Demonstration of a Serious Game for Spoken Language Experiments - GDX

, and . Workshop on Games and Natural Language Processing, page 68--78. Marseille, France, ACL, European Language Resources Association, (May 2020)


Increasing efforts are put into gamification of experimentation software in psychology and educational applications and the development of serious games. Computer-based experiments with game-like features have been developed previously for research on cognitive skills, cognitive processing speed, working memory, attention, learning, problem solving, group behavior and other phenomena. It has been argued that computer game experiments are superior to traditional computerized experimentation methods in laboratory tasks in that they represent holistic, meaningful, and natural human activity. We present a novel experimental framework for forced choice categorization tasks or speech perception studies in the form of a computer game, based on the Unity Engine -- the Gamified Discrimination Experiments engine (GDX). The setting is that of a first person shooter game with the narrative background of an alien invasion on earth. We demonstrate the utility of our game as a research tool with an application focusing on attention to fine phonetic detail in natural speech perception. The game-based framework is additionally compared against a traditional experimental setup in an auditory discrimination task. Applications of this novel game-based framework are multifarious within studies on all aspects of spoken language perception.

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