bizplay 2017: one day full of gamification
On 28 September 2017, the gamification congress bizplay at the Tollhaus Karlsruhe took place for already the sixth time. This year’s motto of bizplay was “play moves everything”! Well, of course I’m pretty late with my article. However, I still wanted to give my personal outcomes and impressions of that great day.
bizplay: Play moves everything, stupidity doesn’t!
Curator Steffen P. Walz and moderator Valentina Hirsch opened the exciting day full of interesting talks and impressions. As Steffen P. Walz (Centre for Design Innovation, Gerenwa) explained, this was already the sixth bizplay in a row, which for him is “a bit of a record”. Steffen explained that:
- to learn
- to educate
- to let us question.
Games themselves carry something that we learn from!”
Moderator Valentina Hirsch (3sat) attended the bizplay for the first time, just like me. Just a few days after the Bundestag elections, she opened her welcome with the strong words:
“This congress is about business and gaming, it brings together people from different countries, it’s about tolerance, building bridges. Play moves everything, stupidity doesn’t!”
Peter Deterding at bizplay: Fun On First Click – Convert Users Into Passionate Customers With Onboarding
The Keynote Speaker Peter Deterding held a quite interesting and entertaining talk about how to bring people on board.
He began with a story about seniors who were interviewed in design workshops concerning silver phones. It turned out they hated the phones! They wanted normal phones with lots of buttons and features. The buttons were not the problem, but the moment of unboxing and learning how to set up and use the smart phone. The solution was an interactive book with explanations, with this design, it was possible to bring the people on board.
I think the “Out of the box – book” is so cool, it would be perfect for my mother. But watch for yourself!
Peter laid out that all companies that that make any kind of product have the same problems: Their customers need to find out how to use the product. In this so called “on boarding process” the companies need to bring the customers on board. However, about 50 % of all customers don’t visit a website a second time, which why it’s important for companies to invest in this on boarding process.
“Make me wow!”
The on boarding process in games, it’s a heavy competition factor, the first few clicks decide if you like a game or not. Particularly casual games have figured out how to bring their product to the users.
The first impression counts: The first time somebody encounters your product you should tell the people, why they should use you and not somebody else! You should explain the key tasks of the game in very limited words.
“I want something that enables me to do the task.
Give me the experience as fast as possible.
Make me wow!”
According to Peter, you should “minimize the time to wow”. There shouldn’t be long pages of long marketing speech, just play the game!
There are lots of products with walls of text. But they should show it to you! For example with help of a guided first run through an app, like this, the customer can be guided step by step through the process. One step at a time, do it a couple of times, then you reach the next step.
In the best case, it’s learning by doing, without any text. It’s a guiding progress with feedback: What’s next? Good examples of companies who do so are e.g. optimizely, tumblr or duolingo.
Mark Moebius at bizplay: You are Music! Interactive sound control & composition for performance, club event, dance karaoke, therapy & fitness
Mark Moebius, CEO of Nagual Sounds, really astonished me: In his keynote he demonstrated an app with which you can create music only by movement!
The interactive sound control of the software can be used
- at club events
- as a motivation to dance/ as dance karaoke
- for therapy & fitness
- with a learning / education aspect.
With help of the app you can produce different interactive pieces of music which can be sensory controlled. The idea is to convert energetic connection, like this you learn to listen to your body, which can be applied at therapy and fitness. Nagual Sounds developed for example an app for a Parkinson Clinic.
Mark explained that the algorithmic requirements demand repeatedly different steps, this way the dancer learns something new. However, the tempo stays the same as you need a regular beat for orientation.
So, with new technology you can create music only by combining movement. Concluding Mark said:
“Creativity is not only technology, but how it is applied.”
Cornelsen Verlag at bizplay: Virtual Reality in the classroom & gamification in education
Gamification has also penetrated the fields of education and learning. At bizplay, Katja Schwaninger and Holger Tuletz from the Cornelsen Verlag (German publishing house for school material) have talked about their test run of applying gamification within the fields of education.
With help of virtual reality created an authentic learning environment: A journey into unattainable worlds for the students. The idea was to make the learning context more emotional!
For the test run, Cornelsen cooperated with schools: They created an interactive trip through the intestine, which is great for VR as it’s an abstract, invisible process. Students often get lost as the process is too dry and has too many technical terms.
For the digestion game, a cooperative approach was used: Respectively, two students worked together, one has VR glasses, the other one had a tablet. The student with the VR glasses was a sandwich and wandered through the digestive tract, the other one had to find the organs involved in the digestive tract, the hot spots. If found, they were activated and questions on the tablet had to be answered in order to activate the further process.
The VR game filled out four lessons. According to the evaluation of this test, the students were totally motivated and liked to come into biology class. They loved the holistic and playful experience as well as working in a team. Also worth mentioning is the interaction between VR (being totally involved) and old material: The teacher showed with help of the body torso the length of the intestine.
The result of the test was: VR helps with the spatial/ technical understanding, with the understanding which organs are involved. However, VR has no added value for factual knowledge, it didn’t help the students with understanding the content.
Tobias Frisch (Fizbin): Gamification & Culture – Games as Medium of Public Culture
Tobias Frisch, Executive Producer at Studio Fizbin, gave a very interesting lecture on “Games as a medium of public culture”. As I listened enthusiastically to the very stirring lecture, I hardly made any notes. I am therefore very pleased that Tobias sent me a summary of his presentation. You can read it here, however, it’s in German.
My personal conclusion of the bizplay 2017
I’m not a gamer myself, but recently I’ve already noticed the increasing importance of gamification, especially virtual reality, at several events. Nevertheless, bizplay was also very interesting and exciting for me as an “outsider”. Again and again I am amazed at such events what kinds of things are made possible in the meantime!
Music that is created by your own movement, games are integrated in museums, you could apply gamification within education, etc., etc. …
Also, there were plenty of networking opportunities between and after the talks. It was amazing how many international attendants especially came for this event to Karlsruhe. So, all in all it was a very inspiring day with many interesting key notes and nice conversations.
Images: © Johanna Wies
The pictures of the slides are of course under the copyright of the respective speakers.