indiePub has published an article by indie game developer David Silverman that offers suggestions for creating meaningful gameplay in video games.
From the article:
"Games have the capability to let the player experience true love, the loss of a loved one or just have a good time. They can even offer seemingly impossible experiences like meeting aliens or passing through intergalactic wormholes.
Conveying all that through game mechanics is not quite as cut-and-dry as doing it through story, visual art or music but it can be done...
Meaningful gameplay not only tells a story but it also gives you a better understanding of how the game works."