ISAGA conferences are places to share knowledge and participate in scholarly discourse. The conference experience will be a little bit different for each participant, where some people want to soak up new knowledge all week, some want to ask questions and have debates, and others want to focus on (re)connecting and expanding their networks. Everyone conferences differently, but the connection is key.

ISAGA is committed to providing an inclusive environment and we will do our best to accommodate requests for special assistance. We will also record all keynotes and presentations (with consent), and will share them with the ISAGA community after the conference. We have decided on the mix of synchronous (in-person) and asynchronous (remotely) set-up, as we believe this will have the most benefit for all participants.

We hope to be able to provide a quiet space at the conference but are still checking on availability. Please contact us if you are planning to attend the conference and may need such a space, or other accessibility support.

ISAGA 2024: Timetable

Monday (8th July)

09:00 Registration open
10:00 Welcome to the 55th International Simulation and Gaming Conference in Christchurch New Zealand

Mel Tainui: Kaiarahi Māori – Traditional Greeting

Heide Lukosch & Maria Freese: Conference chairs
Saurabh Sinha: Executive Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, University of Canterbury

10:30 Keynote 1:

Keynote Action

Heide Lukosch & Maria Freese

11:00 Morning tea
11:30 Paper session 1:

Simulation & Gaming

Chaired by Toshiko Kikkawa (Keio University, Japan)

(90 min) Lecture Hall 

Thematic session 1:

ISAGA Simulation Gaming Competition: its origin, history, and its future

Ryoju Hamada, Tomomi Kaneko

(90 min) Workshop Room

Workshop A-1:

Facilitator of the Future – Influence of Immersive Technologies on the Facilitation of Simulation Games – Part 1

Maria Freese, Birgit Zuern, Heide Lukosch

(90 min) Drawing Room

13:00 Group photo
13:15 Performance
13:30 Lunch
14:30 Workshop B-1:

Let’s Follow The Road to Happiness – Part 1

Yulduz Alimova, Marcin Opas, Marcin Wardaszko, Lukasz Maciej Wiech

(180 min in total; Part 1: 120 min) Workshop Room 

Workshop C-1:

Narrative design framework for a virtual patient – Part 1

Miranda Verswijvelen

(180 min in total; Part 1: 120 min)
Workshop Room

Workshop D-1:

Conflicted Courses: a matrix game for collaborative design – Part 1

Richard Durham, Ruth Lemon

(180 min in total; Part 1: 120 min)
Drawing Room

16:30 Afternoon tea
17:00 Workshop B-2:

Let’s Follow The Road to Happiness – Part 2

(180 min in total; Part 2: 60 min)
Workshop Room

Workshop C-2:

Narrative design framework for a virtual patient – Part 2

(180 min in total; Part 2: 60 min)
Workshop Room

Workshop D-2:

Conflicted Courses: a matrix game for collaborative design – Part 2

(180 min in total; Part 2: 60 min)
Drawing Room

18:00 End of the day

Tuesday (9th July)

08:30 Registration open
09:00

Keynote 2:

Unlocking Community Resilience through Simulation: Lessons and opportunities from the Resilience Explorer

Tom Logan: Civil and Natural Resources Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Canterbury

09:45 Pitch your Poster
10:00 Morning tea
10:30

Paper session 2: 

Facilitation

Chaired by Birgit Zuern (DHBW Stuttgart, Germany)

(90 min) Lecture Hall 

Thematic activity workshop 1:

From hobby to professional – creating pipelines for gamers to unlock talent

Dan Epstein

(90 min) Drawing Room  

Workshop E:

Cooperation across group boundaries in a multilayered social structure

Yoko Kitakaji

(90 min) Workshop Room 

12:00 Lunch meets Poster session
13:00

Paper session 3:

Design and development

Chaired by Elyssebeth Leigh (University of Technology Sydney, Australia)

(90 min) Lecture Hall 

Thematic activity workshop 2:

Laddering activity for drawing out aligned serious game outcomes and game goals

Richard Durham

(120 min) Workshop Room

Workshop F:

Revolutionizing Simulation Games? Playful Brainstorming on Enhancing Analogue Games with Immersive Technologies

Birgit Zürn, Maria Freese, Heide Lukosch

(120 min) Drawing Room

15:00 Afternoon tea
15:30

Paper session 4: 

Sustainability

Chaired by Miranda Verswijvelen (Learningworld Design, New Zealand)

(90 min) Lecture Hall

Thematic activity workshop 3:

Culture Identity exploration though Educational Escape Room

Weronika Zuzanna Szatkowska, Małgorzata Ćwil

(90 min) Drawing Room 

Workshop G:

Some Sordid Stories from the History of Playing Cards – and how and why we still use them

Elyssebeth Ellen Leigh, Elizabeth Tipton

(90 min) Workshop Room 

17:00 Travel time to CBD (self-organized, e.g., bus no 3, no 29)
18:30 Welcome Reception
Mr. Brightside Rooftop Bar
(Registered Participants 20+ years only)
20:30 End of the day

Wednesday (10th July)

08:30 Registration open
09:00

Keynote 3:

Augmented Reality Games for Community Engagement

Melanie Langlotz, CEO Geo AR Games

10:00 Morning tea
10:30

Paper session 5:

Learning

Chaired by Małgorzata Ćwil (Kozminski University, Poland)

(90 min) Lecture Hall 

Workshop H:

Simulation Gaming Meets Immersive Virtual Reality

Ulrike Mascher, David Fernes, Alexander Tillmann

(120 min) Drawing Room 

Workshop I:

Does the SOLUTRE serious game, dealing with territorial planning and governance in an emblematic region of France, work in other geographical and cultural contexts?

Nicolas Becu, Damien Marage, Anne Jegou, David Simiand, Benedicte Reyssat, Brice Anselme

(120 min) Workshop Room 

12:30 Lunch
13:30 Travel time (Bus)
14:00 Social program

Thursday (11th July)

08:30 Registration open
09:00

Keynote 4:

Applied Games in New Zealand

Carl Leduq, Chair New Zealand Game Developers‘ Association – NZGDA

10:00 Morning tea
10:30

Paper session 6:

Player experience

Chaired by Willy Christian Kriz (FHV University, Austria)

(90 min) Lecture Hall

Thematic session 2:

Entertainment games beyond entertainment: How the design of fun video games can also be impactful

Tim McKenzie

(90 min) Workshop Room

Workshop A-2:

Facilitator of the Future – Influence of Immersive Technologies on the Facilitation of Simulation Games – Part 2

Maria Freese, Birgit Zuern, Heide Lukosch

(90 min) Drawing Room

12:00 Lunch
13:00 HITLabNZ Open Day and NZ Games exhibition
15:00 Afternoon tea
15:30 ISAGA Member Meeting
Drawing Room
17:00 Travel time (Bus)
18:00 Conference Dinner
Sign of the Takahe Restaurant
Cashmere, Christchurch
21:00 Travel time (Bus)
21:30 End of the day

Friday (12th July)

08:30 Registration open
09:00

Keynote 5:

Soon to be announced

10:00 Morning tea
10:30

Paper session 7:

Teaching & Education

Chaired by Nicolas Becu (CNRS-UMR LIENSs, France)

(90 min) Lecture Hall 

 

Thematic Activity Workshop 4:

Game Changer: Mastering Facilitation in Gaming and Simulation – A Hands-On Workshop

Bryann Avendano, Elyssebeth Leigh, Laurie L. Levesque

(90 min) Workshop Room 

Workshop J:

Incorporating games into the tertiary curricula: HOHI 1816, a case study

Ruth Lemon, Richard Durham

(120 min) Drawing Room

12:30 Lunch
13:30 Wrap-up action, traditional closure and ISAGA tree-planting ceremony in front of the Rātā building
14:30 End of the conference

Keynotes:

Monday (8th July) 10:30-11:00

Heide Lukosch

Heide Lukosch

Human Interface Technology Laboratory, University of Canterbury

Maria Freese

Maria Freese

Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg, Germany

Keynote 1:

Keynote Action

Abstract:

Join the welcome session and let us surprise you!

Bio:

Heide Lukosch, Human Interface Technology Lab NZ, University of Canterbury

Immersive technologies like virtual and augmented reality in relationship with game elements have the true power to extend the boundaries of the physical world. They allow us to wander, to wonder, to see the unseen, to learn, to connect… I am a dedicated designer, researcher and teacher of immersive games to empower people to understand the challenges of our complex world, and to develop new and innovative solutions. Be it new, generative ways of tourism, playful learning of natural hazards and related emergency preparedness actions, or teaching of relational skills in Education and Health settings. I balance this amazement of technology with a deep connection to nature and people.

Tuesday (9th July) 9:00-9:45

Tom Logan

Tom Logan

Civil and Natural Resources Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Canterbury

Keynote 2:

Unlocking Community Resilience through Simulation: Lessons and opportunities from the Resilience Explorer

Abstract:

Climate change adaptation is a pressing challenge that demands innovative approaches to engage communities, businesses, and local governments in understanding and mitigating risks. In this keynote, I will present my work on the Resilience Explorer, a pioneering platform that combines 3D geospatial visualization and simulation capabilities to create a “digital twin” of socio-technical-natural systems. This immersive environment, akin to SimCity, enables stakeholders to explore and interrogate their risk from climate change and natural hazards, fostering informed decision-making and proactive action. Through interactive scenarios and simulations, users can visualize the potential impacts of various adaptation strategies, empowering them to develop and refine effective resilience plans.

Beyond the Resilience Explorer, I will delve into the broader potential of simulations and games as powerful tools for climate change adaptation and community engagement. These immersive experiences can transcend disciplinary boundaries, connect diverse stakeholders, and foster a shared understanding of complex challenges. By creating safe spaces for experimentation and exploration, simulations and games can catalyze creative problem-solving, encourage collaborative learning, and facilitate the co-creation of innovative solutions. Through case studies and real-world examples, I will highlight the transformative potential of these approaches in bridging the gap between scientific knowledge and community-driven action, ultimately contributing to the development of more resilient and sustainable communities.

Bio:

Dr Logan is an expert in risk analysis, specialising in natural hazard resilience and climate change adaptation. He holds a PhD in risk analysis from the University of Michigan, is the Technical Director at Urban Intelligence, and is a Rutherford Discovery Fellow at the University of Canterbury. He leads internationally acclaimed research focusing on the intersection of risk, resilience, and our climate change response. 

Wednesday (10th July) 9:00-10:00

Melanie Langlotz

Melanie Langlotz

CEO Geo AR Games,

Keynote 3:

Augmented Reality Games for Community

Abstract:

Coming Soon!

Bio:

Melanie Langlotz is the founder and CEO of the Auckland based technology studio Geo AR Games. She has developed community engagement tools for cities around the world drawing from her extensive background of working with the public sector. Her digital Augmented Reality playground Magical Park was the 1st of its kind in the world and became a flagship of global collaboration. Melanie is passionate about empowering communities through technology and helping cities around the world to stretch their development budgets further.  A steady interest in global collaboration and problem solving stimulated a new “pay-it- forward” business model which assists cities in getting their environmental messages out into their community.

Thursday (11th July) 9:00-10:00

Carl Leducq

Carl Leducq

NZGDA Chair & NZ Games Producer

Keynote 4:

Follow the Flow – Understanding How Games Make Learning Easier, And How Interactive Experiences Are Building Our Future

Abstract:

Coming Soon!

Bio:

Passionate about propelling the New Zealand games industry forward, Carl brings a decade of experience as a Games Producer & QA Analyst and an unwavering passion to grow the industry here in Aotearoa. His track record spans multiple platforms & technologies, including Mobile, AR, PC, and the cutting-edge realm of Web3. Through this journey, he has worked at some of New Zealand’s largest and most successful game studios such as Gameloft Auckland, Weta Workshop, Rocketwerkz, and now Futureverse, where he is currently based. Beyond his role as a Project Manager at Futureverse, Carl is deeply involved in nurturing the game development community in New Zealand. Currently serving his fourth term as a Board Member of the NZGDA and first term as Chairperson, Carl plays a key strategic role in shaping the Association’s public image, advocating and lobbying for industry interests with government, and driving a strong industry presence through local and national events. Carl’s boundless enthusiasm for the games industry is clear in his attitude and willingness to support anyone who crosses his path. He has a burning desire and belief that the industry will skyrocket in the coming years and plans to continue exploring, learning, and supporting every facet of the industry.

Friday (12th July)

Soon to be announced

Soon to be announced

Keynote 5:

Coming Soon!

Abstract:

Coming Soon!

Bio:

Coming Soon!

Paper Presentations:

The paper presentations are spread across all 5 conference days.

Monday 8th of July:

Paper Session1: Simulation & Gaming (90 min)

Chaired by Toshiko Kikkawa (Keio University, Japan)

Lecture Hall (11:30-13:00)

    • Understanding Behavioral Differences between Machine Agents and Human Participants Based on How They Play the Energy Transition Game
      Kengo Suzuki, Yuta Nakadegawa, Kento Miura, Takeshi Shibuya, Susumu Ohnuma
    Abstract

    This study investigates the behavioral differences between machine agents and human participants when they play the same game. We aim to experimentally clarify the advantages and disadvantages of agent-based simulation (ABS) and gaming simulation (GS) and to identify the suitability of each method for various types of research topics. A multi-player game, which models the energy technology selection and price competition of energy companies in a liberalized market, was implemented via ABS and GS under two conditions: with and without carbon tax conditions. The machine agents identified better strategies of energy technology selection in the without-tax condition, whereas the human participants identified better strategies in the with-tax condition. In terms of price competition, the behaviors of machine agents were adaptive and rational, whereas those of human participants were not. These results suggest that the ABS is suitable for determining relatively simple strategies and investigating the adaptive behavior under strategic situations; conversely, the GS is suitable for investigating the real behaviors of humans in relatively complex situations and for inferring the socio-political failures caused by their psychological aspects.

    • Simulating Complex Adaptive Software System Technical Debt
      David Gould, Tim French, Melinda Hodkiewicz
    Abstract

    Long term impacts of shortcuts and compromises taken during software development are described by the metaphor Technical Debt (TD). TD is an emerging business issue in modern interdependent software systems, such as highly automated Remote Operations Centers (ROC’s) used to operate industrial equipment more than 1200 kilometers away in the Australian outback. Recognising and managing TD in these complex adaptive software systems is challenging. This paper builds on advances Serious Games have made toward improving situational awareness, applying these lessons to TD. The prototype Serious Game TD-Sim is tested with employees working in a ROC. Thematic analysis is used to assess pre- and post-game impacts on situational awareness of TD and this is triangulated with in-game information trails. A baseline efficacy of improved TD awareness is established, sufficient to warrant further game development. Results also identify areas for improving future game design. This study is unique, applying a Serious Game to build awareness of TD in complex adaptive software systems, something yet to be covered by traditional TD research.

    • Pratiti …becoming aware: Promoting Simulations and Games on a Global Platform
      Jigyasu Dubey, Elyssebeth Ellen Leigh, Vinod Dumblekar, Upinder Dhar, Anand Rajavat
    Abstract

    Conferences and seminars have been the traditional way of sharing new ideas and expanding our connections within – and across – disciplines. Webinars are a comparatively new addition to the modes of communication and the series titled Pratiti …becoming aware has grown into a rich and valuable set of resources for simulationists around the world. This article describes the motives for beginning the series at a University in India, and reviews the feedback received from participants of 53 one-hour-long presentations on simulations and games between October 2020 and December 2023. It reports on the process of establishing the series, describes some of the challenges encountered, summarizes highlights of the webinars and identifies possible opportunities that may arise. The authors recommend that future webinars should cover topics of interest of university students, while inviting more female speakers and speakers from USA and Australasia.

    Facilitated discussion (30min)

    Tuesday 9th of July:

    Paper Session 2: Facilitation (90 min)

    Chaired by Birgit Zuern (DHBW Stuttgart, Germany)

    Lecture Hall (10:30-12:00)

    • Crossing Borders by Revisiting Ethical Issues of Simulation and Gaming
      Willy Christian Kriz, Mieko Nakamura, Toshiko Kikkawa
    Abstract

    This paper explores the ethical issues of Simulation and Gaming. Although there has been an extensive discussion on this topic, it has recently gained increasing relevance within a time of defying borders. Therefore, a reexamination of these topics from this new point of view becomes necessary. Firstly, the importance of this research is further elaborated on. When we refer to a border, we may imagine a country’s border. However, we have created many kinds of “borders” around us, for instance the dividing lines we have drawn and continue to draw between different cultures or gender identities. The need for defying and crossing these self-imposed “borders” has become clearly evident in a world full of diversity. The issue of crossing and overcoming these boundaries can then be interpreted as to how sustainably and appropriately we deal with this diversity. Managing diversity thus becomes increasingly ethical issue also for the discipline of Gaming Simulation. In the paper, the presented ethical viewpoints are explored from three perspectives, namely the ones of game design, game facilitation and debriefing, and game content. Lastly, we conclude with some proposals for the Simulation and Gaming community based on our discussion.

    • Theory informing Practice – theorizing good facilitation practice
      Elyssebeth Ellen Leigh, Laurie L Levesque
    Abstract

    While being a competent facilitator is accepted as a vital skill for effective use of simulations and games for learning, the theory behind good practice is less often examined critically. This paper considers theories underlying the what and why of enactment of facilitation, drawing on work from fields as diverse as adult learning, knowledge management, philosophy, physics and organisational behaviour. It explores relationships among these theories as presented in the book ‘Facilitating Simulations’ (Edward Elgar, in press 2024) and introduces a framework for exploring some of the connections – and gaps – between theory and practice to identify and promote means of bridging gaps between theoretical formulations of concepts and practical applications of resulting propositions. Key concepts include tracking learning journeys from novice to expert, developing a preparedness mindset, clarifying underlying values and beliefs informing familiar modes of education, factors influencing curriculum design, and ways in which knowledge creation is modelled and managed. For facilitators who find they are already unconsciously enacting many of these precepts, becoming consciously aware can improve practice. Conversely newcomers to facilitation can find ideas for shaping behaviour to better accord with good practice requirements.

    • The Impact of Participants Motivation and Playfulness for the Facilitation of Simulation Games
      Friedrich Trautwein, Tobias Alf
    Abstract

    Motivation is often seen as a key factor for learning and due to their special approach playfulness might be of special importance for simulation games lectures. Therefore this paper evaluates the impact of students’ motivation and playfulness on learning and lecturing with simulation games using quantitative methods. Based on three different questionnaires on motivation, playfulness and teaching with simulation games data was gathered in three simulation game seminars (n=49). In addition, the share price as in game success factor is used. Measuring key variables at four different times during a 3-day-semulation game seminar, a longitudinal study was conducted.

    Key questions were how different components of motivation developed over the course of simulation game seminars and whether individual components of motivation influence the course and results of them. In addition, it was examined, whether the question on motivation within the ZMS inventory can be externally validated and whether participants’ playfulness influence the simulation game seminars.

    It is found that student motivation impacts teaching with simulation games in various ways while playfulness has no impact on the educational process of simulation game-based teaching.

    Facilitated discussion (30min)

    Paper Session 3: Design and development (90 min)

    Chaired by Elyssebeth Leigh (University of Technology Sydney, Australia)

    Lecture Hall (13:00-14:30)

    • A Framework for Co-Design of Edu Escape-Room Aimed at Exploring Cultural Identity
      Weronika Zuzanna Szatkowska, Małgorzata Ćwil, Blanka Barbara Błaszczak-Rozenbaum
    Abstract

    The paper gathers the current knowledge and trends in educational escape rooms and co-design practices, linking them to the discussion on the application of these two concepts in the context of participatory game design. It explores the benefits of applying an escape room experience to reflect on cultural identity while indicating the benefits of the application of co-design methodology to develop such an experience under inclusive conditions.   

    In this paper, we propose a framework to co-design educational escape rooms, based on the experience from the project The Inheritor – the development of an edu escape room to explore cultural identities. As an outcome, we explain pragmatically the main stages adapted from the co-design methodology enriched with game design elements. We explain the roles of the co-designers that emerged during the process and propose a framework to co-design escape room experiences with them. The area was particularly challenging due to references not only to the existing systems and connections but also to the past events and social relations that influenced the current perception of the “cultural self”, which we aimed to address within this framework. 

    • Accounting for psychological safety in serious game and simulation design
      Dale Nicholas Linegar, Gillian Marie Vesty
    Abstract

    Serious games and simulations are increasingly used in fields such as education, healthcare, defence and business training.  Serious games and simulations transcend entertainment games, by offering a platform to engage with complex issues in a safe, controlled environment.  However there are also risks associated with serious games and simulations, such as those posed to the psychological safety of learners. 

    In relation to games or simulations, psychological safety refers to being able to engage without fear of negative personal consequences.  How do you ensure that a serious game or simulation is safe, and fosters a sense of security and trust?

    This paper explores the ways that psychological safety can be considered when designing a serious game.  By synthesising insights gathered from interviews with multiple acclaimed serious game developers with the current literature regarding psychological safety in serious game and simulation design, specific frameworks, approaches and challenges are examined.  By examining these issues, this paper aims to increase the understanding of how various aspects of simulation and game design can impact psychological safety.

    • Co-Designing an Applied Game about Volcanic Hazards for a Bi-Cultural Environment: 5 Minute Volcano
      Kieron Wall, Heide Lukosch, Simon Hoermann, Kathryn MacCallum, Ben Kennedy
    Abstract

    This paper describes how applied games can be designed to communicate volcanic tsunami risk in the bi-cultural environment of Aotearoa (New Zealand). Background research shows that children are vulnerable to natural hazards, yet crucial in risk communication. Previous research shows that applied games can be developed to help children learn, yet the research gaps are extensive without evidence on designing effective risk communication interventions. We worked with a local school to co-design an applied game for school children about tsunami risk communication and evacuation strategies. The children engaged in workshops, through exploratory observational and qualitative interview methods. The prototype 5-Minute Volcano was designed, incorporating Māori and Western cultural aspects. We performed an additional user study and observed a group of four children and a teacher playing the game, and the collected data was used to determine how applied games could be designed and used for learning and risk reduction.

    Facilitated discussion (30min)

    Paper Session 4: Sustainability (90 min)

    Chaired by Miranda Verswijvelen (Learning world Design, New Zealand)

    Lecture Hall (15:30-17:00)

    • How does evaluating the effects of a participatory simulation raise questions about the design intentions of participatory processes that may involve simulation/gaming?
      Amélie Monfort
    Abstract

    Simulation/gaming, such as participatory simulation, are commonly devel-oped and utilized to support social and ecological transitions. However, the growing interest in these methods is accompanied by challenges related to evaluating and demonstrating tangible effects for potential change. Assess-ments often lack objective evidence and primarily rely on empirical observa-tions. When conducted, studies predominantly focus on evaluating the de-sign and highlight limited effects, often short-term and centered on knowledge acquisition, falling short of the assigned ambitions to simula-tion/gaming. Many works attempt to explain these outcomes in relation to the design of these methods and/or by using analytical frameworks involving numerous process and contextual variables. In this brief contribution, re-flecting an ongoing reflection, we explore a hypothesis centered on the de-sign intentions of the process, based on the analysis of limited effects of a participatory simulation on the risk of coastal flooding (LittoSIM-GEN). We highlight effects primarily in the short-term and focused on the cognitive dimension, not entirely aligning with the initial goals of the participatory simulation. The lack of (re)definition of design intentions in terms of objec-tives, target audience, status and key concepts of the process emerges as a particularly enlightening lead that we will further explore in our future research.

    • Digital Veggie Mart Game for Nutritional Education and Sustainable Food Supply Chain
      Mizuho Sato, Hajime Mizuyama
    Abstract

    In 2015, the UN General Assembly unanimously adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Target 12.3 states the following: “By 2030, halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels and reduce food losses along production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses.” To create a sustainable society, reducing food waste and disposal throughout the Food Supply Chain (FSC) is necessary. Reducing the loss of vegetables and fruits is essential because they account for a significant proportion of losses and waste at each stage of distribution, retail, and consumption. In contrast, increasing the intake of vegetables and fruits is crucial for health. However, increasing vegetable intake is often challenging, and without proper utilization, vegetables can be wasted. Therefore, this study designed a digital game based on the vegetable supply chain to enhance consumer health awareness, increase vegetable intake, and develop a sustainable food supply chain.

    • Analyzing relationship to nature within a game frame: proposal and application of a conceptual framework and its evaluation method
      Éléonore Sas, Nicolas Becu
    Abstract

    The dualistic paradigm of human-nature relationship prevailing in Western societies, here referred to as “classic modern Western” (CMW) relationship to nature, has become a conceptual prison when faced with ecological crises. Simulation games can be useful artifacts for transforming a player’s apprehension of such subject. Therefore, the research presented here is part of a thesis seeking to help one deconstruct its CMW relationship to nature by playing a simulation game. To achieve this, it is essential to be able to observe the presence and patterns of expression of the dimensions composing the CMW relationship within the game. However, to our knowledge, there is no such conceptual framework specific to games. Therefore, this paper aims to present for the first time a conceptual framework of the main dimensions of the CMW relationship, within a game frame, and to experience its evaluation method on players. The presented exploratory research crosses borders of scientific disciplines, spanning both human geography and design sciences, and drawing insights from other humanities. Starting with a multidisciplinary literature overview, this article describes the process and result of synthesizing the dimensions of the CMW relationship to nature. The conceptual framework obtained leads to a methodological approach, grounded in the case study My Spot of Sea, to observe these dimensions among players, considering design effects. Finally, results from applying this method to game sessions with middle school students are presented and discussed.

    Facilitated discussion (30min)

    Wednesday 10th of July:

    Paper Session 5: Learning (90 min)

    Chaired by Małgorzata Ćwil (Kozminski University, Poland)

    Lecture Hall (10:30-12:00)

    • Where to begin? Integrating Simulation and Indigenous knowledge to create new approaches
      Cat Kutay, Pavan Kumar Menugonda, Christian Gio Biag Lizada, Elyssebeth Leigh
    Abstract

    Developing programs using Participatory Action Research can be assisted by considering the delivery as working within Cynefin domains of alternating shared and specialist knowledge. This provides a way of planning and preparing resources for that is a fluid process requiring sensitivity to the aspirations and engagement of other cultures. This paper looks at using this approach for training in game making in remote Aboriginal communities.

    We consider the resources available for each domain of approach to support the training in either specialist knowledge. Given the use of Ai in creating resources for game making and the open sharing of material which removes many barriers to entry into the area of game making, it is timely to be researching how to engage those with creative ideas in controlling their own game development.

    The analysis provides a way to monitor the progress of training and to assist in moving from one complex or complicated domain to another with ease, and with awareness of what is suitable and supported at any time.

    • Machinaka Campus: Large-Scale Gaming Trial for Youth
      Ryoju Hamada, Tomomi Kaneko
    Abstract

    Gaming simulation is considered a miniature garden of a complex society. Most Gaming Simulation researchers had yet to learn to gather thousands of participants. In the case of Asahikawa city, Hokkaido, Japan, as a member of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network, hosted the whole city learning events called Machinaka Campus (MCAN, City Center Campus in English) in 2022 and 2023. It aims to provide an opportunity to present their inquiry-based learning, which is obligated to Japanese high school students. The authors invited those students who desired to demonstrate their works, and 36 exhibitions were collected. The authors printed and delivered 27,000 leaflets to all pupils in the city and hosted a stamp rally with those exhibitions on the pedestrian-only road in the city center. 63,000 people participated in this learning event. Some derivative movements came out from MCAN without the authors’ control. MCAN might be a rare example of extraordinary large-scale gaming, which has been considered impossible.

    • Conflicted Courses: a matrix game for course design
      Richard Durham, Ruth Lemon
    Abstract

    Course and program design is a complex scenario with multiple stakeholders, with different goals for the course or program, including learning outcomes, workload requirements, and space utilisation. Head of Schools, for instance, must look at a course in regards to how its learning outcomes relate to the rest of the program, workload requirements, space utilised, and so on. Whereas the Teaching Assistant’s focus is on how long it will take to complete the marking. Matrix games are used to simulate complex scenarios, such as designing a robust cybersecurity response policy, identifying possible paths of peace in conflicts, and recreating historical scenarios in education to better understand the decision-making at the time. Conflicted Courses is a matrix game designed around the scenario of course design. The primary learning objectives are for players to: produce a skeleton of a potential course that considers the balance of stakeholder goals. Secondly, to critique the goals of stakeholders in the game in relation to their real-life contexts. This game is intended for staff at educational institutions that engage in curriculum design. Conflicted Courses contributes to the field by introducing simulation and gaming to the course design domain using games as a design tool.

    Facilitated discussion (30min)

    Thursday 11th of July:

    Paper Session 6: Player experience (90 min)

    Chaired by Nicolas Becu (CNRS-UMR LIENSs, France)

    Lecture Hall (10:30-12:00)

    • Navigating Uncertainty: The Emergence of Effort and Emotion in Tabletop Games
      Shruti Agrawal, Girish Dalvi
    Abstract

    Uncertainty is a core aspect of games; it shapes gameplay dynamics and influences players’ experiences. Several dimensions of uncertainty have been studied, such as its relation to player engagement and motivation, sources, levels, and degrees. However, the relationship of uncertainty with effort and emotions that emerge as players navigate unpredictable game states remains underexplored. This study employs a qualitative methodology with eight players to examine the association between uncertainty and effort-emotion duo, analyzing two tabletop games, “Splendor” and “Azul.” Based on collected data, we introduce adverb-verb phrases to capture players’ emotions and mental exertions. Since uncertainty is a pervasive element in gameplay, it is challenging to attribute a particular emotion or the nature of mental effort solely to a specific kind of uncertainty. Hence, we group it into three distinct yet interconnected categories: continuous uncertainty, stage-specific uncertainty, and cumulative uncertainty. Our findings indicate that player emotions and efforts in tabletop games are neither static nor predictable based on game outcomes alone. Instead, they exhibit dynamic trajectories, fluctuating in response to the changing uncertainties. By highlighting the associations between uncertainty, effort, and emotion, this study offers a granular understanding of player experiences, underscoring the necessity of considering these elements in game design and analysis.

    • Enhancing Fair Play in Online Gaming: The Development and Implementation of the No More Cheats Anti-Cheat System
      Michał Jakubowski, Małgorzata Ćwil, Weronika Szatkowska
    Abstract

    The integrity of competitive online gaming and esports is increasingly compromised by the prevalence of cheating, a multifaceted problem that undermines fair play and diminishes the gaming experience for honest players. This paper provides a comprehensive overview of cheating in online gaming, tracing its evolution from the inception of video games to the current landscape dominated by sophisticated online multiplayer environments. Through an exploratory qualitative study involving semi-structured interviews with 30 gamers, predominantly male, from Poland, we delve into the motivations behind cheating, the various forms it takes, and the impact on the gaming community. Our findings highlight the most common and disruptive cheats, such as aimbots and wallhacks, and the psychological and material motivations driving players to exploit these unfair advantages. Furthermore, we assess the effectiveness of existing anti-cheat measures and propose the “No More Cheats” system, a conceptual framework for a more effective and less intrusive anti-cheat solution. The study emphasizes the need for ongoing innovation in anti-cheat technology, incorporating advanced detection algorithms and ethical considerations to maintain the integrity of competitive online gaming and esports. Through this discussion, we aim to contribute to the development of more sophisticated, fair, and transparent anti-cheat systems, ensuring a level playing field and preserving the spirit of competition that is fundamental to the gaming experience.

    • Feedback and Biofeedback procedure and results, based on the Gearshfit engine
      Błażej Podgórski, Marcin Wardaszko
    Abstract

    Over the past few years, video games have emerged as a predominant form of entertainment and a vital aspect of social and leisure activities (Griffiths and Hunt, 1995). Market Research Future projects a staggering valuation of nearly 14 trillion dollars for the industry by the year 2030. The surge in both user base and anticipated profits reflects the substantial growth experienced in the realm of video games. With a profound impact on younger generations, video games have seamlessly integrated into their daily lives, with gamers dedicating considerable time and effort to playing (Gentile and Anderson, 2003; Lenhart et al., 2005). Particularly noteworthy is the significance of video games for individuals without a driving license, as racing games provide them with a platform to engage in competitive experiences and gain insights into car mechanics.

    The primary objective of this project was to develop an innovative vehicle behavior engine within a dynamic global gaming environment. This engine, once created, will serve as a versatile tool, enabling any development team utilizing the Unreal engine to craft advanced games centered around motorization. The development of the engine encompasses various aspects, including (1) suspension physics, focusing on overload parameters, (2) tire physics, incorporating pressure adjustments (Garatti and Bittanti, 2009; Pacejka, 2012), (3) brake behavior and performance, derived from telemetry results involving brake pedal pressure, brake fluid pressure, speed, and distance (Langhof et al., 2016), (4) drive ratio, involving measurements of gear ratio, acceleration, and overloads (G parameter measurement), (5) engine parameters, such as water and oil temperature, acceleration, and torque (Li et al., 2016), (6) adhesion parameters on specific surfaces, including slip parameters resulting from loss of adhesion (Abe, 2015), and (7) GPS position in relation to the track (Balkwill, 2018).

    In this paper, we present the results of perception tests and share our perspective on the most effective methodology for this type of research and testing.

    The research employed a quasi-experimental method (Creswell, 2012). It was conducted across three groups of research facilities. The first group comprised drivers with rally licenses, the second group included professional players, and the third group involved casual players, totaling no less than 30 participants in each wave of research. The research took the form of collecting biofeedback data and administering surveys covering demographic information, game usage, and game engine perception.

    Facilitated discussion (30min)

    Friday 12th of July:

    Paper Session 7: Teaching & Education (90 min)

    Chaired by Willy Christian Kriz (FHV University, Austria)

    Lecture Hall (10:30-12:00)

    • Epistemological Obstacles in Teaching Based on Business Simulation in Mozambique
      Gildo Cossa, Bráulio Alturas, Ana Pinto, Licinio Roque
    Abstract

    In today’s world, information technologies have become crucial in the teaching process to facilitate learning. This process is notable for the use of images, analogies, models, metaphors, videos, and other tools. One methodology that has been widely used in this process but is relatively understudied in Mozambique is Business Games (BG) or Business Simulation (BS) or Business Simulation Project (BSP), which international literature unanimously advocates for its effectiveness in the teaching and learning process [1], [2].

    This research seeks to identify the epistemological obstacles that this methodology faces in Higher Education Institutions in Mozambique, particularly in undergraduate business science courses. The epistemological obstacle has its origins in the work of Gaston Bachelard, which allows questioning how content is transmitted by teachers in the teaching process. Bachelard’s study questions the use of experiments (as in the case of Business Simulation), analogies, images, models, metaphors, and how teachers deal with students’ prior knowledge (common knowledge) acquired in everyday life.

    However, in this research, we intend to reflect on the effectiveness of Business Simulation projects in Mozambique, which have become popular in the last 10 years, partly as a mandatory requirement by the National Council for Quality Assessment (CNAQ) and partly due to the growing preference of companies to employ students who have completed this unit. The requirement of utilization by accrediting entities of business schools, such as AACSB (Association for Advance Collegiate Schools of Business), has been one of the reasons for its increasing use [1]. The analysis of effectiveness will be carried out by identifying epistemological obstacles.

    This article aims to identify the epistemological obstacles of teaching based on Business Simulation and is divided into five parts, namely: the first part provides a theoretical background on Business Simulation, the second part discusses epistemological obstacles from Gaston Bachelard’s perspective, the third part covers the practice of Business Simulation in Mozambique, the fourth part explores the epistemological obstacles of Business Simulation, and finally, the conclusion.

    • The Impact of Simulation Games on the Success of Simulation Game Courses
      Friedrich Trautwein, Tobias Alf
    Abstract

    Whereas the majority of empirical studies in the field of simulation and gaming are based on one specific simulation game, this study includes a broad range of mostly business-related simulation games. Looking across the border of a single simulation game this article analysis, what are general aspects of simulations games that have an impact on the success of simulation game courses.

    To do this, we evaluated courses that were taught with 33 different simulation games and collected feedback from more than 3000 participants. 

    The study shows good values for the comprehensibility of simulation games on the one hand, while on the other hand the practical relevance is rated lower. Due to the fact that both aspects are of central importance for the success of simulation game courses, more emphasis should especially be given to illustrate the practical relevance of simulation games. In addition, the study shows, that there are several significant differences between computer-based and haptic simulation games. Nevertheless, the differences are of no practical importance with respect to satisfaction and learning. Furthermore, the study shows, that overall the difficulty of simulation games and how they are facilitated fits for the participants: While the difficulty is exactly right for roughly 80% of participants, it is rather too low or rather too high in each case for roughly 10%.

    • How Entrepreneurs Learn about Artificial Intelligence by Using an Analogue Card Game
      Maria Freese, Birgit Zuern, Helmut Wittenzellner
    Abstract

    This article emphasizes the importance of entrepreneurship education in today’s volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous world. In order to effectively handle the challenges of our time, it is crucial that entrepreneurship education fosters the development of competencies that enable entrepreneurs to cope with artificial intelligence by enabling them to critically explore challenges and opportunities. One effective approach to achieve this is through the use of serious games. This article presents an overview of different types of serious games and their potential benefits for learning about artificial intelligence. It then focuses on ‘Cards for Entrepreneurship’, an analogue serious game which aims to stimulate the creative and critical thinking of entrepreneurs in relation to artificial intelligence by letting them actively think about challenges and opportunities. As part of a workshop, participants, engaged in both a rapid prototyping and a game play phase, were developing and playing ‘Cards for Entrepreneurship’. This approach was evaluated with a pre- and post-questionnaire, which revealed that the participants experienced an increase in their familiarity with artificial intelligence. Also, during the workshop a high level of flow, serious fun, and productive dialogues were observed. Future research should address the question of the extent to which artificial intelligence literacy can be developed in this context.

    Facilitated discussion (30min)

    Thematic Sessions:

    Thematic sessions address specific topics of Simulation and Gaming, with panel discussions, paper presentations, and other formats.

    Monday 8th of July:

    Thematic session 1:

    ISAGA Simulation Gaming Competition: its origin, history, and its future (90 min)

    Ryoju Hamada, Tomomi Kaneko

    Workshop Room (11:30-13:00)

    Abstract

    ISAGA has been maintained ISAGA summer school as a tutorial session. However, due to the COVID-19 outbreak, ISS2020 was postponed, and we had to develop a new way to train future simulation gaming developers. The authors invented the new online-based learning opportunity called ISAGA Simulation and Gaming Competition(ISGC) to address this critical situation.

    In this new event, the participants compile game or simulation, submit a document by the specified date. The general secretary print, purchase items by the evaluation date. On the day of competition, the participants are allowed to explain, facilitate, debrief, and have Q&A sessions with the reviewers who are gathered face-to-face in the room. Time is two hours per team. The baby game has a lot of mistakes, facilitation often confuses. That’s the reason that reviewers meet in the real, help together to understand the intention of simulation Gaming. The reviewers play all games within one to two days. The final judgement is based on overall impressions that all reviewers might compromise. Since the target, purpose, methods are diverse, it is extremely difficult to apply united taxonomies in this moment.

    Since ISAGA had no official competition, it matched some potential demands to present their game on the international stage without cost. ISGC has been a stable event within three years in the ISAGA community, but it is not famous, and games are not disclosed. ISGC fostered to develop eight new games and simulations since 2021. 

    In this thematic session, the authors will show the ideas contained in ISGC and provide an opportunity for the past participants to present their ideas briefly, from Japan, Poland, Sweden, and Thailand.

    Tuesday 9th of July:

    Thematic activity workshop 1:

    From hobby to professional - creating pipelines for gamers to unlock talent (90 min)

    Dan Epstein

    Workshop Room (10:30-12:00)

    Abstract

    Hobby gamers have skills that should be considered a strategic resource. Unlocking this talent and capturing this value should be a strategic priority.

    This workshop delves into the innovative approach and methodologies employed by our organisation to identify, nurture, and transition talents within the gaming community into professional settings. Our initiative stands at the forefront of transforming gaming from a hobby to a significant avenue for professional growth and skill acquisition, unlocking latent talent and thinking about hobbyist gamers as an unused strategic resource.

    Our approach integrates a comprehensive framework that assesses individual competencies, tailors educational interventions and provides a supportive ecosystem for continuous development. We explore the dynamics of tabletop gaming as a microcosm for real-world problem-solving, highlighting how these environments serve as fertile ground for developing critical thinking, adaptability, and strategy skills that can be value-captured.

    Furthermore, we discuss the implementation of a structured pipeline that guides hobbyists through the journey from casual engagement to professional competency. This includes the development of a competency matrix, a curriculum mapped to skill mastery, professional recognition, a database of talent and strategic partnerships with industry stakeholders to facilitate career transitions.

    We illustrate the potential of gaming as a tool for professional development, challenging traditional perceptions and opening new pathways for talent discovery and utilisation. By creating structured pathways from hobby to professional, we unlock talent, foster innovation, and skill acquisition. Industry professionals and policymakers should reconsider the role of gaming in professional development and talent management strategies.

    Thematic activity workshop 2:

    Laddering activity for drawing out aligned serious game outcomes and game goals (120 min)

    Richard Durham

    Workshop Room (13:00-15:00)

    Abstract

    An important feature for effective serious games is the good alignment of the persuasive goal with the in-game goals and player activities. In the critical step of determining why a serious game is being made, I present a simple Laddering activity while discussing the reasons for a game-model In the process, the nested “why’s” for the game are revealed, which will translate to the in-game goals. This activity also provides shortcuts to identify potential in-game tasks and challenges.

    In this 2 hour workshop you will see a worked example of the activity, and practice in groups to design the high-level alignment map for a serious game. This workshop is good for educators, learning designers, and serious game designers familiar with basic constructive alignment, and wanting a qualitative tool to generate aligned persuasive and in-game goals.

    Also a useful workshop for design researchers.

    • Unpack a learning problem to find the values that will drive game goals
    • Translate the external goals into engaging game challenges.
    • Weave together the values, learning goals, and skills into actions in a game.
    • Walk away with a practical tool and a framework for leading a discussion on the design of a game-based learning experience.

    Thematic activity workshop 3:

    Culture identity exploration though educational escape room (90 min)

    Weronika Zuzanna Szatkowska, Małgorzata Ćwil

    Drawing Room (15:30-17:00)

    Abstract

    Edu escape rooms promote creative, collective problem-solving, and boost experiential, embodied learning process. During the workshop, we will introduce a serious game in the form of an educational escape room – The Inheritor. The game is based on breakout boxes co-designed under cooperation between KU, NGO Salam Lab, and the intercultural community of Polish inhabitants Ukrainian migrants, Ukrainian minorities in Poland, Polish citizens, Jews, Catholics, and Orthodox Catholics. The main theme is identity beyond national borders and its shades which are shaped by the influence of interpersonal relationships, historical events, and tough choices.

    Players will take on the role of new employees of the Unsolved Cases Agency and try to discover whether there is any living inheritor of their very wealthy client. They will investigate a box with his sentimental souvenirs, which will open up a journey through different eras, countries, and cultures. In the debriefing we will refer to our own cultural identities, the process of identification and sensemaking, and the personal meanings of the experienced game, leading to questions about who are we, and whether the national borders define us. 

    Together we will explore the roots of various cultural identities of the inhabitants of Poland and reflect upon the understanding of cultural diversity as a way to fight stereotypes. In addition, as the client (NGO) required an ethical approach to the whole process and the involvement of actors relevant to the stories, we will briefly discuss the development of a new serious game co-design framework applied during the process.

    Thursday 11th of July:

    Thematic session 2:

    Entertainment games beyond entertainment: How the design of fun video games can also be impactful (90 min)

    Tim McKenzie

    Workshop Room (10:30-12:00)

    Abstract

    Design elements of commercial games that made them entertaining while also transformative, impactful, or educational.

    Session Objectives:

    • Presentation of commercial video games that have intended or unintended transformative value beyond entertainment or fun
    • Discussion of the design goals, principles, values, mechanics, and choices which enabled these games to have greater emotional engagement, intellectual depth, memorability, and impact.
    • Exploration of how these design elements could be applied to non-entertainment games/simulations

    Target Audience:

    Simulation Gaming designers who want to understand what entertainment design elements can enhance their own interactive experiences.

    Session Type:

    Panel Discussion

    Friday 12th of July:

    Thematic activity workshop 4:

    Game Changer: Mastering Facilitation in Gaming and Simulation - A Hands-On Workshop (90 min)

    Bryann Avendano, Elyssebeth Leigh, Laurie L. Levesque

    Workshop Room (10:30-12:00)

    Abstract

    The exponential increase in gaming and simulation, along with the inclusiveness of VR/AR/XR technologies and participatory modelling, demands effective facilitation if educators and researchers are to foster meaningful discussions and gather data. This workshop offers a broad and interactive exploration of facilitation skills, ethics, and related considerations tailored for game developers and gaming scholars. Participants will delve into some core principles of facilitation, learning how to create inclusive environments that encourage active participation and collaboration. Through a series of engaging activities and discussions, attendees will be offered practical insights into designing facilitation processes for workshops that resonate with diverse gaming audiences.

    We will take participants “behind the scenes” and introduce our design process for modelling respect, empathy, inclusivity and ethical considerations. Participants will explore strategies for managing challenging situations and fostering constructive dialogue within learning environments. This workshop is designed to be both informative and enjoyable, offering participants the opportunity to enhance their facilitation skills while networking with fellow game developers and scholars. Join us for an interactive and insightful session to elevate your workshop facilitation game to new levels.

    1. Takeaways for participants will include
    2. Tools (Observation sheets, reflection notes, research journals) for data collection.
    3. Suggestions for responding when things go wrong?
    4. Guidelines for staying on track (whatever that means) during a workshop?
    5. What are effective strategies for learn from reflecting on events? 

    Our logo is the Mobius Loop with which we frame facilitation and learning as an endless cycle of observing, doing, and reflecting.

    Workshops:

    Workshops allow ISAGA participants to get to know early and mature games, discuss the ideas and applications, and provide feedback. Topics like game mechanics, technologies, or facilitation and debriefing can be discussed. All workshops and demos are interactive in nature.

    Monday 8th of July:

    Workshop A-1:

    Facilitator of the Future – Influence of Immersive Technologies on the Facilitation of Simulation Games – Part 1 (90 min)

    Maria Freese, Birgit Zuern, Heide Lukosch

    Drawing Room (11:30-13:00)

    Abstract

    In times of digital transformation, immersive technologies and artificial intelligence are playing an increasingly important role. Through the use of immersive technologies, a more intensive and realistic world of experience can be created in simulation games. More and more simulation games are integrating virtual reality, augmented reality or other forms of immersive technologies to make in-game experiences more lively and more interactive. To what extent the use of immersive technologies, but also artificial intelligence influences the facilitation of simulation games is still unclear. In recent months, we have already distributed an online questionnaire asking international experts from the Simulation & Gaming field about relevant skills and competencies in relation to the facilitation of simulation games in the light of immersive technologies and artificial intelligence. In this workshop, we would like to work through the results interactively in a setting based on a group Delphi method. The advantage of this method is that it makes a knowledge-based and constructive discussion with an interdisciplinary group of experts possible. Alternating in the form of at least two rounds, results are worked out in groups and discussed in plenary.

    Workshop B:

    Let’s Follow The Road to Happiness (180 min in total)

    Yulduz Alimova, Marcin Opas, Marcin Wardaszko, Lukasz Maciej Wiech

    Part1 (120 min) at Workshop Room (14:00-16:00)
    Part2 (60 min) at Workshop Room (16:30-17:30)

    Abstract

    The workshop “Let’s Follow The Road to Happiness” is tailored to immerse participants in the integration of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into business strategies via an engaging simulation game. Aimed at highlighting SDGs’ pivotal role in fostering business sustainability and growth, this workshop offers a practical learning environment.

    Over a 180-minute session, led by the game’s creator, attendees will navigate “The Road to Happiness” game. This experience simulates real-life business dilemmas, challenging participants to incorporate SDGs into their business frameworks effectively. The workshop begins with an overview of game mechanics, progressing to immersive gameplay where participants, in the role of company managers, strategize on blending SDGs with business viability. The interactive format encourages teamwork, strategic analysis, and participatory design, culminating in a debriefing for reflection and insight sharing.

    Expected outcomes include enriched comprehension of SDGs’ importance in business, alongside acquired strategies for sustainable practice integration. This session aims to shift viewpoints towards viewing SDGs as drivers of business innovation and viability. Participants are expected to depart with enhanced strategic planning abilities and a profound grasp of sustainability’s role in business prosperity.

    Furthermore, the workshop serves as a platform for the author to gain insights into game design and validate “The Road to Happiness” as a tool for SDG education within business strategy. This initiative seeks to affirm the game’s educational significance, promoting strategic SDG integration for business innovation.

    Workshop C:

    Narrative design framework for a virtual patient (180 min in total)

    Miranda Verswijvelen

    Part1 (120 min) at Workshop Room (14:00-16:00)
    Part2 (60 min) at Workshop Room (16:30-17:30)

    Abstract

    Virtual patients, most notably those that focus on non-technical skills (NTS), such as compassion and communication skills, are a complex version of interactive game narrative. The importance of the patient character the learner is in conversation with makes them a very specific type of non-player character (NPC) with a high level of impact on the whole experience.

    In comparison with most game NPC, virtual patients’ level of coherence, psychological realism, emotional impact, and humanity-related unpredictability are crucial to achieving learner immersion. This aligns with the call from healthcare education to increase the authenticity of these virtual patients to achieve higher effectiveness when using this type of educational tool for NTS.

    In my recent PhD study, I collected and analysed dissemination data from game narrative designers, culminating in a design heuristics framework to draft virtual patients for NTS. It consists of a step-by-step buildup starting from a subject-matter expert story to achieve a high-level design. In addition, a writer’s toolkit suggests models and guiding questions from the game narrative design to enhance the detailed writing of choices and dialogue.

    In this workshop, I invited participants to experience the step-by-step writing exercise based on a number of given stories and to experiment with the toolkit to grasp what is needed to create a high-quality virtual patient. Simultaneously, I invite suggested enhancements to the framework through collective use in the workshop.

    Workshop D:

    Conflicted Courses: a matrix game for collaborative design (180 min in total)

    Richard Durham, Ruth Lemon

    Part1 (120 min) at Drawing Room (14:00-16:00)
    Part2 (60 min) at Drawing Room (16:30-17:30)

    Abstract

    In this 180-minute workshop, play “Conflicted Courses: A Collaborative Matrix Game,” and work through a participatory design process to adapt it and add scenarios. Conflicted Coures was designed to deepen participants’ understanding of collaborative decision-making dynamics.

    Structured into three segments, this workshop will guide participants through a gameplay:

    1. Introduction to the problem addressed:
      1. Participants will be briefed on why this game was created, and its aims in making explicit the goals collaborators have when designing something.
    2. Play an introductory 2-hour version of Conflicted Courses:
      1. Briefing on the scenario and course setting.
      2. Assignment and review of team roles.
      3. Explanation of rounds, tasks, and course map.
      4. Engagement in rounds 1-5, involving planning and development tasks.
      5. Debrief session with guided discussion.
    3. Discussion and participatory design session:
      1. Reflective discussion on gameplay experiences.
      2. Participatory design session focusing on scenario development, rule modifications, and potential applications of the Conflicted Courses approach.

     This structured approach ensures participants gain practical experience in collaborative decision-making, negotiation skills, and understanding of matrix game simulations. Whether participants are educators, policymakers, or professionals from diverse backgrounds, they will find value in this workshop’s hands-on experience and knowledge exchange.

    By the conclusion of the session, participants will not only have gained practical experience in using matrix games for collaborative decision-making but will also have contributed to the ongoing development of the Conflicted Courses game.

    Tuesday 9th of July:

    Workshop E:

    Cooperation across group boundaries in a multilayered social structure (90 min)

    Yoko Kitakaji

    Drawing Room (10:30-12:00)

    Abstract

    Cooperation across group boundaries is necessary in a social structure, which includes multiple small groups in a large group. People face issues that transcend group boundaries (e.g., climate change), thereby requiring across-group cooperation. However, within-group cooperation, discriminating against outgroups or favoring the ingroup through competition with outgroups, may inhibit across-group cooperation. The workshop will conduct a game to explore ways for achieving cooperation across group boundaries without causing ingroup favoritism. The game will take 90 minutes to complete.

    Focusing on the utilization of coastal zones, this game illustrates the interactions between local and global groups, with individuals belonging to two local groups: fishermen and the marine leisure industry. Fishermen form fishing associations and cooperate within their groups to manage coastal areas. The marine leisure industry has been established in recent years owing to the spread of leisure activities in coastal areas. However, recreational travelers using coastal areas have degraded the coastal environment and ecosystem. Although the two local groups cooperate within their respective groups, maintaining across-group cooperation for marine environmental conservation remains challenging.

    The participants are either fishermen or belong to the marine leisure industry and aim to maximize their individual interests. Each group comprises six to seven participants. Individuals can choose to contribute to their local groups, the global group, or not contribute. Participants may experience dynamics where local group boundaries lead to suspicion and distrust of out-groups, inhibit or achieve cooperation across local group boundaries, and learn approaches to resolving intergroup conflicts.

    Workshop F:

    Revolutionizing Simulation Games? Playful Brainstorming on Enhancing Analogue Games with Immersive Technologies (120 min)

    Birgit Zürn, Maria Freese, Heide Lukosch

    Drawing Room (13:00-15:00)

    Abstract

    The importance of immersive technologies such as Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality or Artificial Intelligence will continue to increase in the coming years and influence practically all areas of life and learning content. However, VR/AR- or AI-based applications have not yet arrived in many (simulation) games, or there have only been initial attempts to integrate them into existing games. The workshop therefore aims to bridge the gap between analogue (simulation) games and cutting-edge technologies, such as VR/AR and AI. For this purpose, we want to dive into the gameplay of a maximum of two analogue (simulation) games and interactively explore ideas on the extent to which VR/AR- or AI-based elements can be added to these games.

    Workshop G:

    Some Sordid Stories from the History of Playing Cards – and how and why we still use them (90 min)

    Elyssebeth Ellen Leigh, Elizabeth Tipton

    Workshop Room (15:30-17:00)

    Abstract

    Playing cards have an astonishing and varied history – as briefly explored in our 2023 paper. This workshop is an opportunity for participants to make connections among their experiences of ‘playing cards’ (and playing ‘cards’) and the history of their development and use.

    The workshop begins with some storytelling to bring participants up to date with information about what is currently believed about where and how cards emerged from obscurity to become some of the best-known playthings around the world. In a comparatively short time, cards conquered most social contexts while being regarded as the ‘devil’s playthings’ for the common laborers while being ‘a pleasant pastime’ for the priests and nobility at the same time.

    For simulationists and gamers and teachers, cards have been an ubiquitous tool for use in play and learning for nearly a millennium. So what is the magic potion that makes them so useful? How have they been used in the past? How are we using them now? Is there no end to their diversity and convenience? How do they represent social mores and habits?

    How can they help us track social conditions, beliefs and habits? How can a better understanding of their core characteristics help us to use them as research design and learning tools?

    Participants are invited to bring and share card packs common to their own national or professional context. The diversity of forms, uses and designs is surprising, and the workshop will contribute to participants’ knowledge in similarly surprising ways.

    Wednesday 10th of July:

    Workshop H:

    Simulation Gaming Meets Immersive Virtual Reality (120 min)

    Ulrike Mascher, David Fernes, Alexander Tillmann

    Drawing Room (10:30-12:30)

    Abstract

    In our workshop (90-120 minutes), we want to look at simulation gaming in relation to immersive virtual reality. Through role playing and role identification, realistic scenarios, and authentic problems, simulation games offer the opportunity to take on different perspectives within a simulated environment and to carry out safe trial actions (cf. Meßner et al. 2018; Hertel & Millis 2023), for which they are increasingly used in higher education (cf. Chernikova et al. 2020). Similarly, the medium of virtual reality (VR) also offers learners the opportunity to test their own assumptions and options for action in a realistic setting without having to fear negative consequences (e.g. Mulders et al. 2020). Our hypothesis is that the simulation game method, which relies, among other things, on immersion effects through role-taking and the game atmosphere, can be enhanced by immersive VR-supported learning settings.

    To test this hypothesis, a VR-supported simulation game prototype was developed that we would like to test with the international simulation game experts at ISAGA 2024. Together, we want to explore the potentials for VR-supported simulation games. In a VR-session, workshop participants will have the opportunity to test our prototype and share an immersive experience. We also would like to invite the participants to a joint discussion of questions like “What are the benefits and/or challenges that arise from the combination of an immersive method and an immersive medium? Is VR suitable to facilitate educational simulation games? Or vice versa: Is the method a good use case for the technology?”.

    Workshop I:

    Does the SOLUTRE serious game, dealing with territorial planning and governance in an emblematic region of France, work in other geographical and cultural contexts? (120 min)

    Nicolas Becu, Damien Marage, Anne Jegou, David Simiand, Benedicte Reyssat, Brice Anselme

    Workshop Room (10:30-12:30)

    Abstract

    The SOLUTRE serious game has been developed in a French context and explores the ways in which a rural area can develop by reconciling local quality of life, tourism development and good ecological status. It features 5 roles representing 5 actors from the Roches de Solutré-Pouilly-Vergisson area (an emblematic site in Southern Burgundy), who must interact and negotiate to obtain a territorial label, the “Label Grand Site de France”, which rewards the success of their territorial development project. This game is used in higher education in France, in geography and land planning departments, to teach territorial planning and governance and to get students thinking about the different paths to sustainable development.

    But can this game be used outside the French context? What parallels can be drawn between the Solutré-Pouilly-Vergisson application context, which combines wine production, rural tourism and protection of a sensitive natural site, and other geographical and cultural contexts? To this end, we have developed an English version of the game, and we are proposing to run games at the conference to test the playability and interest of the game and its teaching objectives, by confronting it with another language, other cultures and other acceptances of the concept of sustainable development and territorial governance.

    The SOLUTRE serious game is a collaborative, asymmetrical game with secret objectives. During the 5 rounds of the game, the 5 teams of players (5 roles) must carry out individual actions by placing hexagons on the game board, which represent development actions (for example, producing wine, organizing eco-activities, building a hotel, a health centre, restoring dry stone walls…).  Players must also negotiate to develop “major projects” that require collective agreement and resources. The various actions they undertake lead to changes in 3 gauges: “Environment”, “Attractiveness” and “Quality of life”. Through their actions, the players seek to achieve their individual secret objective (for example, to build as many homes as possible, to promote eco-tourism, to establish a nature reserve…), but also to achieve the collective objective of obtaining the “Grand Site de France” label by reaching the maximum values of the three gauges.

    The workshop will take place in 3 parts: playing several parallel games, a joint debriefing of the game, followed by a discussion of possible parallels with other geographical and cultural contexts in terms of game content and teaching objectives.

    Thursday 11th of July:

    Workshop A-2:

    Facilitator of the Future - Influence of Immersive Technologies on the Facilitation of Simulation Games – Part 2 (90 min)

    Maria Freese, Birgit Zuern, Heide Lukosch

    Drawing Room (10:30-12:00)

    Abstract

    In times of digital transformation, immersive technologies and artificial intelligence are playing an increasingly important role. Through the use of immersive technologies, a more intensive and realistic world of experience can be created in simulation games. More and more simulation games are integrating virtual reality, augmented reality or other forms of immersive technologies to make in-game experiences more lively and more interactive. To what extent the use of immersive technologies, but also artificial intelligence influences the facilitation of simulation games is still unclear. In recent months, we have already distributed an online questionnaire asking international experts from the Simulation & Gaming field about relevant skills and competencies in relation to the facilitation of simulation games in the light of immersive technologies and artificial intelligence. In this workshop, we would like to work through the results interactively in a setting based on a group Delphi method. The advantage of this method is that it makes a knowledge-based and constructive discussion with an interdisciplinary group of experts possible. Alternating in the form of at least two rounds, results are worked out in groups and discussed in plenary.

    Friday 12th of July:

    Workshop J:

    Incorporating games into the tertiary curricula: HOHI 1816, a case study (120 min)

    Ruth Lemon, Richard Durham

    Drawing Room (10:30-12:30)

    Abstract

    In 2017, Ruth Lemon developed a board-game, ‘HOHI 1816’, which has now been used with Graduate Diploma, Bachelor of Education and Bachelor of Arts students. Students were finding it difficult to consolidate their understandings of the critical histories around pre-Treaty Māori and Pākehā engagement, as demonstrated in summative assessment tasks. The game was developed to address this pedagogical need and to support students’ critical engagement with stories concerning the establishment of the first school next to Rangihoua pā, in the Bay of Islands. The aim was for students to experience the events and the dynamics of the relationships between Māori and Pākehā at the time. The game was redeveloped in 2018 in collaboration with Richard Durham, who supported the re-alignment of the game mechanics with key learning objectives.

    This workshop is targeted at educators interested in incorporating games into curricula, interested in using the design process with students, and in novel and accessible ways to engage students in Māori history. Participants will get time to play a portion of the game, followed by discussion about the design choices and considerations participants should have when designing games that explore stories. Participants will leave with guidelines on creating educationally oriented games from our “lessons learned.” This workshop will provide an example of developing a game where learning objectives and gameplay are aligned, a vital pre-requisite skill in the development of learning games.

    Poster Presentations:

    Posters demonstrate the early stages of research and development in line with the conference topic. Posters will be presented at dedicated times and locations throughout the week, to allow a lively discussion of early stage work. Please see the program for more details. More information is coming soon.

    Game Exhibition and HIT Lab NZ Open Day:

    The Thursday (11th July) afternoon will be dedicated to demonstrating local game developments. Conference participants will be able to connect to local game developers. We will also open the doors to HIT Lab NZ, where research projects and immersive (game) technologies can be experienced.

    Social Program:

    Connection is key!

    We will celebrate (re)connecting at a central Christchurch location on Tuesday night, to welcome all participants in a festive environment.

    Wednesday afternoon (10th July) is dedicated to experiencing the community and the location – we will have three different social events for different interests, in Nature, History, and Culture in and around Ōtautahi Christchurch.

    On Thursday night (11th July), we will come together in the hills over Christchurch to celebrate the successes of our community, to look back to the (most of the) conference week, and into the future of upcoming conferences.

    We will close the conference with a wrap-up action, and the traditional tree-planting ceremony close to the conference venue.