Players’ Experience in a Sport Geocaching Game

Players’ Experience in a Sport Geocaching Game

Pirita Ihamäki (University of Turku, Finland) and Mika Luimula (University of Turku, Finland)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-4623-0.ch006
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Abstract

Geocaching is a multiplayer outdoor sports game. There is a lack of extensive research on this game, and there is a need for more academic research on this game and its application to other contexts worldwide. There are about 5 million people participating in the geocaching game in 220 different countries worldwide. The geocaching game is interesting because the players create it. The players’ role in game design increases its value in human-centred design research. Digital games are a prevalent form of entertainment in which the purpose of the design is to engage the players. This case study was carried out with 52 Finnish geocachers as an Internet survey. The purpose of this conceptual analysis is to investigate how the geocaching sports game might inform game design by looking at player experiences, devices, and techniques that support problem solving within complex environments. Specifically, this analysis presents a brief overview of the geocaching sports game, its role in popular adventure game design, and an analysis of the underlying players’ experiences and enjoyment as a structure to be used in game design.
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This section describes some of the earlier work that has been done on the geocaching sports game. The related literature presented in this chapter contains the studies where geocaching is the main focus of the research. The study of geocaching has only recently begun, and the game has extended to many social media forms and contexts, adding to the meaningfulness of this geocaching study. Our study presents of brief overview of the geocaching sport game, its role in popular adventure game design and an analysis of the underlying players’ experiences and enjoyment as a structure to be used in pervasive game design.

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