Yesterday, Mark Berthelemy gave us a comprehensive answer to "how is content dead?" This was not sweeping condemnation or diatribe. He nailed the coffin closed incisively and superbly. I'll simply throw a bouquet on the top.
Imagine your audience of learners, trainees, students or attendees already has experience. They have each role played over a hundred different characters. They have hours of practice outfitting their avatar with abilities and resources. They have experimented with different combinations of traits and observed how those choices affected other role players' interactions and one's own outcomes. They know what the letters "MMORPG" stand for (**) and know which ones are the most fun, best challenges and more fulfilling scenarios.
What are the chances they see real people are pretenders? 100%? How can they take their own act seriously when they have changed their traits more times and ways than they can recall. Why wouldn't they expect us to "act like we're acting" and stop pretending we're serious? They must wonder why we don't stop morphing into the same avatar with no settings to adjust, no combinations of resources to explore, and no recognition of other's game face.
So when we are covering material, presenting information or delivering content, they must be astonished. When do they get to pretend to be engaged this process? How do they get to strut their arsenal in the midst of this ordeal? When do they get to confront this assault to their agendas, do battle with this creepy monster, or test the strength of this somewhat clueless, but aggressive warrior?
Why are we in a position of power with no magic spells, weapons or exceptional endurance? What kind of Sim are we that insists on acting the same way all the time? How can we think we are succeeding when the way they keep score says we are accumulating significant penalties and no points in the game. Which beginner level are we still playing on and when will we face the next set of challenges on our own quests?
** massively multiplayer online role play games