I’m starting to honestly believe that, against all expectations, there are a bunch of people out there who seem deeply interested in the work of translating the Big 5 into game design.

Does that sound stupid? It sort of does to me – I mean, yeah, there was a lot of interest, and there continues to be a lot of interest, and wasn’t that obvious?

It wasn’t. Not even close.

So, before I start to forget it, I’m going to start writing down some of the… stuff? I guess? that led to my presentation at GDC this year. It’s been a weird road, and… well, and I like telling stories. So here we go.

First: my talk at GDC was “The 5 Domains of Play”. In that talk, I presented a preliminary translation of a model of motivation psychology called the “Big 5” into game design principles… or, at least, I made a good stab at it. The talk was well received. Yay!

But I gotta tell ya – getting there was quite a thing. Especially considering my original destination had nothing at all to do with the Big 5. I hadn’t even heard of it when this whole thing began.