Challenging Games for Change’s Designers and Gabe’s Gamification History

Challenging Games for Change’s Designers and Gabe’s Gamification History

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Games for Change and Its Needed…Change

I was recently in Melbourne for GSummitX and Workshops (next up, GSummit 2013) and joined the faculty of Games for Change Australia and New Zealand. The event was put on by the talented and awesome Marigo Raftopolous — someone you should know, if you don’t already. Although the event wasn’t huge, there was a lot of interest and — as usual for a change-oriented event — tons of passion around the power for games to change the world.

But I see some issues that require immediate attention. Principally a rapidly emerging gap between the promise and the track record of socially-oriented gamified interventions. Why, with all the good intentions, is success so fleeting? And what can the high-minded practitioners in the industry do about making it better? Lastly, I wondered — how do the Gamification and Games for Change movements work together to help improve outcomes?

These were some of the questions I set about to answer in my talk (video below). It’s a bit controversial, but fundamentally optimistic — a characteristic that all sincere agents of change believe in. I also shared the arc of my personal history: how I came to do what I do (and love) and some tidbits about the early days of gamification as we know it. Enjoy — (also some NSFW language present).

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