Asynchronous Multimedia Sharing Integrated into Games

Draw Something’s success as a user-created content game is probably only the beginning of a trend in user-generated content-driven games. I touched on the reasons for this in Chapter 6 (short version: it’s crazy viral), and you are likely to see more games in that genre appearing on the broader web. Among these could be Creatarr (www.creatarr.com), a game developed a couple of years before Draw Something launched, which now seems poised to push out into this cresting wave. Like Draw Something, Creatarr shares the virtue of being based on asynchronous multimedia sharing, which makes it a natural fit for how most people use the Internet on a daily basis.

Lead designer Jim Purbrick says, “[T]here’s a big opportunity for games to work around web ideas of social objects like images, music, and video, which is something that Creatarr is doing—building small nuggets of gameplay that produce social objects on the web that can be shared and commented on, but that also become input to someone else’s game later. It avoids the problems of lobbies, appointments, events, critical mass, dropped connections, and differing participation levels that you get with synchronous gaming and provides the social elements required to build community. All this without having to force downtime into a game design just to stop people playing for a moment so they can hang out.”

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