Reality is Broken

1.) “The real world doesn’t offer up as easily the carefully designed pleasures, the thrilling challenges, and the powerful social bonding afforded by virtual environments. Reality doesn’t motivate us as effectively. Reality isn’t engineered to maximize our potential. Reality wasn’t designed from the bottom up to make us happy” (Page 3). Games offer players to escape reality and be the person they want to be/ that can make them happiest. Wether it’s being the hero that defeats the villains and saves the day, or being Hans Solo in Lego StarWars- players have the opportunity to feel better than they can in their real lives.

2.) According to McGonigal, there are four elements that compose a game: 1.) “The goal is the specific outcomes that players will work to achieve. The goal provides players with a sense of purpose.” (Page 21) 2.) “The rules place limitations on how players can achieve the goal. They unleash creativity and foster strategic thinking.” (Page 21) 3.) “The feedback system tells players how close they are to achieving the goal. ..it provides motivation to keep playing.” (Page 21) 4.) “Finally, voluntary participation requires that everyone who is playing the game knowingly and willingly accepts the goal, the rules, and the feedback.” (page 21) Each of the four elements build on one another to form the whole purpose of playing games. You have to have a goal because otherwise what would be the point of playing, you have to have rules because then the game would have no structure, you have to have feedback in order to know that you are doing what you have to do to achieve the goal, and you have to have knowingness in order to have “common ground for multiple players to play together.” (page 21)

3.) McGonigal says “…there is virtually nothing as engaging as this state of working at the very limits of your ability- or what both game designers and psychologists call ‘flow’. When you are in a state of flow, you want to stay there: both quitting and winning are equally unsatisfying outcomes.” (Page 24) Flow is something that players in games ad people in real life hope to achieve constantly. “Fiero is the Italian word for ‘pride’, and it’s been adopted by game designers to describe an emotional high we don’t have a good word for in English. Fiero is what we feel after we triumph over adversity.” (page 33) McGonigal claims that everyone experiences fiero, and everyone reacts to it in the same way, therefore it applies to real life and in games. Fiero is the feeling you get when you strive to achieve a challenge, such as defeating the villain in a game, or trying to get good grades throughout school.

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