Design and Evaluation of a Mobile Application for an Educational Card Game
Keywords:Hybrid Games, Educational Games, Board Games, Teaching Software Testing, UX Evaluation
Educational games can provide players with rich learning and socializing experiences through different interac-tion paradigms, such as board games, card games, and, more recently, hybrid (physical-digital) games. However, the process of making, maintaining, and evolving an educational analog game is not a trivial task. Balancing the game mechanics and dynamics to provide a pleasant and educational gaming experience can be very difficult to achieve. Furthermore, adding a digital component in the gameplay can disturb the experience of the game and learning ob-jectives, and this kind of insertion should be evaluated. This work then aims to report the process of developing and evaluating a mobile application for helping the gameplay of a card game that focuses on on teaching software testing concepts. Our primary concern during the development of the application was whether its insertion would compromise the learning process or the social experience of the card game. The developed application has the fol-lowing functionalities: point counter, dice scrolling, timer, and a summary of the rules. We designed and developed a first version of the application. Then, we evaluated the impact of its insertion on gameplay by applying the game assisted with the application with students from Computer Science and Computer Engineering courses and, after the end of the game, the participants answered questionnaires about the players’ experience and their impressions about the application. Based on the results, we perceived that the use of the application provided benefits to the players’ experience, although the evaluation highlighted some opportunities for improvement. Thus, we evolve the mobile application based on the comments gathered in this evaluation. This new version has improvements on user’s interface, aiming to provide a better user experience, and new functionalities. Furthermore, we assessed the second version and compared both versions of the mobile app in order to collect evidence regarding improvements in the game experience.
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