Development of the Learning Game Tile War

Mathias Elbæk Gregersen, Peter Gissel Christensen, Natascha Denise Grønlie, Mette Tanggaard Olhsen, Lasse Juel Larsen

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


    This paper investigates the development of a learning game with focus on motivation and engagement. During the investigation a competitive learning game with the purpose of training addition through repetition, was developed. The game, Tile War, relies upon motivated play and continued engagement. Existing math games with focus on arithmetics are primarily designed from a structure where the player is progressing the games by solving equations. Typically, the narrative of the games does not include a direct connection to the equations being solved, creating dissonance between the two. State of the art competitive math games are often limited to beating other players’ high scores providing little to no social interaction during play. This paper includes the development of a serious game that aims at integrating basic addition operations in a game structure, in such a way as to integrate the game mechanics tightly with the frame of the game, all to create a coherent player experience. The multiplayer competitive game structure is designed to include a social aspect thought to engage and motivate players. The working hypothesis is that such a design will present the player with a game that will increase player engagement and motivation, resulting in expanded playtime and increased skill of performing the basic arithmetic skill of addition. The development project used an agile and iterative design process where ideas and prototypes were developed and improved through player tests with 85 pupils in 5th, 6th and 7th grade, on three different private schools. The findings show the game was indeed motivating and engaging, however further development should consider adding dynamic difficulty adjustment (DDA) to support and expand a single and multiplayer modes together with a matchmaking system to make the multiplayer mode reach full maturity.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the 13th European Conference on Games Based Learning, ECGBL 2019
    EditorsLars Elbaek, Gunver Majgaard, Andrea Valente, Saifuddin Khalid
    PublisherAcademic Conferences and Publishing International
    Publication dateOct 2019
    ISBN (Electronic)9781912764389
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2019
    Event13th European Conference on Games Based Learning - University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark
    Duration: 3. Oct 20194. Oct 2019


    Conference13th European Conference on Games Based Learning
    LocationUniversity of Southern Denmark


    • Competitive Game
    • Learning
    • Motivation
    • Arithmetic skill training
    • school children
    • Competitive game
    • School children


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