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Video: Designing games to be impactful, not escapist entertainment

July 23, 2014 | By Staff

July 23, 2014 | By Staff
More: Console/PC, Serious, Design, Production, Video, Vault

"Our games are creating a rich, productive, happy world -- but only for players who know what they're doing."
- Game designer Jane McGonigal reminds developers that their games affect the lives of their players based on how the players approach them.

Author and game designer Jane McGonigal believes games change how we feel, think, act, and relate to each other, even when we aren't actively playing them. In a recent GDC talk she exhorted developers to take responsibility for how their games change people's lives, and how the design of a game -- sometimes more than the content of the game -- is what affects players the most.

During her hour-long talk McGonigal shared the interesting history of "escapist" entertainment and shared some concrete design advice for building games that positively impact the lives of their players, encouraging developers to capitalize on the opportunity to design for maximum, positive real-life impact.

It's an interesting talk, so we've gone ahead and embedded the free video of McGonigal's IGDA-sponsored session "THERE IS NO ESCAPE: Designing Games for Maximum Real-life Impact" above. You can also watch it here on the GDC Vault.

About the GDC Vault

In addition to this presentation, the GDC Vault offers numerous other free videos, audio recordings, and slides from many of the recent Game Developers Conference events, and the service offers even more members-only content for GDC Vault subscribers.

Those who purchased All Access passes to recent events like GDC, GDC Europe, and GDC Next already have full access to GDC Vault, and interested parties can apply for the individual subscription via a GDC Vault subscription page. Group subscriptions are also available: game-related schools and development studios who sign up for GDC Vault Studio Subscriptions can receive access for their entire office or company by contacting staff via the GDC Vault group subscription page. Finally, current subscribers with access issues can contact GDC Vault technical support.

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