Projects 2010 > Biofeedback in Gaming > Journal
Recently I have been spending time thinking about how we are going to design a study that gathers the research we need in order to effectively design a small game demo, or a collection of different mini-games.
The aim of the study is to understand how people’s heart rates respond when performing specific active game activities (wii boxing, running, etc) for specific periods of time. This information could then be useful in designing an appropriate difficulty curve of an active game where heart rate is monitored.
In my last post I stated three research questions, the last of which was based around using ‘game based instruction’ as a means of packaging the monitored activities to the participant, so recently I have been playing with a number of games such as Wii Sports Resort, Family Trainer and Wii Fit. This has also given me an appreciation of the different ways the Wiimote (accelerometer based) gesture recognition technology can be used. However this experimentation has caused me to question whether any of these off-shelf products can really provide the type of game based instruction I need. When I remove the game based instruction the current study design looks like this:
- 3×3 within subjects design (Same subjects will complete 3 conditions with 3 levels)
- Dependant Variable: Heart rate
- Independent Variables: Exercise type, duration
My current feeling is that while I wish to carry out this research and wide scale testing, logistically it is going to be quite an effort and therefore the study design needs to be right. If I organise a study with 50 participants but the research questions are not quite right then I would have just wasted a lot of time collecting useless data. Therefore I think what I need to do now is turn my head to more technological concerns. By getting a heart rate monitor and possibly Wii controls integrated into the game engine we can do some small scale testing on ourselves first alongside getting a simple tech demo going. This will give us a better feel for what we can do and more time to research existing data/papers. We can then iterate later on. Discussing this approach with some of the Media Sandbox advisers has made me more convinced that this is the best direction at this stage.
So for now the primary research study has been drawn up, but put on hold until we can do more effective testing with the technology we will be using. My next step is to look into the tech further.