“Quantified Gamer” is a speculative system design based on wearable technologies acting as a bridge between the body and competitive games, thus augmenting eSports players and the industry. The evaluation for the system includes Value, Feasibility, System Integrity, Testability, User Experience, Prospect, and Critical Analysis.
Value: The key value of the system is to help the eSports players in injury risk detection and performance improvement, and potentially extend their careers. We see a gap in the eSports industry where science and data from both games and players are used in a coherent way to guide the training and competition. Therefore, the original purpose of the system is valuable to the whole industry.
Feasibility: The research on the physiological response and the sensors portrays the potential of data fusion in eSports. However, there is still a lot of basic research that needs to be further developed in each of the specific areas. In this early-stage design, the risk detection and performance evaluation parts are speculated from the research background, which have a long way to go before it is truly put into practice.
System Integrity: This project has built a general setup process and some ways for interpreting the data collected. However, due to the lack of experience in setting up the real physiological response monitors, the overall process is not as detailed as a truly commercial product. For the early prototype, HR data from Apple Watch are accessed via API, which is perfectly incorporated into the setup process designed.
Testability: From a technical point of view, the overlay software based on the HR is testable across other players. More test subjects could be invited to fit the correlation between HR and their game performance. However, the HR alone is not sufficient in most cases based on my research. Therefore, working with experts in such fields and building more testable prototypes is one of the next steps for further development.
User Experience: The interfaces are designed into interactive prototypes, which could be used to gain more testing feedback related to the UI/UX. The overall design is consistent with detailed visual style guides and specific component descriptions in response to different actions. Further improvements lie in building more interfaces covering additional scenarios and developing more precise layout instructions.
Prospect: eSports is a growing market of more than one billion dollars, but there is a lack of related products and systems. Hence, “Quantified Gamer” has a great market base. At the same time, we see the rapid development of wearable devices, so it is foreseeable that such a system could be commonly used in the future. From a business perspective, the system seems to have good commercial value, but since it is still in the early stage, its commercial viability depends on more external factors, including potential future competitors, the cost of wearable devices, and related laws and regulations. These aspects are not much covered in this design, and its business model is still vague. On the other hand, the system was designed from the beginning to incorporate the DNA of the gamer community, therefore it is also a challenge to better serve the whole community and help amateur eSports players and ordinary gamers.
Critical Analysis: The system requires the collection and analysis of a large amount of personal data, therefore extra focus needs to be placed on protecting the privacy of the players and should guard against the misuse of this data by other parties like managers and companies who might embed implicit discriminations. In the current eSports industry, there is a certain amount of controversy and struggle regarding the gender, diversity, and long-term sustainability of players. Therefore, we should be more cautious about using physiological data fusion. In addition, whether the quantified self will be driven only by data, whether they will become only out-come focused, and what impact it will have on the whole industry, all deserve more in-depth consideration. On the other hand, there is now research on the use of external stimuli to improve players' cognitive behaviors and brain performance. Where this research will lead, and whether such wearable devices will be used in the future for eSports and normal players, is also a topic that needs to be discussed from a technological and ethical perspective. The current design does not reflect much critical thinking in terms of data and wearables, so it is necessary to briefly elaborate in the final evaluation.