WagerBall Thesis Draft

Thesis Sentence draft 01: This project will be a mashup of a traditional mechanical tabletop game that explores the boundaries of wagering and transactional socialization by utilizing real-time digital feedback.

Thesis Sentence draft 02: Wagerball is a tabletop soccer penalty kick game (in the tradition of foosball) that uses various digital sensors to track, log and report gameplay status and scores.

Thesis Paragraph draft 01: This project will use a Soccer penalty kick scenario to invite player interactions. Allowing players to “commit” to a “bet” via a third party application and using digital feedback directly related to the outcomes will create an opportunity to observe the social patterns of wagering with digital funds vs. real world cash. Will players feel compelled to bet more money at a higher frequency once they have the ability to complete a transaction online using digital currency, coins or other rewards or will they choose to use discretion as if they were playing with real money? This is a question I hope to answer after watching players interact with my project.

List 3 “big findings” that came out of the evolution of your prototypes: 1) The mechanical elements need to be scaled properly to ensure fairness in the play experience, specifically for the goal keeper. 2) Asking the defender to change the arm positions of the goal keeper prior to the penalty kick adds an element of chance. 3) Adding a “shot clock” increases the pressure on the shooter and simulates the stress of a real penalty kick situation.

List 3 differences between your work and that of prior art: 1) My project combines mechanical gameplay with digital sensing whereas most tabletop games encourage purely physical play. 2) My project connects chance, skill and digital wagering. 3) My project can be configured and presented as a DIY project.


5 Questions I would Ask the Perfect Guest Critic:

1. How could I improve the form factor of my project?

2. Do you think I should allow the defender to move the goalies arms up and down in real time?

3. Do you know anything about wagering and gambling laws and regulations in the United States and abroad?

4. How could you see this being played? By what age group and in what environment?

5. Do you like the simple retro sounds and gameplay mechanics or should I strive for more realism (e.g. chanting crowds, music)

I would love to get feedback on the playability of my game and my exploration of wagering dynamics.