014

Types of failure in games

Recently, I finished the awesome book by Jesper Juul named “The Art of Failure”. This book is a great inspiration for game designers, game researchers and game lovers of all platforms. The idea about the “the pain of playing video games” gives us a new view on failure and on how to create entertainment from it (which is considered a bad thing in the real world).

There are two details I want to bring into this discussion right now: the first one is about the two types of failure. As Jull says (2013, p.25) we can find the “real failure” and the “fictional failure”: the “real failure occurs when a player invests time into playing a game and fails” and the “fictional failure is what befalls the character(s) in the fictional game world” *SPOILER ALERT* (Like in Red Dead Redemption. You need to die with John Marston to continue the narrative).

The second point to highlight is about the idea that we are “emotionally affected by games, and we are aware of this before we start playing” (JUUL, 2013, p.56). This means that games arouse feelings in players and can create a strange connection during the gaming experience working with feelings like happiness, anger, frustration, fear etc. To understand the interface between the game and the player’s emotions is a great step to create new kinds of gaming experiences. Maybe a new door to be opened to new sensations inside the ludic universe.


JUUL, Jesper. The Art of Failure: an essay on the pain of playing video games. Cambridge/London: MIT Press, 2013.

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