Tania Ivanka

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Studio Inquiry

Board games.
Bored games?
Who has time to be bored anymore?
Games can be fun but also be very serious.

While making awesome games, we will also examine our culture and how designed artefacts, like board games, both reflect and reinforce our deeper cultural practices and structures. Our key theme this semester is using board games as a form of social or environmental commentary.
Be ready to have some serious fun.
We will primarily draw upon a range of games theory (ludology) in the development of our own board games.
We will also use a systems thinking framework and theory from ontological design to explore the underlying messages that games invisibly convey.
Communication of knowledge
We will explore existing games through active experience and analysis.
We will develop new games through prototyping and testing using a framework of 'rules, play and culture'*, with attention to underlying social messages of what we create.
Research and development will be presented through reports based upon class activities, workshops and analysis activities.

Through practical workshops, we will hone our crafting skills in using diverse materials and production processes covering, sticker/label production, box and game board production, the potential of 3D printing, laser cut wood and fabric printing. Through these practical workshops you also will reskin as existing simple open source tile game to rapidly test different methods and refine your crafting skills. We have several RMIT resources we can use, however you will occassionally need to purchase materials, components or specialty printing.

By the end of semester you are expected to deliver a high quality strategic game with artwork ready for production. Your final project should look like it is ready to sit on the shelf of a games shop.

Developing a fully functioning strategic board game can take significant time in development and testing to get the mechanics working just right. While you will initially develop and test a game narrative and mechanic, depending upon the complexity of this, the final game may not be fully functional or ready to play. However your intentions and aims should be well developed and reasonable progress made towards realising these aims. Accompanying instructions should introduce the overall narrative and purpose of the game to the players.
There are four assessment tasks for this studio, the briefs are made up of a range of milestone deliverables that are interconnected and build upon each other.
Brief 01: SKO 30%
Brief 02: Research (game analysis and exploration) 20%
Brief 03: Developing and testing your game. 20%
Brief 04: Final game production 30%
Studio Partner
Communities of Practice
Designing Experiences
Please note that this studio is focused upon the design of physical games. Digital games design will not be considered.

Also note that a basic deck of cards with a basic sorting mechanic as a singular design piece is not considered to be a sufficient response to the studio briefs, the intellectual explorations expected, and the material possibilities for making and crafting in this studio.

About Tania Ivanka

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