Developing games is hard. Developing a game to change players in a specific way that transfers and persists beyond the play session is really hard. The Transformational Framework is designed to help you navigate this challenging development space by detailing a practical pre-production process built around a set of exploratory questions covering eight critical topics for Transformational games:
- High-Level Purpose: The big-picture goal that is motivating your game’s development
- Audience & Context: A deep look at the usage ecosystem for the game, beyond traditional target player demographics
- Player Transformations: The most important ways you want your players to be different after playing your game
- Barriers: An understanding of those things that stand in the way of your purpose and how you want to change your players
- Expert Resources: The people, books, etc., that you consider authoritative sources of insight and feedback on your domain
- Domain Map: The critical content that your game experience needs to embody
- Prior Work: The case studies and research that you are using as references for your transformational design strategy
- Assessment Plan: How you and others will decide if your game is effective
The Transformational Framework includes detailed process advice, strategies for working with external stakeholders and experts, as well as tips, warnings, and stories from developers to give additional insight for anyone working on Transformational games. While primarily intended for game developers looking for guidance in this space, it is designed to be accessible by anyone interested in Transformational Games.
The Transformational Framework is based on the work of Schell Games, an independent game studio that specializes in bridging entertainment and education to create games that are both engaging and enriching.