playgenRecently I received a very excited phone call from my good friend and colleague Dr Melissa Bordogna, squealing with delight about a really cool resource she had just found online.  Fast forward a few weeks and now that I am in possession of said resource and had a little time to play with it myself, I have to say that I agree with her!

addingplay ™ by Playgen is a set of 52 cards designed to help you create games.  The fun thing about this tool is that you actually play a game to make a game!  There are four types of cards: Motivator, Game Mechanic, Victory Condition and Social Mechanic.  This is how the game goes:

  1. Pick 2 Motivator cards to define player motivations, i.e. the reasons people would play the game
  2. Pick 1 or 2 Victory Conditions which define how players will succeed
  3. Pick up to 5 Game Mechanics, which are essentially the rules of the game
  4. Pick up to 5 Social Mechanics to define how players interact with each other during the game.

It’s as easy as that!

This activity is best done in small groups to help with the creative flow around game themes, etc., but it’s an awesome way to introduce a process around gamifying your learning without making it too complex.  Interestingly, the product is marketed to help gamify brands or products but I think this is a great way for instructional designers who are just getting started with gamification to tap into a process for creating games in their learning, whether that be online or offline.

Melissa tried addingplay™ out on attendees at a learning conference recently and much fun was had by all!  For the very reasonable price of £24.95 I’d say it’s worth having a go.

If gamification of learning is something you’re interested in, you can hear Melissa speaking on “Gamification in practice: 3 tips for quickly gamifying your designs” at iDesignX in Melbourne next February.