Street fighter IV – XBOX 360
The first game I played was Street Fighter IV on the XBOX 360. It is a 2-player fighting game, where players battle each other to deplete their opponent’s health and therefore win the match. Due to the fact that the game is entirely based on competition and battle, it is firmly in the Agon category of play. However, it is likely that players will feel that they are the character that they are playing, so it could also be included in the mimicry category. Matches do not last very long, the longest match that was played only lasted 99 seconds, and although the game is 3D, the players both view the match on a 2D plane. I do not believe that this contributes to the player feeling a sense of flow, as the player is constantly being thrust in and out of the action when the match ends.
Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 – XBOX 360
We played several Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch games on the multiplayer maps on this game. The multiplayer element of the game fits into both the Agon and Mimicry categories of play. The player is helped in mimicking their character by the fact that the player chooses a character that has no background or face, allowing the player to imprint their own self onto the character. I felt that whilst it was possible to slip into a state of flow whilst playing this game, we were chatting whilst doing so, which kept the game enjoyable, but did not allow me to slip into a state of flow very easily.
Mario Kart 64 – Nintendo 64
Mario Kart 64 is a racing game with characters from the Mario series of games, on the Nintendo 64. The game is placed in the Agon and Mimicry categories, as the player chooses which character to play as at the beginning, and the aim of the game is to beat the other players and win the race using your driving skills and the powers you can collect around the map. The game is designed as a party game for multiple people to play, which increases the game’s fun value, but can disturb the state of flow for the individual as they the noises of celebration or frustration that the other players make can interrupt the state of flow. However, I think that it is possible to enter a state of flow as a playing group, as you are all focused on trying to defeat the others.
Goldeneye – Nintendo 64
This is a first person shooter game based on the James Bond film. The game is categorised under the Agon and Mimicry categories of play, as the players take on the role of a character from the film, and attempt to defeat the other players. As a group, we found that the game was almost impossible to enter a state of flow in, as the awkward and clunky control and aiming systems kept getting in the way of us being able to enter a state of flow as we were constantly reminded of the fact that we were controlling the player.
Fifa 64 – Nintendo 64
Fifa 64 is a football game on the Nintendo 64. The game comes under the Agon category, and in a lesser sense could come under the Mimicry category, except that the player is playing as the whole team rather than just a single player. We struggled to enter a state of flow during the playing of the game, as the buttons were confusing, and the camera kept changing its position and angles at irregular intervals, which made controlling the players confusing and difficult, which caused us to become frustrated, and unable to enter state of flow.