Andrew Thurman is a freelance writer, a business development and content consultant for and an adviser to .
In the nearly 40 years since Atari launched Pong, the first commercially available video game, enthusiasts and designers have elevated the theoretical underpinnings of video games into a whole intellectual discipline. For the scholars and theorists who populate this field, “fun” is not an abstraction or a subjective ambiguity, but instead a concrete state achieved through the strategic deployment of structured game elements – and, according to them, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are boring as dirt.
So what is fun? Raph Koster’s “A Theory of Fun for Game Design” argues that fun is ultimately rooted in cognitive psychology – specifically, our ability to learn. The human mind excels at recognizing patterns, gathering and analyzing information and using those inputs to dynamically respond to new situations. Put differently, fun games are “richly interpretable situations” – a phrase from Craig Perko, who himself it from neuroscientists Biedermal and Vessel.