My name is Namcy, and for my entire life I’ve been considered legally blind. This is due to a degenerative disease of the Retina. When I was younger I had more vision, and I actually use to play video games, but as my vision got worse I slowly stopped playing video games. Recently, I began playing Mine Sweeper.
The essence of play was present, such as the challenge and reward. There were several things that were challenging for me. First, figuring out what the game was about. Second, not have a mine blow up, because it seems that I was really good at finding a mine. Third and most importantly, enjoying the game without relying on any visual cues. I felt that was the most challenging part, but once I played Mine Sweeper, and found that the game had some auditory cues, then the reward aspect came to light. First, I began to enjoy a mine blowing up, so my phone would vibrate. Having that indicator as the end of one game, and the beginning of another became something I looked forward to. Second, having my son guide my finger on the screen, and he telling me the squares and numbers being unlocked felt so rewarding, because I felt that I was making progress. Third, it’s not a reward directly related to the game, but it arose due to the game; I feel a renewed curiosity about playing and the systems of rewards and challenges, and how I can learn to adapt games for me.
I didn’t feel that there was a particular path to follow in this game. It is somewhat unclear to me what was the main objective of Mine Sweeper. The only goal I had was prolonging the times between blowing up, but I’m unsure if that is the goal of the game. This uncertainty about the game is what frustrated me.
I really didn’t do a formal visual analysis of the game, because I became so involved with playing the game. I forgot to ask about any visual effects. I would ask about the squares and numbers appearing on the screen, and what part of the grid was unlocked. Additionally, I wanted to know what I would possibly be doing next. Overall, this isn’t a fast pace game, but when someone is describing what’s on the screen, then the game takes an entirely different dimension.
Lastly, Fun!!! I did enjoy certain aspects of play, such as the challenge. Despite the” win” being so elusive; I enjoyed trying to discover what Mine Sweeper was all about. Also, I liked that the game was set up like a grid, so it made it easier to identify were on the screen I was supposed to touch next. Far above and beyond, it wasn’t the game I enjoyed so much, but the actual experience of “play.” I had forgotten how much fun playing a game is, and how “play” is very relevant in processing information, such as what is on the screen.