Getting Serious About Games: Part 2- Experience Points (XP)

“Our experience is coloured through and through by books and plays and the cinema, and it takes patience and skill to disentangle the things we have really learned from life for ourselves.”
C.S. Lewis

The use of experience points is one of the key elements of any great game. David Arneson, co-creator of Dungeons and Dragons, is first credited with the implementation of experience points. In tinkering with the gameplay, he found the players having so much fun, that they didn’t want to leave the characters they had built, and wanted to move that character from storyline to storyline, to watch him/her continue to develop. With this, the experience point system was created. Characters would earn experience points based on their success from game to game. After a certain number of points, a character would “level up.”

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Getting Serious About Games: Part 1- What is it?

I’ve never been one to shy away from trying something new. The thought of failure doesn’t scare me, so when I first began my foray into “gamification”, my ultimate goal was to seek new and exciting ways in which I would ultimately better engage students in my classroom.

So I began foraging for resources and asking questions… What new and exciting things are out there? What are other teachers doing in their classrooms? What are students into that will help me gain their attention in class? I read blogs… numerous blogs, conducted a vast amount of research, read about varying pedagogies, and reached out to a few unsuspecting educators who had begun their own transition to “gamification”. I don’t want to go off on a tangent, but this part of the research- “reaching out to a few unsuspecting educators” scares people, and I’m not sure why…

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