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RPGWatch Forums » Games » The Elder Scrolls » The Elder Scrolls I - IV » Oblivion Mod: a thesis project testing gameplay preferences

Default Oblivion Mod: a thesis project testing gameplay preferences

December 13th, 2008, 21:53
Oblivion Mod, for gameplay preferences thesis project: Mirei of Estrel

I am a professional game designer with over three years experience working in the industry, and I am currently pursuing my Master's of Interactive Technology with the Guildhall at SMU, from where I graduated with a certificate in 2005. I completed this level/ mod project using the Oblivion editor to test gameplay preferences in an actual gameplay setting. Below you'll find a feature list, a general description of the mod and its objectives, download info, key facts, and screenshot links. The level is accompanied by a survey taken after you have completed the level to record what choices you made while playing and what you enjoyed about the experience.

If any of you are willing to play my thesis level and then take the survey, I would greatly appreciate it. And I do really think you'll enjoy playing the mod. The level lasts 30 minutes to 1 hour or so, depending on your play speed, and the survey takes 10 - 15 minutes. The installer is downloadable here: www.jennifern.net/mirei and the survey for after youíve played it is here: www.jennifern.net/survey.html

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Mirei of Estrel features:

- 45 - 75 minutes of gameplay
- almost 400 lines of dialogue
- branching dialogue trees that affect gameplay
- heavy focus on player choice
- heavy focus on alternate paths and alternate solutions
- some non-linear quests
- mod created by a professional game designer
- completion survey (takes 10 - 15 minutes, after you play the mod) so that you can share what you want in a game experience
- survey results and conclusions will be shared with professional and aspiring developers, and the general public

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Here is a short description of the mod and its objectives:

Mirei of Estrel is a standalone experience, completely set apart from the main world of Oblivion. Mirei is a 35 year old herbalist, outcast from the nearby village of Estrel. She is forced to confront her troubled past when several village girls go missing and she sets out to discover what happened. There are multiple paths to resolve the mystery of the missing girls and many opportunities to explore Mirei's past and her relationship to the villagers. I have concentrated heavily on branching dialogue, non-linear quests, and player choice to create an opportunity for varied play experiences.

This modís purpose is to create an enjoyable gameplay experience that also tests gameplay preferences as they diverge across demographic lines. It is accompanied by a survey taken on completion to document the playerís choices in the level and what they did and didnít enjoy about the experience. I have demographics and general gaming questions at the start of the survey which are meant to break up the players into smaller categories, i.e. favorite genre, hardcore vs. casual, age range, gender, consoles owned, etc. The idea is to see how preferences trend when looked at against the demographics and what-kind-of-gamer-are-you questions.

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Key Facts

- You must have Oblivion to play this mod.
- You do not need Shivering Isles or Knights of the Nine to play this mod.
- This mod comes with a save file. You start the experience by loading the save file.
- This mod comes with both an installer and a zip file for those who prefer a manual install.
- Do not play this mod with your normal characters and donít leave it running in the background once you are finished playing it.
- Also, please read the ReadMe before you play! There is some important information in there.

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Screenshots

Mirei of Estrel #1
Mirei of Estrel #2
Mirei of Estrel #3
Mirei of Estrel #4
Mirei of Estrel #5
Mirei of Estrel #6
Mirei of Estrel #7
Mirei of Estrel #8
Mirei of Estrel #9
Mirei of Estrel #10
Mirabelle is offline

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December 14th, 2008, 04:12
Sounds interesting. I don't have the time myself, but I wish you luck and hope you'll find a few people here willing to play.

If God said it, then that settles it!!

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December 14th, 2008, 10:46
Yes that's interesting, too bad it's only for English natives. That said the Olivion choice make easy to predict the result. Seriously who still have Oblivion installed, a precise category of players. The experience is probably to confront the survey results and the mod analysis results but that will be on a delimited category of the players population.
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December 14th, 2008, 11:55
It seems quite impressive.
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December 16th, 2008, 02:50
Hey everyone,

Glad to see the good early impressions! Has anyone played the mod, yet? What did you think?
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