Artwork#4 Self-Intro

Game Description:

This is a text-based narrating game, there are 2 players, player 1 first answer a series of questions, and his/her answer will be the only   choices for player 2, who must fill in the blanks from sentences popping up on the screen, the “story” is about a person who is introducing himself.





Artist Statement:

So the idea of this is that I want 2 players have 2 opposite feelings of the game, player 1, who is just answering the questions, will have free choices of answering all the questions, however for player 2, his only choices are provided by player 1, who just filled in those questions arbitrarily. (Note: player 1 won’t be told the fact that player 2’s choice was based on what player 1 filled, the game just asks player 1 to answer whatever he/she likes, and telling that will “help” player 2.)

More about the experience, I want the player 2 to feel that all the choices are totally dependent, frustration and struggle are what I am aiming for in this piece.

Inspiration & Iteration process:

Throughout the semester, I had been interrogating myself the same question again and again, that is, what is “experimental game”, well it seems easy to answer but I was struggled to find my own answer to this. I find it difficult for me to come out with an idea that can be approved by myself when I’m thinking of making a game just focuses on a certain aspect. For this project, at the beginning I started with the idea “I want to create a text-based game which player don’t make choices but write their own.” And apparently, it turns out someone had already done that before. But one thing I learned from that is I must make my goal more specific, more extreme, and with more strict design limitations, that is how I came out with this final version.

In the final version, I want player 2 to be frustrated and struggle to choose the word, additionally why I choose the story to be a self-introduction of a person is I think the answers player 1 answers, when they become choices for player 2 writing a self-introduction, it feels like player 1 is creating a “standard” for the character, I want to criticize the aspect that the standards created by other people may limits who you could became.

The first iteration was pretty frustrating for me because when I found out the ideas I came out had already been done, however I think it does happen a lot and it’s a good lesion for me, especially it gives me the chance to re-think about my ideas and make it more unique than before. It is also pretty much my overall learning experience/understanding throughout all 4 projects, that finding the way to make your idea expressive and unique.




  • Can have any number of players
  • Each player was given a paper with series of instructions written on
  • The Instructions  include: action 1 & action 2 & conditions for triggering the actions
  • For each player, he or she can choose to do either or both the actions, and they will get a reward at the end of each run according to which action they took, reward 1 for action 1, reward 2 for action 2.

The full set of instructions for all players:

For example:

Player 1 has a piece of paper written with:

Do: Clapping

Or: Run infront of the person and clap

When you see a stranger with brown hair

Player 2 has:

Do: Jump 10 times

Or: Go next to the person and clap with the person

When you see someone claps

So once someone started the action, the “chain” will start going, player 1 triggers the condition for player 2, and then player 3…

I started with the idea of making a game about people have no idea what they are doing but they have to achieve a goal to overcome the awkwardness. The two moves on each paper were always divided into two types, one is something you can do on your own like clapping, jumping, smashing the table, and the other move is always something you have to interact with another person.

Why I made the rules this way is because I want to test out how strong the barriers it would be to go to talk/interact/play with someone you may don’t know in order to get a reward in a game, it seems difficult to convince me to talk to a stranger to play with me, and I am curious what’s the reason or motivation for people to play with audiences. For example in the performance art, audiences always play an essential role, in this game I want to find out the what effects the playfulness in between players and audiences since they are all strangers to each other.

The ideal scenario would be this game take place in a “serious” scenario, such as a meeting, a class, a conversation, and something triggers the head of the chain, and suddenly the entire room goes chaos..However I’m not able to make this happened, so instead I just tweaked the rules a little to make it fit the scenario I can have for the playtest.

The playtest went well in general but something I forgot to cover brought some confusion. First of all is the rule for rewards, I didn’t make it specific when it comes to the rewards so I just announced “every time you do the action, you can get a reward.” Which brings a bit of chaos in the end.


In the end nobody actually go straight up to a stranger and play with them, instead people tend to play with familiar people, which is not surprising, and I wrote the instructions intentionally vague so I can observe where the intervention takes place. For example, for some conditions, I wrote: when you see someone doing something cool, run around the person. I didn’t force that the person has to be a stranger, I want to see when players can cross the barriers to play with people they don’t know.


In the end unfortunately I have to admit that I didn’t find things I expected to see, there are also a lot of details need to be improved in this piece.

Appropriation final- Shixin Nie

Original rules:

Two players playing tic-tac-toc with additional rules:

  • Each turn the player uses the marker to mark on one grid, and after that, names a body part.(left hand, right hand, left eye …whatever that makes sense and both players agrees), since then the opponent player cannot use the body part that named until the “state” resets.
  • When the player was unable to play,  skip that player’s turn, and resets both players’ “state”.


Final Rules:

  • Two players playing a Tic-tac-toc like game on a 9×9 grid.
  • Every 3 connecting (same type) marks gives the player an extra move, and chain the marks up(circle them) to indicate they will not be applied to this rule again.
  • Each turn the player uses the marker to mark on one grid, and after that, names a body part.(left hand, right hand, left eye …whatever that makes sense and both players agrees), since then the opponent player cannot use the body part that named until the “state” resets.
  • When the player was unable to play,  skip that player’s turn, and resets both players’ “state”.

Iteration process:



Statement & Iteration:

I was inspired by the concept of the Dada movement that taking out the functionalities of objects and remake them to give new meanings and definitions, such as the readymades, the components were nonfunctional but with combining/modifying it makes a pretty interesting result. Same as that, to applied the similar abstract concept I was thinking of adding/combining two totally different game type/mechanics together, or taking some essential part of rules from each, to complete the appropriation.

The first idea I came out is adding physical elements to a strategic board game. To be more specific, I want to add parameters that were very difficult to measure (like basketball, the real-life physics were considered to be the parameter in this case) to a game that requires a lot of accurate calculation/strategic moves.(like chess)

So I came out with this additional rules, each turn players named a body part to limit the opponent, because I think this not only brings iterations and challenges to both of the players, also changes the game dynamic during gameplay.

So in order to make this more straight forward, I thought I would start with something more simple, such as a “solved game” as a base rule to appropriate on, because I thought adding new rules might add something new to this.

After the first playtest there is only one major issue is that the game is too short to play, so I changed the grid to 9×9 and added new adapted rules to the original tic-tac-toe, where the player can have 1 extra move when the player has 3 marks chained together.

The result turned to be pretty good, players are very creative on the use of mechanics, that it’s really difficult to predict what’s their strategy is because of the ambiguity of names of body parts, which is a very fun aspect of this game, and it’s very fun to watch people play with a lot of physical restrictions to use the marker.


The marks made on the paper, the up-left “X” was marked by the player holding the marker by his legs and finally marked on the wrong grid. (Sorry I didn’t take picture of the final playtest, but it looks pretty much the same as the first playtest posted above.)


Non-Sense Playtest iteration


2 players are playing “Reversi”, with additional rules:

About Reversi:


  • Each turn when a player finishes putting down the piece, name a sense/part of a body, from now on the opponent cannot use the part the player named. For example,  eyes, nose, ears, leg, arm, mouth…as long as it makes sense to you and audiences. (Also only one part could be named each time, which means, for instance  instead of saying vision, you can only name  either left eye or right eye each time.)
  • When the player was unable to play, and only when he/she admitted that,  skip that player’s turn, and resets both players’ “state”.
  • The “disable rule” only applies to the player when the piece touches player’s body.

Iteration process:



The initial idea was two players playing  tic-tac-toe, a lot simpler than the final version playing reversi, but during the playtest the game ends quickly although there are some funny moments occurred during the gameplay. So I think playing a game with a little bit more complexity plus the rules added above would be doable.

During the playtest it seems when playing tic-tac-toe with these rules, occasionally players have to find the way to hold the pen, I found it very interesting and added the rule ” The “disable rule” only applies to the player when the piece touches player’s body.” to adapt the mechanic to the new version, it also gives people chances to play around with it.


For Group A

-One person

-You have  a lap-top

-Having a deck of cards

-Each time draw a card

-For each card there’s a word

-Guided by your own rules, you can search, type, or whatever

-Show something to the other group

-Then draw next card

-Repeat previous steps, show something

-Do not show cards to others only when the game is over

For group B

-Any number of people

-Each person have two cards, “Yes” or “No”

-The person from the other group will show you something

-Guided by your own rules, raise yes or no


Do you remember the first time when standing in front of a bunch of people and everybody is holding their breathe waiting for you to speak the next sentence? What kind of feeling you have during that moment? Scared? Excited? Or like both mixed emotions that really hard to describe?

This was inspired by Yoko Ono’s “GrapeFruit” and as a person who loves playing games, rather than watching others performing, I prefer letting everyone come and have fun.

I’m very interested in how people express themselves, because it’s really really really difficult to correctly convey one’s idea to another, letting others to accept your mind-set is even more difficult. Thus we will be terrified, because we are aware of we’ve been judge by others, but at the same time we really want others to understand ourselves.

So this is the starting idea for my score, initially it was only two people play against each other, showing things they have searched and take turns, and after several play test with my friends I realized this wasn’t “fun” enough, more specifically I don’t feel the excitement that I want people to feel in this version, and then I found the reason is the number of participants, when with only two people, for example, me and you, when I was told to show you something, it’s more about personal relationships, I may concern if I show something disturb you may damage our friendship, or I may know your characteristic and show something please you in purpose, well that sounds a little bit improper but you get what I’m trying to say here. Comparatively it’s different when it comes to your “public image”, it’s more about self-expressiveness rather than relationships, we all have the moment when we were misunderstood, not only misunderstood, people will sketch their own image for you, which is definitely an experience, good or bad? Well if you want one answer out of two, I strongly encourage you to play this again, that is another thing I want to express in this piece,  things don’t necessary need to have an answer.

That’s basically how I iterated this piece to the final version, from 1 to 1 version, it changes to 1 to many, and I just explained the kind of experience I want people to have as a player in group A, as for people in group B, the experience will be totally different.

As a player in Group B, you are supposed to give a “Yes or No” answer for everything the person from Group A shows. What I think about this is that I want it to reflect the real-life situation where people put “good” or “bad” “tags” on things which makes them easier for decision making. However for something there isn’t a necessary answer to divide things into left or right, yes or no, good or bad, so I hope forcing people to judge things this way may make them feel the same as I do.

As I mention I try to make 2 groups have different experience, and in order to enhance both, I turned my target to the choice of words on the cards. People from Group B will not see what the person draws, there is already a gap between these 2 group of people, this is the gap of communication I previously mentioned, in this case, what if there is also an ambiguity in the expression included?

Even I know this “game” will be different every time I, I’m still very surprised that I couldn’t guess any of the words when Lexie shows to us. Even though whose words were written by me.