CISTI'2014 - 9ª Conferencia Ibérica de Sistemas y Tecnologías de Información

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Serious Games for the Elicitation of Way-finding Behaviours in Emergency Situations

Understanding human behaviour in emergency evacuation from buildings is of utmost importance for fire safety designers, architects and engineers as they elaborate on strategies to improve the emergency paths to exits. This paper describes an experiment designed to elicit human behaviour when facing the urgent need of exiting a room of an unknown building. This test is part of a methodological approach that aims at the creation of a framework coined SPEED (Simulation of Pedestrians and Elicitation of their Emergent Dynamics). A population sample of 22 subjects was used to test such a methodological approach, which consists in having the subjects answering a questionnaire and later on, in playing a Serious Game. The game environment presents the same scenarios shown in the questionnaire using more elaborated 3D rendering to provide players with a sense of realism. The game was developed under the Unity3D game engine and based on the Serious Games concept. Preliminary results are promising, showing that the challenge made players think about the various situations that might happen when facing an emergency. They are also implied to reason on their stream of decisions, such as which direction to take considering the environment and some adverse situations, such as smoke, fire and people running on the opposite direction of the emergency signalling.

Author(s):

João Emílio Almeida    
University of Porto
Portugal

João Tiago Neto Jacob    
University of Porto
Portugal

Brígida Mónica Faria    
Polytechnic Institute of Porto
Portugal

Rosaldo J. F. Rossetti    
University of Porto
Portugal

António Leça Coelho    
LNEC
Portugal

 

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