Thursday, June 4, 2009

Class 8: How it all comes together


Today you hopefully saw how all the individual pieces of the "exertion game puzzle" can come together: each conceptual theory piece you were introduced along the way formed the larger puzzle of what it means to design such exertion games.

And on this journey, you might have gained some insights on presentation skills, teamwork, arguing, discussing, etc.

I hope this was all useful.

Powerpoint slide of your project by midnight!
Enter project URLs into blog
Enter comments on blog before next Thursday
Enter grades before next Thursday
Next Thursday: in Stefan’s office: 4.30-7.30: feedback
1 week later: grades

For your comments below, here is a suggestion:

You all seemed to like the Nike+, and there was a good question from Michele what aspect of it is a game. Now think of all the concepts on the whiteboard: using any of these concepts, how could Nike+ be improved, and why?

Thanks again for a great opportunity to interact with your bright minds.



  1. Code+, a game where you lines of code are monitored by your ipod, and you have boost songs? Ways to be more productive with music?

    Free idea, take it and run with it...

  2. I had some more thoughts about what you have told me yesterday:

    Hearing about Jumpshock and Virtual Limit makes me believe that "physical pain" associated with "thrill" should also belong onto the whiteboard mindmap we created. Thanks for that.

    To the nike+ vs fish'n'steps presentation:
    You made some good points that made me think what it is these 2 systems offer that has not been done before; I mean we have been walking and running fine without technology before. I think nike+ and Fish'n'steps THROUGH THE TECHNOLOGY turn the exertion activity INTO A GAME. Again, as the ice-cream run with Dooshie shows, we do not need technology to do that, but these systems ADDITIONALLY support distributed players (making it social), AND allow for exercising together ASYNCHRONOUSLY (so they do not have to do it at the same time). So the 2 systems do 3 things. Difference seems to be that Fish'n'Steps thinks the best approach is if we do it subtly (e.g. they do not associate exertion achievement to individuals (we do not know which fish belongs to which person), nor do we know exactly how many steps you did (only an estimate size of the fish), whereas Nike+ goes for the complete opposite approach and makes it very visible (you can challenge friends directly, and see exact time and distance run). Therefore nike+ is probably more competitive (I guess), so appeals to a different target group, or is exertion better suited for competition than the cooperation approach ('we all work together to get an aquarium of happy fish') favored by Fish'N'Steps?

  3. Andrew "Dooshie" DemetriouJune 5, 2009 at 3:00 PM

    Hello boys and girls.

    I love the Nike+ so my arguement might be a tad biased, but I believe that people who run and actually get physical exercise, apart from walking to uni every day, are more likely to want to compete with others. It's not because exercise makes people competitive monsters, it's just that when you are doing something not only beneficial to yourself but also difficult, you will subconciously want to challenge yourself, and that manifests in the ability to challenge other on the Nike+ system.

    People who do some form of exercise (be it going to the gym, running around the block or on the treadmill) will agree with me that when you start doing it, you feel great and constantly want to challenge yourself and become better and more fit. However, with the winter times coming, and general laziness of humankind a constant factor, something like Nike+ is quite a good way to get people off their arse and out the house with a pair of runners and trackies. I know from first hand that once winter sets in, it's a massive pain trying to motivate yourself out the door when you are ALREADY sitting down eating doritos and playing Left 4 Dead.

    The invention of portable music made exercise easier in itself, and with Nike+ i think getting fit will be far easier than it ever has been.

    The problem with the Fish n Steps system is that (generally) people who are motivated enough to run or get some kind of exercise could not be bothered with a result of something as passive as a cutesy, growing fish. It's just not in the same ball park as exercise. I could see it being used as an aid for like, Weight Watchers or something. Where they just need a visual aid to see how they are coming along for points each week. I dunno, just an idea.

    I'd like to see what people think, because for once i have a strong opinion on something.

    Oh and by the way Rob, if Code+ came out... hot damn I would be the first customer. i loathe code.



    P.S: Floyd, the day that you and I are both in the presence of an ice-cream truck... IT'S ON!

  4. From what i gathered the nike+ was a game based on people's competitive streak, setting challenges and goals for you to reach to prove that your better than other people. And the website resembled those online scoreboards for FIFA '09 (or was it UEFA??).

  5. So Dooshie,
    is Nike+ more competitive because exertion is involved, or would it be the same in any computationally augmented game, played with a gamepad?

    in other words: are you more competitive when you run or when playing XBox? If so, why?

  6. Hey,
    Great lecture once again, very helpful to see the vast amount of information we have covered thus far regarding the design of games all summarized and shown in one place.
    As for the Nike+;
    Looks pretty rad, I would totally go for it if I was in the market for a way to spend around $1000 on an iPhone and new shoes that motivate me to run; I think I find it more motivating that I can run without having spent that much money.
    The way it tracks your distance and progress is pretty cool though, however I’m not sure exactly how it can measure your traveled distance if it’s simply a pressure button in your foot, I would have thought you’d need a little more technology to get that kind of thing right (like GPS or something).
    Being the last lecture I want to say that I really appreciate the content and insight that you have shared with us Floyd and I also commend you on the lecture format you so boldly used hence making ‘Maths & physics for artists’ by far the most enjoyable and engaging of all our lectures.

  7. The boost song idea for Nike+ was fantastic! :D Eye of the Tiger was sooo predictable though :P

    I think it's the statistical scores that make Nike+ more competitive, whether it be with the player against themselves or the player against others. It's the same with Tetris, you're always trying to beat the high-score. Would Tetris be Tetris if it didn't encompass a high-score?

    are you more competitive when you run or when playing XBox? If so, why?

    That's a very subjective question. What am I competing against? What are my outcomes? If my name (and maybe photo ;D) will appear in a top10 list on a website that the whole world is likely to visit and see, I would find that motivating and competitive. Would running or playing on Xbox make a difference?

    Some people would choose an easier path, a less challenging perhaps. Others would like the challenge and try and push their limits and skills.

    Well anyway, I would like to thank Floyd for the fantastic classes we've all had together. I honestly have never had a class so motivating, so inspiring, so challenging and so useful. Floyd, I can't think of words that describe how much I appreciate your classes, and the fact that you were always positive, that you always thanked us for coming, that you put so much effort into getting us to think outside the box. I think the only way to show how much it means to us is for us to use the valuable things we've learned during the classes in the future, and come up with great games that you would be proud of :)

    Danke schön! :)

  8. I think the fish'n'steps is just as much a game as nike+. The two do however take different steps(pun) to encourage you to play the game. Fish'n'steps provides a personal and private gift in the fish'n'steps breeding interface. Whilst nike+ allows your scores to be posted worldwide and for you to compete against millions of people online.

    Nike+ is beneficial in that if you hade a competitive personality you would thrive in an environment were you were constantly encouraged to continue 'playing' the game. Some people however are not encouraged by comparitive statistics and instead find them discouraging and intimidating.

    I would agree that Nike+ was a better game for encouraging people to continue running, i'd also agree that exerting yourself physical can lead to you competing much more fiercely than on XBOX live. This is due to the ability to instantaneously manifest any competitive urge you may feel. The most intelligent thing about Nike+ is that it uses this idea that you can compete, whenever you want, wherever you want. Over Xbox there are confines that restrict you from competing as completely as you could with something like running. The game being apart of your shoes. something you may wear everyday also contributes to the players ability to compete completely.

    I sound like a Nike commercial. Despite my accolades, nike+ is marketed selfishly. The shoes cost between $150 -300 the sensor is 50 and its only compatible with 4th gen ipod nanos (around 230). It appears nike are only interested in the rich becoming fit.

    Thank you Floyd for all your help this semester. I think its fairly unanimous that you were a wonderful teacher and we'd all like to have you apart of our class again.

    Michele Iannello

  9. @ FLOYD

    I think youre more competative running by yourself than playing xbox by yourself.
    When youre playing xbox by yourself, the results are very "on/off" if your game ends, thast it, you get your score and if you win you win, if you dont you dont.
    While running you arent limitted by such strict rules, you can keep running and draw out the sense of competition within yourself, even when you think you need to give up, you can push that lttle bit extra to beat your "high score". so while running you can stretch the rules and bounds of competition becasue thay are your own personal limitations.


    If you are in direct competition with another person the line is a little more blurred.
    If you are running, and your competition is faster or fitter than you, then you cant beat them. You can still push yourself as above, and you might win on occasion, but generally the more skilled cometitor will win, so the competition is subject to skill.
    The same applies for playing xbox where all the aforementioned concepts still apply. you have a direct sense of competition which is limited by the rules of the game, and the mre skilled player will usually win, however, while playing xbox the cometition is sligtly less personal in that fact that in the virtual world of the game, players avatars are usually equal. player skill still factors in but i think someone who plays say halo for the first time is more likely to beat someone who plays halo all the time, than some who runs for the first time is likely to beat someone who is a competition athlete.
    so sometimes a stricter competition environment can provide a more intense competition.

  10. Ok so this i guess is gonna be the last time i leave a blog on here (i think)

    so yeah once again, great class. to be honest i always dreaded 3 hour classes especially math ones but you Flloyd have made it very engaging and interesting for all of us. Hope to have you as a lecturer again.

    So with this Nike+ thing, it seems like a good idea but i would agree that it doesn't seem all that much like a game. It counts the distance you run that's about all (from what i understand at least). I mean filling your car up with petrol, there is a counter for that so i would say its a game either ALTHOUGH the levels of exertion are VERY much apart so i guess you cant really compare. PLUS depending on the individual, they might make it a game for themselves, for example they might challenge themselves to run a certain distance over a certain course, then the next day the say thing but in a quicker time if that makes sense.

    Anyway great being part of the class so thanks again Flloyd and thanks everyone else too! (P.S try running to the band Arsis (We are the Nightmare) it always gets me pumped for....anything :-)

  11. Oh i forgot to mention...

    FLloyd Virtual Limit never mentioned involving pain (well not physical pain). The worst is holding your hands above your head. Anyone try it now (if you dont mind looking like your a looney who got out of his straight jacket mind you) hold your arms above your head as high as you can for about 5 minutes while moving your legs at the same time. You'll see what im talking about

  12. The Nike thing sounded pretty interesting. I think the most appealing idea was the men vs women one. It puts you in a team. Its no longer just you and your petty problems. Your part of something bigger; the war of the sexes. I could definitly see myself enlisting... then i remember the running part and yeah.. forget it.
    *resumes playing counterstrike*

    Floyd i guess this is goodbyes. Can't believe that was the last lesson already. What class are you teaching next semester? Ill get transfered!

    Just wanna tell you (if u havent been told already 1000 times) that you've been a fantastic lecturer. You've raised my standards so high that all my other lecturers stink now. It's been a pleasure to be in your class. I've also been amazed at your outlook on everything. Always happy, always positive and with a smile.

    Your "sports over a distance" concepts were great. Some of them i didnt think were so good, but others (like the boxing the wall one) were briliant. But whether i liked them or not, i love what your doing and you should definitly keep at it.

    Thanks Floyd :)

  13. Hello, its Nicholas here.

    Concerning how could Nike+ be improved, and why?

    The addition of a more direct racing or marathon element would help bring in more people, as they'd bring in the people they know to compete light-heartedly while exercising and vying to get 1rst, 2nd, third, etc. Those who perform poorly could be given a small penalty, - that is to run/ walk more often?

    concerning Floyd's question of:in other words: "are you more competitive when you run or when playing XBox? If so, why?"

    My answer realtes to what Andrew Lewis has said before:

    That my performance and competitive actions would be affected by my capabilities and performance for sprinting or gaming.

    (assuming that I'm playing online or splitscreen versus other players)
    In this case, I'd be more competitive playing a video game than running, as I tend to do a bit better playing something like Halo 3 than I do running against some of my friends who are very agile and speedy. Therefore, my past performance and the nature of my competitors plays a large role in determining my competitive actions here.

    Before I sign off, I'd like to thank Floyd for his different methods of teaching. He has really made us think about things we probably wouldn't consider on any normal day (this is actually excellent for us budding game designers) & letting the students contribute
    our opinions and the facts so that everyone learns or thinks about something useful and interesting. Hopefully Floyd, you can teach us in another lesson here at RMIT in the near future or before we graduate! Well, that's it for now.

    Nicholas Lim

    howdy folks
    so here it goes... if i compared the nike+to the fish'n'steps i think the nike+ would come out on top. The idea of having a companion that changes and grows with your progress (the fish )could be very motivating but as a game i think that: the visuals are cartoony and unatractive, its repetitive and as the results come from a pedometer your fish could be awesome from all those steps youv taken but walking isnt all you need to do to loose weight and your physical appearence may not be reflected by the fish giving you the feeling that the game doesnt actually work and that you shouyld just give up.

    The nike + takes something that has been around since people could first strap speakers to there head and made it competative and marketable. as a game the nike + has good visuals (the website and blah blah) no cheesy graphics will attract more people. It takes a completly solitary sport and turns it to a social action, suddenly people can now compete against and be challenged by thousands of different people all over the world also they now can swap and share music with people who all have atleast one thing ib common..the desire to run(and they own an ipod)so they can say heya wats ur power song? wow mines..blah blah blah. Althoughyou may say but people have always been able to run in groups isnt that social? why do we need the nike +.....if those people were listening to music they would have their mind and body concentrating making it impossible to interact with the people around you yeah unless they crash there probably not gonna notice any one else.
    so yeah just felt like getting that off my chest...anyway thanks floyd for your time this semester the class was great


  15. Samantha To s3197261

    Fish'n' step compare to Nike+ ,
    Nike+ is so much better, i mean why would you keep a fish, things like that eg, tamagochi(sp) people get bored of that and adults really don't do those things.

    Thank for taking the class this semester

  16. Thanks for all the nice words.
    To Mick, I know that Virtual Limit does not involve physical pain, but your game plays with the notion of thrill and (potential) extreme pain, even though it uses technology to avoid exactly that.

  17. Hey everyone,

    It was great to see how everything tied together. So much of that class I was just thinking "why are we doing this?" (maybe that's every class?) but I never worried much about it, cos you could tell it was all useful. Seeing the whole thing in a broader spectrum gives me a final assurance that Maths and Physics was a very helpful class. Not a lot of actual maths and physics, but what we learnt was a lot more useful; in my opinion anyway : P.

    I have to say thanks to Floyd and all the fellow students for making that class utterly awesome : D. Floyd set the scene and you guys just built up a great atmosphere. It was great to have such freedom of speech and interaction and I hope that continues in future courses. Unfortunately I had to leave that last class a little early thanks to v-line train times, but it was still great. I think that was the first class I was unhappy about leaving early; that oughta tell you something : P.

    Finally I have to ask that you all stay awesomely crazy : P.

    P.S. Hey Floyd, does this research in california mean you won't be joggin past my apartment anymore? But who will I bump into when walking home from safeway?!

  18. Floyd when i talk about my uni course i talk about my maths and physics class! Its true, im not sure if its because it didn't involve any solving of maths and physics but i am sure its because your classes are so interesting and fresh! You were never dull and always very enthusiastic about teaching us. It made me question what i was thinking and how i usually approach things which i think is a invaluable tool in my future learning. Also thanks for the great in site into physical gaming something i never even put much thought if any into but it is extremely fun and interesting!

    Thanks for the awesome Thursday arvos Floyd c u in z future!

    LoL now to talk about the lecture :P

    Im one of those now "few" people who still don't listen to music when they run :P i think this idea of motivating you to go try harder with music and set goals is a great idea :) I think the more refined Nike/apple concept give a great competitive edge for when you are setting your personal goals unlike the fish in the tank.

  19. Hey hey

    As for the discussion about the nike+ & fish`n`step, i would point at nike+ as a better choice as their ads are more convincing that will naturally draw attention from consumers for their products.

    Of how could Nike+ be improved and why, i think that if Nike+ could include the sensor for the shoes, it would be a great deal as consumers do not have to spend more money on the sensors.

    once again thanks floyd for delivering great lectures to all of us.


  20. I don’t think watching a fish grow inside of a tank provides enough motivation for people who otherwise don’t run, to actually run. However for those who do already run, it might be a nice added incentive to push a little harder.

    But the whole concept of Nike+ is a far better spur to get people running – even in winter. As Benny said the idea of team based competition, and being part of something bigger than running alone or with a mate is far more encouraging and inspirational to sign up and start running, and unlike Fish’n’Steps is more likely to persuade people who don’t run to get involved.

    Being able to communicate and compare yourself with others adds to the competitiveness and fun of the activity, but does not necessarily make it a game.
    Something like Nike+ would only be a game if the individual doing it, actually saw it as a game, otherwise it would just be motivated running or sport (which is subjectively a game anyway) – If it was enjoyed and made into a game(basically sport with a smile) would just allow players to have more fun with it and essentially be easier to enjoy, taking the seriousness away from the competition.

    At Chad’s question to Floyd: Are you more competitive when you run or when playing XBox? If so, why?
    I think that anything physical would be more competitive, basically because your physically trying to prove/ assert yourself- it means more to achieve something physically than mentally or virtually– Maybe its just society’s view… sportsmen/women are always held in a higher regard than say the smartest figures– they are more respected and more recognised in our culture than most other people.
    This doesn’t mean that playing Xbox isn’t competitive – but it is less likely that a person will have a vested interest in the result of a game (I’m not saying it doesn’t happen)
    Yet like Chad said it IS subjective. If a person is more connected to a game, it will be more important to them to achieve a result that they are happy with – although this depends on their goals and reasons for playing the game.

    I would say that I am more competitive in physical activities, because I can apply more of myself (my entire body and ability) into the activity (rather than just mind and reflexes) - but I don’t necessarily care if I win/ succeed, I find the competition more interesting and entertaining. I think that competition in physicality also comes more naturally… I train for and do Parkour (which I guess u can Youtube or Google if you don’t know what it is- although it probably wont be done justice) -anyway Parkour is mostly a non-competitive activity, however when I’m with certain friends I push harder and we often seem to get competitive while training – even through the conditioning, instead of say, simply doing sprints, we would be racing to reach the end first – which adds fun and excitement to the moment – something we both enjoy.

    Crap I’ve written more than I thought- I wont wrap it up with more praise- I think its getting repetitive, but I’ll say that you have really helped me personally to open up and change the way I see things – I’ll look at games and designs with more of an edge and understanding of how they work, what they do, and why they’re put together in that way. Thanks for a GREAT semester, have a good one and all the best… starting……. Now!

  21. Hi,awesome lecture last week.It was interesting to hear the other groups presenting their games, very nice work. I love Nike+ particularly because it seems so interesting. It offers an easy way to keep track of runs and gives people some feedback that people will most likely need to help keep them motivated.

    But, Nike+ also has some drawbacks in my opinion. Many people think we need not spend much money on “gear”. Because using Nike+ we need the Nike Sensor, a Nike+ model shoe with a special pocket in which to place the device, and an Apple iPod Nano or Touch. As to me, i wont be motivated if i think about i spend much money on the equipment. Cuz what i enjoy about running is that very little equipment is needed. I prefer a cost-efficient one.

    Also, i think running with headphones on the street or trail can be dangerous. It’s not good for your hearing, you can’t hear cars approaching. And maybe we need constant attention while running to ensure it is collecting information.

    That's all what i thought. Anyway, thanks again Floyd for taking great class to all of us this semester.

    Jiajing Zhang

  22. Nike+ does appeal to a large and competitive community, but I do feel thats its just a little sensationalised. Fish'n'steps seems geared towards younger people and I don't think its fair to compare the two.

    Regardless, the lecture was great. It was a nice conclusion to a lovely class. I'm not gonna' miss the late hours, but I know I'll miss the fun and lively atmosphere.


  23. Nike+ seems like a great motivational tool for people motivated by competition (which is a lot of us). On the other hand, people who aren't competitive are going to be intimidated by this competitive aspect. These are the people that FishnSteps is going to appeal to - it has a less quantifiable, more relaxed attitude to motivation.

    I think, however, that people who exert themselves for the joy of it are going to be fans of Nike+. FishnSteps seems to be targeted at people who see exercise as a chore - people trying to lose weight for health reasons etc. So, in answer to your question, Floyd, I would have to say exertion is a competitive activity.

    In terms of improvements to Nike+, expense is an obvious one. People like to run because it is cheap and accessible. I also dislike that it only works with the Apple iPod - obviously this is because the two companies have an agreement; but nonetheless I think it's a big drawback.

    That being said, the social implications of the Nike+ are really very good. The concept of creating a battle of the sexes was really interesting. Now, I'm not motivated to run at all under normal circumstances, but apply that social element on it, and all of a sudden, you've piqued my interest.

    Re: More competitive in a video game or a physical competition:

    I would actually say I get more competitive playing a video game (assuming I'm playing with other people) than competing with someone physically. For me (this is going to sound really, really dumb) winning in a video game is more important than beating someone at, say, running. That did sound dumb. But it's true. I believe the reason it's true is I feel more skilled - and therefore more proud of my skills - as a gamer, and therefore I have a greater emotional investment. As a result, I'm more competitive.

    That is all.

    Lisa Dyball

  24. Nike + didn't really seem like a game but more like a competition. I know games are often competitive, but have they been simplified so much that COMPETITION=GAME ???? I do like that it is aimed at motivating people to jog & exercise, me not motivated, others, maybe! Also seems good and social and something to talk about over dinner if you're into that kinda thing.

    FishSteps looks cute, I like the concept of creating a virtual pet to motivate you...better than Superpets applications! I also like the open-source nature of it, not the global consumerist Nike...BUY! BUY! BUY! (but pay the chinese workers SQUAT!).

    Presentations... wow! A talented, intelligent class full of lots of great ideas & information. Keep it up fellow classmates!


    Previous to this class, I defined a game as good or bad by ;

    1) Art & Visuals
    2) Gameplay (ability)
    3) Story
    4) Whether I liked it...

    Through your lessons Floyd, I can now see a lot more valuable attributes of Good Game Design and thank-you for showing me this. I also thoroughly enjoyed learning about more technical aspects of game development & hacking.

    Overall, I have enjoyed the classes immensely and learnt a lot from both you & my fellow classmates. Perhaps the subject should be called "Physicality in Gaming" or "The Future of Games" because although I learnt much valuable info & was pointed to many an interesting link, it still wasn't "Physics or Maths" but WAS "for Artists". I'm not complaining, but merely commenting.

    THANK-YOU all the same, LOVED IT!!!

  25. Great last lecture, i hope next semester will be like this class or i am going to miss it. Learnt a bunch as per usual and enjoyed seeing the last remaining group presentations.

    hm all i can say about Nike is that it can only be improved by getting its consumers having fun socially with their product, making other people wanting to join in as well which is basically what they seem to be trying to accomplish with this running thing that they are doing.

    Great work with taking over this course Floyd, had a lot of enjoyment learning from you and wish you the best of luck in whatever you do next (Y)

  26. Nike+ has taken something that already exists – that people listen to music whilst running to keep them motivated and just added the iPod and Nike brand names- but, it also takes something people do independently and turns it into a social, competitive activity.

    Fish n Steps is a game that is intended to bring awareness and motivate the player to get physical for its health benefits. This links into the discussion we’ve had before – did Wii intend for the Wii to be a weight loss program?

    And Fish ‘n’ Steps works – the results show that even if the participants did not increase their daily step count, they became aware of their current level of fitness and the benefits of improving it.
    Whereas with Nike+ it seems as if the participant would already have to have an understanding of their current level of fitness to be inclined to purchase and use the product.

    Therefore they both have different target groups – Nike+ appears as though it would only attract people who are already interested in physically exerting themselves and would like extra motivation to do so. It is also aimed at people with money.
    Fish ‘n’ steps, on the other hand does not cost as much and is intended for people of all levels of fitness and creates an awareness to their current level and a motivation to increase it. However, the results showed that the already physically active participants did not increase their daily step count as a result of participating in Fish ‘n’ Steps.

    I think, as a concept, Fish ‘n’ Steps is really smart and covers most of those pretty subjects – performance, social, emotion etc. But it hasn’t really had a chance to… ‘shine’
    However, I don’t think it’s an exertion game – it’s meant to be added onto your normal day to day life as a motivation to, for example, take the stairs rather than the elevator, and to slowly but surely change your behaviour and view towards getting physical.
    Nike+, however, you have to stop what you’re doing and actually go out and actively take part. And, to me, Nike+ is all exertion without the game.

    Why fish?

    -Kalonica Quigley

  27. Well I feel like I need to make some sort of definitive post since this awesome class has finally finished.

    I suppose first I think Nike+ smashes Fish n Steps. I suppose if you're going to look at them as a game, a key element to games is feedback. Nike+ has so much feedback related to performance. I like the Fish n Steps concept. It's a much more unique way to track progress for exercise but it needs to be developed further. It's too passive.

    How would people feel about it if fishes battled each other. So that you ran to make your fish bigger and stronger so that when you battled your fish against someone elses it had a better chance of winning.

    I think I'm about to start designing an improved Fish n Steps. It may go on a bit.

    So you run to make your fish bigger (in fact it doesn't even need to be a fish. Maybe it would be more fun if you could design your own custom monster?)

    You fish/monster gets bigger and stronger depending on how much running you do.

    You can then send your fish/monster into battle against other users fish/monster. Obviously the fitter/strong fish/monster has a better chance to win.

    With this set up it's not just "Oh I'm running to make a fish bigger." It's "I'm running to make my fish bigger so I can beat someone else at a game." Which is far more comparitive to sport training. Which I think would produce more motivation to run/improve your fish.

    Also, I've just thought of a more strategic element to the game. Instead of running being directly proportional to size/strength. Running builds up Ability Points that you can then assign to different traits of your fish. Such as Strength, Speed, Dexterity and so on.


    I can think of heaps of ways to flesh this idea out. I reckon if someone gave me enough money I could develop the smack out of it and it would dominate Nike+.


    As a conclusion to the semester... I've really enjoyed your classes Floyd. They've really helped me think more objectively and constructively about games and interactivity in general.

    However, all this talking about exergames hasn't made me want to play games. I want to play some proper sport!

  28. Man, where do i begin?
    Floyd you took a complete bore of a class and made it into one that we all actually looked forward to every week. It's insane how at the start of semester with our original lecturer, i wasn't overly phased about maths and physics ending after the first semester, but now i'm actually quite sad to think maths and physics is over.

    I think that the class turn out is evidence that we all enjoyed your class, i mean if they had told us to come to a class that finished at 7.30pm for any other subject i don't think many of us would show up. Thank you for creating an environment where we could actually learn and enjoy it at the same time.

    Regarding the Nike+ and FishSteps business, i think that for most Nike+ was the most appealing because it was more polished and professional, but also because it focused on exercise, but linked it with music (something everyone loves) and ipods (something that everyone has and anyone who doesn't have one, wants one.)

    I think that the Nike+ being competitive is what makes it almost game like.
    FishSteps could also be perceived as game like though i suppose if we're willing to look at Nike+ like that, because FishSteps provides you with a fish that you want to evolve, so the push to get a bigger and better character is similar to a lot of games where you want your character to build up experience, certain skills etc... just with FishSteps you have a crummy looking fish.

    I think each of the two has their own pros and cons really, they both are encouraging people to get active which is great, but FishSteps' appearance is really quite childish and i can't see any teen or adult wanting to use it to be honest, and in this day and age little kid's have ipods and grow up too fast anyway, so how many kids would want to use it either?

    I think the idea has potential but the choice of using fish is a bit lame, maybe they should link the step count for the day with people's WOW characters, and give them points based on that.
    Imagine that, all the WOW fanatics out for a morning jog? sounds like a sign of the apocalypse.

    Nike+ is obviously much more professional in comparison, but is it really fair to compare the two when FishSteps is made by some random and Nike+ is a merge of two hugely successful brands?
    It's a bit like comparing an ipod with a hobo yelling at you from the sidelines.

    The things i dislike about Nike+ is that it a) costs a fair amount of cash for the shoes and the little orange pressure pad thing and b) if it's all about motivating people to exercise and such like FishSteps, then why be stingy and make it so you have to purchase their expensive footwear? Sounds like Nike saw an excuse to make some more money in my opinion.

    I hope another brand starts producing other shoes half the price that are compatible, let's see how much Nike cares about people getting active then.

    Thank you again Floyd, i hope to see you at rmit again, uni will be pretty bland without you.


  29. Logan Gray s3235083June 10, 2009 at 11:54 PM

    Hey floyd, great ending lecture in my opinion, although i had to get out a little early i really enjoyed it ! the biscuits rocked. hard. and let me just say that from the begining of the semester till the end, you made maths and physics fun, from your accent to the "______ Over a Distance" but the course material was very very well thought of on such short notice, its a shame you have to go i'd love to do a maths and physics for artists 2 !!

    anyways, thank you for all the game design steps you've taught me, and on behalf of the class
    thank you for bein an awesome lecturer!!


  30. Ciao a tutti!

    So sad, this is the last post :(

    Ok down to business :P

    Fish Steps was cool if you are into the cute side of things and as an alternative if you didn't want to go out and buy the fancy acessories that are needed for the Nike +.
    I honestly can't see people who take fitness seriously really going OMG my fish is so much bigger than yours! As apposed to the more commercially accepted Nike +; as i think it would be far more damaging on your oponents ego if you featured on the website and they didn't. =P

    I guess in saying that, you would have to look at the target audience and the demographics of the individuals that Fish Steps and Nike + are aimed at; like I mentioned above, people who take fitness serisouly AND have the financial freedom to go out and purchase the necessary equipment are going to chose Nike + over Fish Steps.

    Finally without futher adu...

    Floyd, I must commend you on your ability to teach with a great deal of enthusiasm in each class!
    There wasn't a point in which I came to a lecture and left without having learnt a new concept or been presented with something that was valuable. There should be more lecturers like you! ^_^
    I have a greater understanding of what is out there in the gaming world, especially with exertion gaming and physciality :P Something I doubt I would of achieved previously.
    I'm going to miss Maths and Physics :(
    I agree with Chad, that to show how much we value the knowledge that you have passd onto us, is to to use what we've learned during the classes in the future.

    I wish you the best in your future endeavours!

    Lauren Ferro

  31. Raphael Chung Shang Yuen S3242135June 11, 2009 at 12:46 AM

    Comments on competitiveness of a physical game versus that of a controller game.

    What i wanted to say has pretty much been said before, i.e about which you actually pay more attention to within Andrew's post, i just wanted to add, adrenaline is present in both types of games, but somehow a physically exhausting game prevents people from thinking alot and thus socialising alot easier.

    My opinion is that being good in sports requires alot more than a mental state, the body also has to be ready for the stress, and so being good in sports says a lot more.

    But i'm still a gamer, i suck at running or any sport, competitive gaming requires faster reflexes, a so-called twitch fest, and precise actions with quick judgement.

    Side note is that, sports has the advantage of uncalculated events, its in the real world and gives you more freedom with your movement, the player can innovatively play a sport. A game can also do this but to a certain extent, because it's all in a program. This extends to give sports a more competitive side since not everyone plays the same, not everyone mashes the same buttons.

    Floyd you really brought this class back from the dead, i lament the days of binary in Maths and Phys. I don't think it is fair to judge our last posts because everyone is thinking about your class ending. Hope you continue to teach us, or good luck to your up-coming plans.

  32. Ben Goodvach-DraffinJune 11, 2009 at 1:54 AM

    In terms of the Nike+ being effective depends on the person. If someone is highly competitive and they have friends using the Nike+ as well, they're more likely to do more running to outdo their friends and competitors. If someones not motivated in this way, then they'll probably leave it and go back to playing their computer games that let you sit down.

    Thanks Floyd for the term of teaching, nice job..i didn't learn and vector math which i'm proud of!

    Ben Goodvach-Draffin

  33. A brilliant end to the semester, thanks Floyd! Maths & Physics became so worthwhile under your influence. I wouldn't be lying when I say I wish there would be more of an actual maths/physics slant (I'm not the one who emailed Stefan though! don't hurt me), as those things would certainly be useful in the future. That said, I would never deny that the concepts we learnt and were exposed to were any less valuable than said maths/physics, and were possibly even more valuable in some respects. Teaching us how to learn, &c. &c. A+, will miss this class muchly.

    My thoughts on Fish 'n Steps vs. Nike+:

    Well, I am heavily ingrained with anti-"The Man" sentiments within my person, so take with a litre of salt... but I can't help but be skeptical of Nike+. The fact that it is so obviously a money-grubbing venture overrides everything else I might feel. It's a huge corporation! Of course it's going to look more polished/etc. Give the underdogs a chance. I think I would respect them more if they sponsored a smaller company to develop the concept. Okay, competition-wise... yeah, I can see how Nike+ would win over F'n'S on that one. But I do think that with further development, maybe reshifting of some ideas, better marketing, and as computers/technology become more ingrained into our daily lives (well, more than they already are): F'n'S (or something like it) does have the potential to become something amazing. Maybe if it were directed at a younger audience? A tool for parents trying to get their kids more interested in exercise? Something like that.

    Holy crap it is 4.03AM I am ending this right here, THANK YOU SO MUCH FLOYD for everything! Amazing lectures, every single one. We as a class have been very lucky to have you. Best of luck to you in wherever life takes you next. :)

  34. Nike+ isn’t a game or competition it’s just a marketing scheme for us consumers to buy something that we already have. It merely takes the sport of running and adds technology. Now the technology can be a benefit, causing motivation, competition, etc. But it’s just like an example of a feather duster compared to a “Go Duster”. Expense is greater than the benefit.

    More competitive in a video game or a physical competition?

    Well the other day I was in a bunch sprint in a bike race, I lead the whole way and got beat within the last 5m, I guess the reason I race is because I want to be better than the other participants as well as the physical exertion. In a video game you can get these emotions, but I believe they aren’t as genuine.

    I find that I will be more competitive in real life rather than in a video game, as in real life you have “real life” consequences. eg: if I win a bike race I get X amount of dollars and Y prize but in a game I get X sword and Y helmet. Obviously the money is going to be more beneficial to me than a virtual sword, therefore I’m going to try harder.
    Physical competition generates emotions, while games are trying to replicate them.

  35. Last week Lecture, also a last lecture of this subject, is great and interesting. I hope this class could be continued under Floyd's teaching. Thank you so much that you took this class. Although you started to teach this class at mid-term , not whole semester, we still got all the things about math and physic in game that you want us to know and understand what is a game design. Thank for all that.

    To me, Nike + is an interesting idea. Nike is expensive ( someone say that) but you have o think that , what result you will get when using Nike+ with high quality in a long time period. The competitive between Nike+ and playing game , I could choose Nike+ . Because i could be healthy( exercise your body), get fun and feel safety when using it.That is physicality and emotion. Also about social aspect, i think Nike+ could attract a number of target but not much if the cost is so high to middle class.I just think that , no more comment in my head...

  36. Ben Taylor s3168518June 11, 2009 at 1:52 PM

    The Nike Vs. Fish thing seemed rather moot to me, the fish seemed to have an end point, and overall not much motivation to go forward with the running, as well as not as good technology as Nike. The Nike+ thing seemed to be more interesting, as well as more professional. They are both for slightly different things so it is hard to compare them. The group did a good job of explaining this.

    Thanks Floyd for teaching such an interesting class, I've enjoyed it so much. I hope to see you around in the future.

  37. I don't have time to read through all the comments so I hope this hasn't been said.

    But I think Nike+ could benefit from more social interactivity. Using the iPhones/iPod touch GPS, you could incorporate Floyd's jogging over a distance, and get updates on how much further a friend is running in real time, or on your current/shared route.

    I really liked the idea of Nike+, and would even consider buying this product. It's a great way to make exercise more performance based, social and fun.

  38. I liked fish'n'steps alot more than Nike+. Perhaps i'm just adverse to the money grabbing cross-promotion thing, but i like the idea of your steps counting towards something like....a fish. Ok the fish were very lame but this initial idea could be re-worked into something better. Intergrated into existing games perhaps? Better drawn fish?

    I do hope i'm not too late with the comments and grades here. I was assuming the end of thursdee.
    To think we would be having Maths & Physics right now. *wipes single tear from eye*

  39. Alrighty, since I’ve apparently exceeded the word limit, I’m going to have to post this in two goes…

    ...Okay, i've wiped the tears off my cheek and am ready to start posting again after my internet decided it couldn't load the page and thus loosing what i'd written. So, here goes, i think this is basically what i was crapping on about though i'm probably going to miss something out and this one will be nowhere near as well worded:

    Awww! It saddens me that there will be no more thursday games lectures, no more of my weekly Floyd Fix.
    But thanks Floyd, you did a great job at lecturing our class, especially coming in midway after Stuart whom (although he seemed like a great guy) just wasn't meant to lecture our class; his heart just wasn't in it.
    I really liked the approach you had to teach this class, Floyd, with all the group discussions and comment time. When i become a teacher i will definitely think back to this lecture and think how i can best implement this sort of learning into what i do. I am a very big fan of structured, systematic ways of doing things, so i really loved your method of how to make a physical game. This sort of thinking can be transposed to and tailored to suit many other things. On this note, i feel that the content that we were taught by you in the course has been very much worthwhile and indeed moreso than straight Maths and Physics. Sure, maths and physics are components to designing and game and these are things that must be looked at, but a course which is called something like Game Design which INCORPOATES the concepts of maths and physics. Stefan/whoever decides these things, think about it, Floyd is onto something here.
    and secondly, not only will it be more worthwhile to learn how to design a game and i would feel like i'm doing something of more obvious relevance to my course than just maths and physics, but i would much rather go to a class called Game Design!!

    to be continued...

  40. Okays!
    Nike+ vs Fish n Steps
    *ding ding*
    "In the red corner..."
    ...yeah okay *clears throat*

    For starters, i had never heard of Fish n Steps prior to last Thursday's lecture, so if you're going to look at the two products comparitive success, marketing i think has been an issue.
    However, in terms of just comparing the products, we're looking at two completely different products. Though products which tackle the same aim through different ways.
    The two products have been targeted at different audiences. For example, i can see a working woman using her Nike+ on a regular basis trying to monitor and keep a routine exercise and stay healthy. The user-friendly interface along with the product that Nike provide gives the impression of fun as well as keeping professional and with a clear aim.
    However, Fish n Steps with the added fun of watching your fish grow, i see is more targeted at young adolescent kids with the aim of combating childhood obesity. The ability to watch your fish grow as you exercise gives you immediate visual feedback which you can use as motivation as well as to track your progress. And unlike if you were to just count calories, which you then only eat back and feel like you're still stuck at square one, Fish n Steps allows you to visually see the progress you've made throughout the whole time you've been doing it through how big your fish is getting.
    Also Nike+ in my eyes would do better than Fish n Steps because of who's involved. Nike is a well respected company and known to put out quality products, so as opposed to Fish n Steps which is made by a little known company (correct me if i'm wrong, i can't actaully remember who made it), Nike is better off because they've already got the market which associates Nike with quality exercise and sporting goods and wear. In conjunction with Apple, again a very well respecting and huge company, there can be a lot of trust invested in the fact that you're getting a quality product and also there would be great tech support.
    And may i add quickly, iPods are probably the most used and owned form of music player these days, everyone has one, and what used to be known as the walkman (sony) is now an iPod to most people, regardless of whether it's an iRiver, Creative, or whomever product. So since most people already have an iPod, they're already half way there to getting a Nike+

    But i think the thing that makes Nike+ more attractive than Fish n Steps is the way that it's more obviously associated music with running. Sure, you can listen to your music while running with your pedometer for Fish n Steps, but with Nike+, it's already there. And the music is what makes running fun. The music acts as a distractor from the actual tedious task of running or exercising.

    Thank you Floyd. Good luck in the future.
    Thank you all others.
    Cheers y'all,
    Dylan xx

  41. 0o0o last commentttt. i shouldnt leave it so late because now i can't remember the last lecture. grrrr
    ooo i remember fantails and mintiessss hrmmmm umm good fantails? ohh thats why i can't remember the lecture. i had to leave early. well all i can really say is i really enjoyed maths and physics with you made it pretty much the funnest class in the history of all classes ever... sad to see it end... ummmmmm hang out with the ITSUMO's sometime (: and don't fail me (:(:

  42. Scott Battye S3201290June 11, 2009 at 10:54 PM

    I don't believe there was a timeframe for comments to be in by today so I'll pop this one in now :P

    I think that Nike+ has a dominace of this field and anyone who would want to take them on would have to cover a lot of ground before even coming close, that's not to say it can't be done, it's just unlikely that anyone will really bother trying to attack the dominance Nike+ has already.

    Thanks for the good times and the laughs, ttyl for now, all the best.


  43. Howdy!

    Well I hate to see a great thing end, and I don't want to get too sentimental, but I really enjoyed Maths and Physics. It was my favourite class EVER.

    Floyd, you always made me think about games in a different perspective, which is awesome, and something I will value forever. My mindset has changed towards gaming for the better.

    Its awesome also how you kept us up to date with some of the new things in the gaming industry, and how you invited us to awesome lectures.

    I really love your style of teaching and wished you could teach every class...that would be so super cool. We should clone you or something...

    Also, I found that making us comment and participate like we have was one of the reasons that made this class so good. I also appreciate the fact that you always thanked us for commenting and participating :D

    I was always looking forward to Thursdays and M&P, but now what will I do on Thursday night????!!!

    Thankyou very much for a really rewarding experience. I really appreciate all the time and effort you put into this class to make it the success that it was.

    Kudos to you Mr Floyd.

    Now, about the class:
    I really liked the concept of the Nike+, but I think it could be inconvenient because of the expenses people would have to go through to play this game...

    But it sounds awesome nonetheless.

    Again, thanks Floyd for everything, I'll never forget Maths and Physics!!! I'll see you at the Istumo blog :D