I have played the game Phantasy Quest three times to experience the learning process by playing a game. First of all, it is an easy game to start with. The visual design is good, without a bunch of items displayed there to annoy you. The instruction is clear and explicit, with both arrows and dialogue box reminding you. And most importantly, there is time limit! Personally I hate those games with time limits, which will make me too nervous to win the game.
When I was playing the game, I was thinking that if my future students play this game in my language class, what would my students learn from this game? The most basic one is the vocabulary, I think. Each time you click on the item, there is will be a dialogue box telling what it is. You may click on the item several times to try to find out your target in playing the game. That kind of repetition can help students remember the vocabulary in the game. In addition, the game is a kind of exploring game. Students read the instruction and explore all the scenes in the game. They can learn how to complete the task step by step, which means they will become patient in language learning. What’s more, even if they cannot figure out the route to the destination, they can refer to the walkthrough, where they can know how to successfully win the game, without feeling frustrated at all. Let’s see how the game is helpful to students intrinsically. This game includes almost all the elements mentioned by Tom Chatfield in his TED video 7 Ways Games Reward the Brain. It has uncertainty because you are stranded on a deserted island. It gives you immediate feedback and reward once you click on something. You are engaged in the game because you are always encouraged to find the target and complete the game. Besides, the clear and interesting instruction really helps when students are exposed to the game individually.
With the help of game, the language learning process becomes more interesting. Teacher acts as an instructor to give students hints if they need, or enhance their learning after they play the game. Students would explore the game by themselves first, and then get some feedback or instruction from the teacher. As a future teacher, I would use walkthrough for the game. But I would only use it when they are at loss. I will encourage them to explore by themselves first, and then provide them walkthrough. To assess their learning, I would refer to KyleMawer's task types for assessing content learned in games. I would ask them to note down their difficulty and success in the game to assess their personal experiences. I would pay attention to their emotional change toward the game, for example, whether they are encouraged by the game to learn more, or they are just frustrated. I can imagine, gamification in language class would be very interesting!