The Games Reading Group will continue in the 2016/17 academic year. Our first meeting is on Thursday, December 8th from 13:00 to 14:00. As usual, we will explore topics around Human-Computer Interaction, Games Studies, and wider Games Research.

If you are a (staff or student member) of the University and would like to know more and/or join the group, please contact Kathrin Gerling.

We’re happy to announce that the Lincoln Games Lab is co-organizing a workshop at the first joint conference of DiGRA and FDG focusing on digital games for older adults. The workshop will address issues around game development for older audiences:

Previous assessments of digital games for the older adult market have focused on their use as a tool to promote aspects of well-being – e.g., fostering social interaction and providing cognitive and physical stimulation. This perspective suggests that the primary means of these games are to encourage older adults to better themselves, which introduces an overly functionalist perspective on play.

In this workshop, we aim to shift this perspectives on games for older adults by highlighting the hedonic and eudaimonic value that they offer. To do so, we will explore challenges and opportunities in the design and development of market-specific games to create empowering and engaging experiences.

The conference takes place in Dundee, Scotland; the workshop will run on Monday, August 1st 2016. For more information including submission details, please visit the workshop website.

We are pleased to announce that Dr. Joe Marshall, Senior Research Fellow at the University of Nottingham, will be visiting us to give a research seminar on Interpersonal Touch in Gaming.

The seminar takes place on Wednesday, February 10th, 13:30 in room MC 3107. Seating is limited – please email Kathrin Gerling (kgerling at lincoln dot ac dot uk) if you would like to attend.

Abstract

Touch between people is a key way in which we communicate socially, from the early bonds developed by caring touch between parent and child, to the many adult uses of touch to communicate friendship, sexual attraction, violent aggression or physical competition. Touch is also a part of many sports and games, such as rugby, martial arts and Twister. In children vigorous physical contact play serves both long-term functions in the development of cognition, emotional coding and fighting skills, plus more immediate functions  relating to strength and endurance training & social dominance.

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The School of Computer Science at the University of Lincoln will be hosting a site for the 2016 Global Game Jam, which takes place from January 29th to January 31st. If you’re looking to have a go at developing a full game in just a weekend – why not join us?

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“Come along to the University of Lincoln site for the biggest international game jam of the year! This 48 hour Game Jam pits developers across the globe against each other in a battle to make the best game they can.

Programmers, artists of all types, sound designers, even writers of ALL abilities are welcome to come along and work on something fantastic. Even if you’ve never written a line of code before, or have never drawn anything, we still want you to come on down and have a go! 48 hours is a long time, so why not learn something new?”

Attending the event is free, but you will need to book a ticket via Eventbrite. More information on the Lincoln site is also available via facebook.

We’re happy to share that we’ve had two full papers conditionally accepted to CHI 2016!

Gerling, K., Hicks, K., Kalyn, M., Evans, A., and Linehan, C. Designing Movement-based Play With Young People Using Powered Wheelchairs. Conditionally accepted to CHI 2016, full paper.

Smeddinck, J., Mandryk, R., Birk, M., Gerling, K., Barsilowski, D., and Malaka, R. How to Present Game Difficulty Choices? Exploring the Impact on Player Experience. Conditionally accepted to CHI 2016, full paper.

The first paper is the result of a year-long research project funded by the University of Lincoln Research Investment Fund that was carried out together with St. Francis School in Lincoln, and looked into making movement-based play accessible for young people who use powered wheelchairs. The second paper was co-authored with collaborators at the University of Bremen, Germany, and University of Saskatchewan, Canada, and it explores how player perceive different options to adjust game difficulty.

We look forward to seeing you in San Jose!