Blog Archive

Saturday, May 09, 2009

FDG 2009 Day 2, Yasmin Kafai on game design “for girls”

Invited Talk: Yasmin Kafai, Ph.D., Professor of Learning Sciences, University of Pennsylvania Graduate School at Education
Beyond Barbie and Mortal Kombat: New Perspectives on Girls and Games

Yasmin Kafai, IMG_8869

Yasmin Kafai gave an interesting speech on the history of designing games for girls, providing us with three named categories for these design endeavors:
- Games for girls only
- Games for social change
- Games for expression

3 categories of game design for girls IMG_8879

Kafai conducts her research in a teen virtual worlds where the percentage of female players are higher than that of males (Yes, they exist). She gave a fascinating overview of her work where she had analyzed logs of play from 6 months, and could see patterns in behaviors and very diverse playing styles. I don’t think anyone would believe that all girls play the same way just because they are girls, but if there is anyone out there assuming this Kafai’s work has solid proof of the contrary.