Reality is a Game

Game thinking from Adam Clare

Category: Education(Page 1 of 9)

A Game About Game Ideas

My most recent game is out and you can get it now for iOS and Android! Game Design Improv is all about generating and pitching game ideas!


You can play it as a fun party game or use it to generate game ideas for your own purposes (as in for games you’re making). Inspired partly by Oblique Strategies, the game will help you conquer and creative difficulties you may have! Ok, maybe not all of them – but some. At the very least it can be used to get you out of whatever the equivalent is of a writer’s block for a game designer.

Game Design Improv screen

It’s an evolution of my One Game a Month game of the same name which I made two years ago(!). Indeed you can see the previous version and the most recent version in the screenshots below. It’s obvious the impact good art direction can have, and for that I must thank Samet Choudhury.

Original version of the game idea game

Original version of the game idea game

Game Design Improv screen of game ideas

Game Design Improv

From Wero Creative.

Generate game ideas like never before!

Have fun competing with others to create the best (or just hilarious) game idea! You can also use it on your own for some fun last-minute game jam ideas.

Game Design Improv is a digitized game design exercise which I use to quickly produce ideas for games in all forms. It’s all about quickly creating game ideas based on limited information in a fun way.

Use it to come up with ideas for:
– Video Games
– Escape Games
– Board Games
– Puzzle Games
– Any other games!

The way to play it is to use what’s presented on the screen in a short ~1 minute game pitch. Keep it quick and it works as a fun, quick, useful activity.

This started at Board Game Jam and has evolved into this app you see in front of you now. You really should download it as there is nothing to lose and everything to gain.

Wero Creative wants you to make games! Do whatever you want with the ideas you generate from this app – no restrictions!

Game Design Improv screen of game ideas

Get it now on iOS and Android!

Game Design And Development Continuing Education At Sheridan

Are you interested in learning more about to make or think about games? Then check this out!

I’m teaching Game Design and Development continuing education classes at Sheridan College and you should sign up if you’re interested in making games!

This is the first time that Sheridan is offering a continuing education class on Game Design and one Game Development. It’s going to be a great chance for you to try out if you’d like to further engage with the world of gaming. Perhaps you’re debating returning to school or you’re wondering if the games industry is for you. In either case, these Sheridan classes are for you!

The first class is on Oct. 17th, and you can still register!

Check it out:

Game Design
Game Development
All of Sheridan’s digital media courses

To answer the inevitable questions about my other classes, yes I’m still teaching at Ryerson and George Brown.

Zynga and Rand Corporation on Educational Games

Navigating educational games can be an arduous process at times. Sometimes games are too blunt in their teaching while most educational games are difficult to find for a variety of reasons. Despite these difficulties there are more games being made every year with the goal to educate people. And a study this year found that 55% of teachers surveyed use games weekly.

Forbes recently had an article on Zynga supporting educational games with Co.lab.

Whether selling games and apps directly to consumers or to institutions, there are unique challenges. Sosnik and White find that most developers have great ideas but they are missing one (if not more) pieces of the puzzle. Perhaps they don’t know how to include assessments mapped to standards. Perhaps they don’t understand how to bring an app to scale. Perhaps they struggle with marketing, or engagement, or user interface. Co.lab has designed a program “tailored to the specific needs of games-based learning startups” that brings together “NewSchools Venture Fund’s educational and edtech expertise and’s access to best-in-class talent and resources from the world of commercial games.

Rand Corporation released a report on their take on educational games (Thanks to @Aidaneus!). The report looked at engagement metrics and reaches the obvious conclusion that it’s not a good idea to use screen time. They looked at more than that and reached some interesting conclusions on early childhood education games. Their recommendation are rather good (even if they are ambitious):

  • Changing policy mandates and funding at the local, state, and national levels, though typically a slow process, will be critical to redefining developmentally appropriate technology use in classrooms.
  • Simple, clear guidance (e.g., a short fact sheet that defines developmentally appropriate use, public awareness campaigns) could immediately begin to influence ECE providers’ and families’ understanding of appropriate technology use.
  • To address concerns among early childhood educators about the lack of models or exemplars of effective, appropriate integration of technology into ECE, demonstrations of appropriate use should be developed and distributed to provide support to these educators.
  • Existing software and application rating systems are useful in providing simple, accessible assessments of media content can help busy or uncertain providers and families, and these types of systems should continue to be supported and updated to provide support.

CBC’s The Current Examines Game Techniques Used In Classrooms

I was a guest recently on (my favourite) CBC show: The Current. They invited me in to talk with Lee Sheldon and Rebecca Rufo-Tepper about how game mechanics and game design theory is altering the way educators approach classroom teaching. It was a good discussion and you can listen to it online!

The buzzword in education is gamification. These students are studying game design, and taking a course from one of gamification’s pioneers.

Lee Sheldon is a professor in the Games and Simulation Arts and Sciences program at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He is one of the first to design his classes as multi-player games, and a leader in gamification.

Adam Clare is a professor of Game Design at George Brown, and a Lead Game Designer at Wero Creative in Toronto.

Rebecca Rufo-Tepper is one of the founding design partners of Quest To Learn school in New York City.

More at The Current.

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