Apr 1, 2010

skinner xbox

Fascinating article in the humor publication Cracked about the psychology applied to gaming - Linkie. It's scary and hilarious at the same time. It's a summary of Microsoft's John Hopson's article in Gamasutra - Linkie.

As a bonus there is a great video of a dolphin playing a 'game' near the end.

BF Skinner knew. He called that training process "shaping." Little rewards, step by step, like links in a chain. In WoW you decide you want the super cool Tier 10 armor. You need five separate pieces. To get the full set, you need more than 400 Frost Emblems, which are earned a couple at a time, from certain enemies. Then you need to upgrade each piece of armor with Marks of Sanctification. Then again with Heroic Marks of Sanctification. To get all that you must re-run repetitive missions and sit, clicking your mouse, for days and days and days. Boobies be damned.  Once it gets to that point, can you even call that activity a "game" anymore? It's more like scratching a rash. And it gets worse...

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