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Tue, 09/01/2015 - 4:54pm


OK, we've scraped the corners of SUMMER GAME SHOP ORDER FULFILLMENT CENTRAL, and come up with about 300 more thingys to post; the stock now listed in the [|Summer Game Shop] is IT for 2015! Remember that your points don't expire, so any unspent points you have will still be available when the shop reopens in July 2016! Also, if you were waiting to order a second sketch messenger, thanks so much for waiting, now you can HAVE AT IT!

So, while TEAM SUMMER GAME takes a break to regroup, we want to hear from YOU! What were your FAVORITE and NOT AS FAVORITE events, activities, badges, shop items, WHATEVERS? Let us know RIGHT HERE any ideas you have to make SUMMER GAME 2016 even better! Rest assured we read every comment, so if you've got an idea, LET'S HAVE IT! Pour it all out WHILE IT'S STILL FRESH! Thanks to all of you for your support, feedback, enthusiasm, and most of all...



Oh snap! I really wish the Power Tool was restocked! I was saving my points for a few of those because I missed the day that it was put in the shop. :(

My favorite Badge Series was "All Fall Down." I learned a lot about some of the most tragic building mishaps.

I love the park explorer badges and going anywhere where parking is not a hassle. I liked the incorporation of other parts of the city like local government, even more than last year. I loved the poll cat badge -- I had no idea I could do that! It was great. The All Fall Down badges were just disturbing! Whoever thought of that is kind of amazing.

I liked the tour of the downtown library after the renovation and the photo booth, and the cookies were popular too. ;) I liked the gala and would like something like Nerd Night for the whole family on a regular basis, not just during the summer. In fact, during the winter would be appealing, when we've all gotten cabin fever and it gets dark at 4:30 or whatever. Maybe we need a summer game kick off party, too!

I like puzzley badges but wish people wouldn't worry so much if they don't solve them immediately or ever. 2014's Lydia and cryptography badges were great. More easy badges, but I felt too many of the badges were Wikipedia based, and that was a bit dull. It was kind of like a reading comprehension test, and the summer game shouldn't feel like the SAT! And I hope this doesn't sound snooty, because I know you guys work really hard, but there are some typos and grammatical errors and suchlike in a fair number of the clues, and I hate to see an it's/its confusion in the summer game. (Then again, my auto correct doesn't seem to think "its" exists and always changes mine to "it's," so maybe the evil computer is to blame!)

I would like the ability to generate reports from our summer game scorecard of materials read/watched/listened. It seems this was first asked for by some players in 2011 or so, and I think there may still be interest.

Thanks for adding additional functionality to additional users on our account. That made it easier to use.

I can tell you guys worked on eliminating some forms of cheating or laziness on the part of players like posting the same review all over the time, and this year was way better than last year.

My son thinks points for reviews should be based on their length.

I asked Eli about this some time back, and this is a website issue generally, but if you could improve the interface for lists, I would appreciate it. It is awkward once you have more than about ten lists.

Regarding summer game prizes -- more stuff generally! Don't underestimate our craze for AADL. I think there could be fewer messenger bags and more of other types of bags. Like small bags for things in the purse or school bag, for pencils or makeup or other small items. Lunch bags. Giant bags for carrying library materials home in like , only whoa! That's expensive. More pens and pencils. Bring back the umbrella! Also my son suggested something to apply the AADL logo on something of our own, like an iron on or something like that. Stickers, too.

Also it would be nice to be able to see the shop items in person at the branches. It might generate some interest.

Slightly more interesting prizes for adults for the paper game, as we've had in the past, perhaps.

Thank you again!

Some of the final stock items are still showing, Sorry, this item is out of stock. Are there still updates in progress?

Man, I'm really bummed about the water bottles. I wanted a blue one. But I checked the shop before I left work and no update. Then I check about an hour later after getting home, update but water bottles all sold out.

Got my final order in, thanks AADL.

Anyone know if the brick banks really do stack on top of one another at all securely?

Pondering ordering and just wondering how a couple might stack - I'm not looking to build a recreation of Minas Tirith with them on my front lawn.

....Okay, MAYBE that crossed my mind. Well, clearly it has.

I think we should implement a system of likes and dislikes for reviews, so the more helpful (more liked) reviews are at the top of the page, and the least helpful (most disliked) are at the bottom. This would make reading book and DVD reviews better for users, because they might be more enticed to check out an item with in depth reviews rather than reviews that just say "I hated it" or "awesome."

During Summer Game, maybe you could get an initial (small) amount of points for submitting a review, and then get additional points every time someone likes your review. This would make looking at items much more interesting and rewarding.

Thanks for considering my comment!

There are some downsides to allowing negative votes on reviews, and on Amazon, there has been quite a bit of drama with people down voting reviews for various reasons (spite, to promote their own, and so forth) that have little to do with the item being reviewed. I wouldn't like to see such a system, and this could lead to hard feelings that I think are not advantageous to the library generally or the summer game specifically -- I think I would be much more offended by negative votes on the library's page than I am on Amazon, for example, and this could have a chilling effect....It's not as if there are tons of reviews at present, anyway. Maybe a simple option a la Facebook to like would be more appealing, but the social media aspect of AADL catalog could take an ugly turn if people see the summer game as a competition in which competitors should be downvoted.

My favorite badges were the "Party like it's 1999" and "Nerd's the Word," but that's largely because I was a teenage nerd in the 90s and am still a nerd now. "Points Unknown" was really interesting, but more difficult than the other badges, but I enjoyed the unusual clues that were more than just a quick lookup on wikipedia. In previous years, I've really enjoyed the user-made badges. They give you a chance to get to know your fellow players. And the old news and local history badges are always fun.

I don't complete ones that are out in the world, but that's because I don't have a lot of free time, so don't let my opinion sway you. There are plenty of badges for me to get just sitting at my computer.

And Treasure Quest from a few years ago was absolutely amazing, but I am sure it was a lot of work.

I agree with the previously mentioned love of the shop items, and also lots of love for AADL itself. I'd like to see printed badges or stickers or appliques. I also like the new tool items added this year (even though I only managed to pick up the screwdrivers). That would be cool to see again, but I know they are expensive premiums. My office has had trouble finding a good reasonably priced umbrella, so I understand that balance between price and quality.

I was sorry to miss the end of game gala; like I said, I don't have a lot of free time. And I am going to make it to the KRC event one year! I hope next year you have olympic themed badges again as well. Those were enlightening.

The liking and disliking of reviews is an interesting idea, but maybe the drama could be avoided if the number of likes or dislikes are hidden from us normal people. And also, not everyone has the same preference for reviews. For example, I don't have the patience to sit through an in-depth two-paragraph review, and so those are useless to me. When I'm looking at an item and want to read a review, I want one that's clear and succinct, 1 to 3 sentences usually. One or two word reviews can be somewhat helpful if they're not from certain library users who use the same one word to describe everything.

keep in mind, not everyone who writes reviews are adults. Of course, if its a review on War and Peace, I would expect a better review than just "cool", but if its something that a child could reasonably be reviewing, then perhaps a simple review from them isn't unhelpful, its just coming from a childs world.

It wasn't until the friend codes were available that I really felt like I could ask for help on clues.
Somehow having a 'friend' code made me feel like I really was part of the game (it was my first time playing)
Maybe have a board where people looking for and giving help could be added?

I really, really wish that more LEGO people were available, like maybe 10,000! I'm sure that they would have all been snapped up. It seems like the hard part would be making the little shirt template, and any number could have been printed!

Totally agree with this:
I would like the ability to generate reports from our summer game scorecard of materials read/watched/listened.
I'd like to filter by points type. For example, I often want to know if I've entered a particular book (I wait until I'm done with a book and then enter all the pages at once), but I have to wade through a slew of badge-related points to find it. The book cover thumbnails help with recognition, but don't cut down on the scrolling.

Related to that, when I'm looking at a particular item in the catalog I'd like to see my rating separate from the overall rating (like my tags are separate from the overall list) - e.g. if the overall rating is 4.5 and I've rated 2.5, then my 2.5 stars are one color and the rest are the default red. At the very least, I'd like some kind of indication that I have rated (maybe the stars could be different colors if I've already rated?).

Can't think of a particular badge that was my favorite. I like solving puzzles, but don't like major wikipedia dependence. Maybe I overlooked them this year (i don't do all the series), but i appreciate badges that make me dig into the lesser known reaches of the AADL web site - either the oldnews section, or Ann Arbor Cooks, or whatever. Maybe there could have been a badge to get us more familiar with all the Tools the library now stocks. I like the series that have us explore the city, even if I don't always make time to do them. I wanted to do more CivCity badges (such as arborwiki editing), but time did not allow.

Points-o-matic has a mode for rating reviews. Have you all ever managed to integrate the ratings into the catalog system? It seems like they show up chronologically, most recent first. Although I suppose if we haven't contributed many ratings of the reviews, it's hard to integrate them in a meaningful way.

I think you should keep it up with the waterbottles. I'd like to see more bags in the future. Also stationery sets with the AADL logo would be awesome and creative

This is my opinion on this year's Summer Game!

1) I really liked the idea of the friend codes! I've always thought that it would be cool if there was a way you could do something like that! :) So please keep that idea and continue next year! :)

2) My favorite badges have always been the Park Explorer/Arbor Explorer badges! This year I didn't get much time to do the online badges because my family had a super busy summer, but I liked the Gutsy Girls badge series also! (I got a chance to do the Hunger Games badge, and I started some of the other ones like Anne of Green Gables, etc.)

3) I really wasn't that impressed with the Summer Game shop this be honest, it just seemed like a lot of the items were small items, and nothing was very impressive, so I didn't really have as much as a desire to earn points this year :( I only bought one item, and it was the blanket, but the only reason I bought it is to give it to my grandma, because she wanted one(I had bought one last year or the year before, so she has seen mine before).

4) It really didn't seem like the Summer Game Shop had that many items this year...I only got to buy the blanket, when I had wanted to get one of the water bottles, and I was hoping for the milk chocolate also. But they sold out like crazy; I didn't have much time to save up my points that rolled over from last year, and the points I had gotten this year. Most of the items sold out like crazy in general, so I really didn't have much of a selection to choose from :/

5) Last, but not least, please bring back the same water bottles from this year(with a bigger stock), and maybe the chocolate too! And I liked the idea of packages better, like that has been done the past few years but was stopped this year, because I could just get mostly everything I wanted in one package/one order! :) Though I understand the perspective of it means less people get to buy items from the Summer Game Shop ;)

Thank you for reading my opinion on this years Summer Game! Hopefully next summer I will be able to play more! :)

Interesting idea to have like/dislike on reviews. It is very annoying to plow through dozens of "cool!" and "awesome book!" reviews to get to something you can actually use. The points-o-matic has the "helpful/not helpful" choice, but it doesn't seem that unhelpful reviews are ever moved to the bottom or removed. I know some are by kids, but you can tell that many of them were written by someone just to get points - you see the same review by the same person on a whole slew of books. A "review" is different than a "rating". "cool!" is a rating in words.

Thanks for bringing back the blanket. The glasses were nicer than I expected. I'm sorry I missed out on the tools, that would be great to have next year. Oh, to have the umbrella back - it was the best and mine broke.

I also miss the black hat. Mine is lost somewhere in Wyoming (boo-hoo). The white/black brim one was not as good.

I had so little time to do badges this year, but the Civ City ones seemed like they would be cool, as did the "explore ann arbor" ones. I always appreciate things that get us to know our library or our city a little better.

My fave (that I did) this year were the etymology ones. Words are so interesting!

What about a calendar? Maybe even with a monthly game -- there could be a hint in the calendar and then it could be online, just a quick game, not a *Game*.

I would really like to see a scavenger hunt all next summer long dealing with the fairy doors here in A2. I know of some but I really love to find more and i love the exercise all these scavenger hunts around the city give me because even though it is great to sit down and read it is also great to get some exersice and maybe find some more great parks or quit areas to read outside.
Thanks for the wonderful game this year and i can not wait untill 2016

Thanks for asking-- here are my thoughts:
-- I, too, was disappointed that it seemed the summer game shop had fewer items this year. If things are posting one night and sold out by morning, that's too fast. I understand that there are probably limited funds, though, so to me that means that the shop items might need to cost more. I do think some things still need to cost less, to allow new players or kids to still be able to purchase some things, but maybe higher-value items for those of us who have accumulated points for a few years could cost even more?
-- I really appreciate the wide variety of ways to earn points-- scavenger hunts in real life and online allow people of differing abilities, schedules, and interests all to participate-- keep up that good balance!!
-- I did not appreciate the friend codes-- it seemed like allowing people to post them for all to see was just "cheating," and not an authentic representation of friends at all. With badges, there seems to be a collective appreciation for not "giving it away" as people help each other and give each other clues , but the friend code frenzy blasted that all out of th water, and I didn't really like it. Maybe instead, friend codes were automatically generated for people as they complete the same badges or review the same books, thus actually connecting people who might share common interests other than accumulating points.
-- Ditto requests for the umbrella again. Also, I would really love another large, high-quality, soft cooler, even if it costs more . In general, I think providing nicer stuff, even if it costs more, would be appreciated. I liked the porcelain travel coffee cups and the blankets are always awesome. The tools, sewing kits, power supply were all wonderful ideas that were sold out before we could get to them. :(
-- Kudos for encouraging civic engagement beyond the AADL with the CivCity badges-- very nice.
-- Also, I enjoy how there's a theme every year, like the terrarium thing last year and legos this year, but also the circus/acrobatic/minecraft subthemes of this summer.
- Thanks for not being overwhelmed at the participation levels and the commitment to continue to offer this game in some form!!

Thanks so much for the summer game! We've been playing since it began in 2011, and always enjoy it (and miss it when it's done!)

I enjoy the online badges best.

I agree with Family_Coffman about the Friends codes. I was hesitant to use them until the last few days because I didn't know what it meant, and therefore missed out on lots of points!

I appreciate all and any free stuff, but I especially loved the backpacks of a few years ago, and would love to see those again! These could cost more points, since points have become easier to get.

Thanks again; this was lots of fun!

I agree that my idea about the review like/dislike system could turn our library website into a social media hierarchy. Perhaps a solution would be to only be able to like the review (as willow said) but also to have the number of likes a review gets hidden (as SBNB commented). Therefore no one would know if anyone liked their review, and the only sign would be if it was at the top. I agree that some reviews are too long or too short, so maybe the above suggestions would enable reviews of just the right length be seen.

I agree with Family_Coffman about the soft cooler - the black one from a year or two ago is fantastic! We use it all the time! It was nice to have the smaller one available this year/last year, but it was smaller than I like to have. The bigger one was perfect for a family lunch.

One of the best parts of previous games for me was the mystery items that were included in the packages. Is there any way you could bring them back without the packages?

A vote here for TEA represented in the summer game next year. Tea Haus is a local purveyor of fine tea. Lisa, the owner would likely be more than happy to partner for next year's game in some way - be it a window display (like this year's legos). Or get their tea in the shop. :-)

In reply to by echternk

As for liking and disliking reviews - I have a simple suggestion...

Add a "flag review" button. For those that post reviews like "great" and in the text "great" - those reviews are neither useful nor meaningful for anyone. The "flag review" button would be useful, because pressing it would give options such as "this review is not helpful/useful", or "this review is offensive". The library staff can then review and delete anything that violates terms for reviews. (and hopefully remove summer game points if any were awarded).

It bugs me to no end to see one word reviews posted all over the catalog during summer months. To me that says that someone was trying to get points by putting in little to no effort.

echternk - I think the one word / duplicate reviews issue was solved. It bugged me last year but seemed to not exist so much this year.

I love the idea of a fairy door badge! That would be fun.

I think there may need to be greater clarification of what counts as a hint in discussions of badges. I don't think it's always clear to some people what crosses the line.

For those wondering (about my own question), yes, the BRICK BANKS do stack securely on top of each other, so that may be pertinent to any last-minute purchases!

I would love to see a series of badges that are devoted to popular book series of the 80's
1) Sweet Valley series
2) Baby sitters Club
3) Choose your own Adventure
4) Encyclobida Brown
and so on. I think a series liike this one would not only bring back great memories for those of us that read them back in the day but it is a great way to relay those memories to our children and get a whole new genreation into reading.

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