Multimedia Technologies and Serious Games

Serious Games approach, Multimedia Communications Lab - KOM, TU Darmstadt, 2012

Serious Games are defined as '.. software applications developed with game technology and game design principles for a primary purpose other than pure entertainment'.

A slightly different definition provide Dörner, Göbel, Effelsberg and Wiemeyer in their textbook on "Serious Games - Foundations, Concepts and Practice (2016)":
'A serious game is a digital game that was created with the intention to entertain and to achieve at least one additional goal (e.g., learning or health). These additional goals are named characterizing goals.'

The Serious Games group at KOM follows this approach and elaborates - in an interdisciplinary context - methods and concepts how to combine game technology and game concepts with information and communication technologies (e.g. sensor technology) and other domain-specific concepts for its use in a broad range of application domains. Hereby, the focus is set on educational settings (digital educational games, collaborative training) and games for health (personalised exergames, cognitive training, urban health games).

Research Focus

The overall aim is to elaborate a reference model for Serious Games resulting in a metadata format to describe Serious Games and to build the ground for a Serious Games portal (information center) as well as a quality label for Serious Games in a long-term perspective. Research topics and challenges are settled around the following three pillars: 

  • Authoring: Effective development and production of Serious Games, authoring process and authoring tools, support for non-programmers, (re-use of) game patterns and interaction templates, cross-platform publishing, procedural content generation.
  • Control: Personalisation and Adaptation, player models, game balancing (single and multiplayer scenarios), game mastering (concepts and tools).
  • Evaluation: Measurement of effects and affects, gaming (and learning) analytics, sensing/context detection, sensor-based measurement of physiological parameters.

Technology Framework StoryTec

In the course of strategic research and collaborative research (with science and industry) the technology platfom StoryTec has been elaborated and is going to be (continously) further cultivated by new RTD achievements. StoryTec contains (1) an Authoring Tool for the creation of interactive, game-based applications and Serious Games, (2) exporters for cross-platform publishing (PC offline, web-based HTML 5 and mobile: Android IOS, iphone) and (3) two versions of a player. Further info:


The Serious Games group at TUDA KOM and httc actively participates as member of the working group on Entertainment Computing of the German Society for Computer Science (GI FG EntCom) and the German Association of game developers (GAME, working group on Serious Games). Further, TUDA KOM is member of the advisory board of the gamearea FRANKFURTRHEINMAIN.


PD Dr.-Ing. Stefan Göbel
Technische Universität Darmstadt
Fachgebiet Multimedia Kommunikation
Rundeturmstr. 10
64283 Darmstadt
S3/20 Room 104

+49 6151 16-20390