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    CyberLab-project

    This project is funded by the Kymenlaakso council from the European Union regional development fund for the duration of 2015-2017. LUT is a consortium partner in this project with Kymenlaakso University of Applied Sciences and Cursor Oy.

    Executive Summary

    Lappeenranta University of Technology (LUT) has been approved a new research project on the usability testing, monetization and user interface design. This new project is called ”Kyberturvallisuus-osaaminen ja liiketoiminnan kehittäminen” (Cybersecurity knowledge and business development), Cyberlab for short, combines the existing knowledge regarding usability testing, explorative testing and quality assurance into a study concerning long-distance learning and gamified teaching applications.

    The first proof-of-concept-prototype for gamified teaching applications will be developed for cyber security domain in cooperation with Kymenlaakso University of Applied Sciences (KyAMK) cyberlab research group. In this project, the aim is to develop the general guidelines for successful gamification strategy for the serious and even technically challenging topics such as cybersecurity. In addition, the other long-term objective fot the project is to study the monetization models in the game-like and gamified applications, enabling the game and software industry to design more customer-oriented serious gaming applications for the mobile platforms. For these purposes, the project aims collect and analyze data on how the different monetization and gamification approaches work and publish the results as a openly available guidebook.

    For more information, please contact
    Jussi Kasurinen (jussi.kasurinen@lut.fi) or
    professor Kari Smolander (kari.smolander@lut.fi).

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Game Cloud project

The Game Cloud project was looking for game developers to join! Thank you for your interest!

We are now launching Game Cloud beta and inviting game developers to join in. Experienced developers as well as student developers are welcome to join in. Read more...

Model for Game Cloud

Executive summary

The Game Cloud project aims to solve the marketplace visibility problem in a new, novel way. The research focuses on interconnected games that operate in a way where the games promote each other. In short, the main idea is to have games contain references to each other inside the game worlds.

Reasoning behind the research

The massive number of games available in marketplaces has brought a challenge for game developers. Marketplaces are congested and thus realistically only a small percentage of games released reach decent sales. Apple’s App Store alone receives 150 to 200 game submissions daily, yet 80% of these games are expected to gross less than 300 USD in their whole lifetime. The reason for this is mainly related to discoverability in the marketplace and audience awareness of the game.

What are interoperable or connected games?

During the recent years, games that contain very clear references to other games have been released. The references in these games are built as actual game elements rather than static advertisements. For example, the events in one game can influence players in another and game characters can travel from one game to another game.
An example of game crossover is visible Eve Online and Dust 514. The games are connected to the same game universe where Eve Online player alliances can compete for the resources of these planets and fund the fighting squads of first-person shooter Dust 514 to capture these planets for them. Even though the games are completely different in their play style, the actions of players in one game can influence the other one. Another example of cross-game promotion is to borrow assets from another game. Triple.bit.runner for one contains game characters from Super Meat Boy (and vice versa). Players then perceive these kinds of in-game references as interesting because they are entwined to the game world.

What is Game Cloud doing?

Game Cloud is an research project lead by Lappeenranta University of Technology. The research revolves around proving, that the aforementioned intercontextual cross-game interaction and game world connection brings value to both game developers and players. This in return would create a new way for game developers to gain visibility in game markets by creating networks of games that promote each other.
The supporting idea behind cross-game cooperation, is that a players are given information during the game that they could receive additional benefits to the game by playing another game. For example a player of a car game notices that upgrading a speciality upgrade is only available by playing another game. In this other game user has to earn certain achievement, like win Niki Lauda to earn special tires, which can then be equipped in the other game. This kind of interconnections encourage players to look for other games as they will get benefits which are useful for their game play. Games can implement a network of interconnections to provide visibility for each other.
To accomplish the cooperation between games from different developers we are building a communication platform that helps game developers share data from their games. The platform sets a common standard for game data in a game event based form and data can be shared to another developer through the same interface. The service simplifies the storage and transfer of game data so that game developers only have to implement the references to another game(s) inside their own game world. The service also provides the developers with additional usage statistics.

Kaakon peliklusteri and Game Cluster projects by EU regional development fund (EAKR)

SOCES - Software Development in Creative Ecosystems - is a research project at Software Engineering laboratory at Lappeenranta University of Technology funded by the city of Lappeenranta, Cursor Oy and province authoroties along with the European Union development. Reseach is funded by two projects, projects number A31814, “Kaakon Peliklusteri” administered by the Council of Southern Karelia and number A32139 “Game Cluster” administered by the Council of Päijät-Häme.

SOCES research has three main objectives: 1) Help starting businesses in game industry to understand what approach to take in game development, 2) Help existing business to develop their software process towards better practices quality-wise and understand their strengths and weaknesses and finally 3) Develop a method for modeling the actual game development process and assess the strengths and risks related to it.

The project will be running from Q3/2011 to Q2/2014.

Quick runthrough

SOCES - Software Development in Creative Ecosystems - will will conduct a qualitative study on game industry. The focus will be on assessing game industry practices, and helping new and small software organizations to emerge. The research objectives and focus areas of this study are on software processes of game industry, new and small enterprises of game industry, features of massively creative software processes, and in assessment of a group of international software development standards in application of developing businesses towards better practices. In the following picture some of the most important themes of interest are listed to provide some idea on research concepts:

SOCES themes of interest

To provide small and startup-businesses with support on development a new software engineering standard ISO/IEC 29910 has been developed. The objective of this standard is to provide basic model for software development to any organization which decides to develop software professionally. In this study, one of the main themes is to evaluate this model against the current practices of starting game industry, and if possible, provide details on how to apply the model in practice.

Model for very small entity software process

Approach

The approach on SOCES project is to observe existing organizations and based on their activities, design a model for a starting game industry company to fit the needs and requirements of functional organization. Our study will include approximately 10 different organizations from different domains of game industry. The idea is to collect and analyze the orgnization based on four different rounds of interviews, in which we will interview game designers, project managers, testers, programmers and game artists based on their activities in the development process.

Information

The results of our studies are published in scientific forums of software engineering and game industry. The complete list of publications, and additional material for the project, can be found at our Library subpages.