The final day was short for me as I had a plane to catch (and more than 400 stairs to climb, because I wanted to see the Duomo before leaving Florence). I attended the first and only full CHI session on games. Three papers were presented, and especially the first two were pretty interesting. The first speaker had created Game Over! – a universally inaccessible game. It broke every rule of accessibility and would to some seem like a truly bad game. As a serious game though, with the goal of teaching game designers about accessibility, it was truly great. I need to try that one.
The next speaker had created a list of heuristics for game usability evaluation. I like expert evaluation, but Iâ€™m just not sure heuristics are really needed for an expert to evaluate. Also, after the speak Rolf Molich commented, that evaluators do not actually use heuristics the way they are intended to be used. They spot problems, and then try to match the problem with a heuristic – it is meant to be the other way around. I also liked the comment from Florian â€œFloydâ€ MÃ¼ller, that heuristics are better used by designers than evaluators. I agree with that.
The final paper was about social gaming on the Nintendo DS. The information from the study did not seem new to me though, so I found it kind of boring. There was one good idea though; provide a spectator mode for Nintendo DS games. That would be really cool, and it might actually be doable using the wireless connection to stream the action to the Wii.