Serious Games and Jane McGonigal

A few days ago, I heart for the first time the concept of Serious Games. I was meeting for my work a famous Game developing company and they mentioned that Serious Games ought to become the fastest growing part of their business.

Serious Games? What the else is that?

A??serious game??is a??game??designed for a primary purpose other than pure entertainment. The "serious" adjective is generally prepended to refer to products used by industries like defense, education, scientific exploration, health care, emergency management, city planning, engineering, religion, and politics. (Wikipedia)

Of course I heard before of virtual world being use as a training for military, but I didn't know public institution were starting creating games to educate children on traffic safety, medical intern on medical procedure….

Last year at CHINCT conference one of the most interesting speak was the one from??Guillaume Wielezynski??of the World Food Program (WPF) when he explain that by cooperating with Zynga during the Haiti crisis they had been able to raise 1.5 millions of money in just 5 day. How? They simply create virtual items, like you can usually buy inside the games for your avatar or for the game purpose (a new weapon, a healing potion…) but for the specific cause. Such virtual goods were for example a bucket a rice for Haiti, you buy it only for – i dont know- 2$ and this 2$ will be 100% donate to the WFP who will buy and ??send food and first aid kits in the disaster area! Isn't it magical when something you would think as shallow as game become a life changing mean for good?

Being is SV where all the dots get connected, I met with someone from VirtGood, a company who easily allow any games developers to raise money for any cause. And because a user that usually dont spend on virtual goods might do their first buy for a good cause, you are converting more free users into paid one as the habit to buy virtual goods would have been created.

Going further than the "buy virtual goods for cause in games" Jane McGonigal, TED speaker and game designer is been an advocate of leveraging all the time and skill we earn playing games and turning them into Real life problem. (See her talk at TED 2012 below).

In this talk she mentioned using games to not have regrets at the end of your life and even increase your life expectancy.??

But I'm thinking… how about selecting the top 5 World of Warcraft players in the world every year and sending them together, as a team, on an offline mission like volunteering to build water filter in Western China?
What if playing MMORP became a way to enroll and get the chance to be selected to join a one-year mission to make the world better?

About Carole (code name 烤肉)

I work in tech since 2008, moved from Reunion island to Paris, Beijing, San Francisco and ended up in Berlin in 2014.
This entry was posted in Being a woman, Tech. Bookmark the permalink.

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