Replay Penalties in Cognitive Games

  • Matthew W. Easterday
  • I. Yelee Jo
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8474)


Replay penalties that punish players by making them repeat progress are ubiquitous in video games yet noticeably absent from tutors, creating a dilemma for designers seeking to combine games and tutors to maximize interest and learning. On the one hand, replay penalties can be frustrating and waste instructional time, on the other, they may increase excitement and prevent gaming the system. This study tested the effects of replay penalties on learning and interest. In a randomized, controlled experiment with a two-group, between subjects design, 100 University students played two versions of Policy World, an educational game for teaching policy argument, with and without penalties that forced students to replay parts of the game. Results showed that replay penalties decreased learning and interest. These findings suggest a minimize penalties principle for designing cognitive games.


intelligent tutoring educational games serious games penalties 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Matthew W. Easterday
    • 1
  • I. Yelee Jo
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Education and Social PolicyNorthwestern UniversityEvanstonUSA

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