April 18: Games & Media Summit
June 23-24: The 13th Annual G4C Festival
Through a partnership with 3BLACKDOT, The event will combine on-stage sessions and demos of the latest gaming tech with an on-site games arcade. We will also be joined by top YouTube celebrities, some reaching millions of young subscribers and game players for a special live gameathon! Early bird passes to the Tribeca Festival Hub will go on sale soon on the Tribeca Film Festival site — more info to come!
More to come soon…
In game design, this is important because of the way repetition can enable the mastery of a concept — simple or complex. While the loop in a game for entertainment creates interest and retention, the loop in a learning game intertwines both engagement and instructional interaction.
For instance, the adventure role-playing game Mars Generation One: Argubot Academy EDU, developed in collaboration with NASA and the National Writing Project, teaches argumentation skills through robotic battles. Targeted argumentation skills were informed by existing Educational Testing Service and Common Core standards in argumentation and writing.
Looping Data, Gameplay, and Outcomes Together
Digital games afford deeper and richer streams of data to assess players’ learning and improvement , increasing opportunities and impact for players. A major challenge game developers and educators run into, however, lies in identifying meaningful learning evidence within thousands of virtual data points. How do we make all of this information useful?
The GlassLab Analytics Engine was created to empower developers to systematically connect in-game events to evidence of learning and visualize it in a way that was easy to use in any learning environment. It supports the alignment of learning design with system-wide data structures that enable powerful learning insights . Beyond that, the Engine facilitates the more effective onboarding of high-quality digital games onto the GlassLab Games — also known as the STEAM engine of learning games.
Soon, GlassLab will be releasing new tools that make it easier for developers to connect the data from what happens in-game to tangible learning outcomes — potentially reducing two months of typical integration time by an eighth of the time (taking as little as a single week!).
By applying what GlassLab has learned during its three-year research period, the studio hopes to streamline the creation of data-powered learning reports into archetypal structures that new developers can simply plug into, implement according to their games’ natural structure, and begin using to produce reports that GlassLab’s design process will help developers connect to content and learning standards.
[ Update: The call for submissions has ended. Thanks for everyone who entered! ]
Help Drive the Conversation About The Risk of Nuclear Weapons
Nuclear proliferation remains one of the most vexing and complex issues of our time. Though the Cold War ended long ago, today’s nuclear security situation is more volatile than ever.
But with such a huge challenge comes an even bigger opportunity for innovation, and who better to tackle this issue than the gaming community, known for their creativity and collaborative problem solving. A new design competition is calling on innovators to save the world, in real life, by inspiring creative solutions and novel approaches that foster greater understanding of nuclear proliferation and its related safety and security challenges.
Games for Change is looking for ideas for games that address the risk of nuclear weapons.
The N Square Challenge is a $10,000 game design competition, sponsored by N Square, a two-year pilot working to inspire nuclear safety solutions.
The challenge invites anyone, anywhere, to conceptualize a game that will engage and educate players about the dynamics of nuclear weapons risk. No prior game design experience or subject matter expertise is required. You supply the idea, and we’ll design the game.
The winning design idea will receive a $10,000 cash prize!
- Oct. 22: Contest announced
- Nov. 22: Submissions due
- Dec. 10: Winner selected and notified
The winning game idea will receive $10,000 and will be developed into a playable game and featured as part of a traveling pop-up innovation lab experience. Development will be done by a third-party game developer if your team is not able. N Square will cover all costs for development and promotion of the full game.
Click here for a complete background, competition guidelines, and criteria.
One of the “new ways” that we’re most proud of is GameUp, a curated collection of online learning games from leading educational game publishers. As educators ourselves, we loved the idea of using digital games in class. We saw a ton of great games out there, we knew how engaging they could be, and we knew that engaging kids meant motivating them. But as we spoke to teachers about games for learning, we found that many of them — although enthusiastic and not entirely new to the concept — weren’t always sure how to effectively bring games into their classroom.
GameUp was born out of our desire to help teachers expand their use of online games, showcase some of the games we saw, and give kids a new way to learn. We sought to build a portal to quality games that teachers could trust — pre-vetted by us and bundled with implementation strategies, lesson ideas, assessment tools, and an array of other resources. To best accomplish that, we partnered with a range of leading educational game publishers including non-profit organizations, independent game developers, museums, and universities.
Four years after its launch, GameUp is home to more than 120 learning games on 400+ topics, from dozens of game publishers. We’ve hosted more than 8 million hours of gameplay — 4 million in the last year alone — and we look forward to evolving to meet the needs of our users. BrainPOP remains committed to supporting teachers as they explore new pedagogies, and to making the classroom a playful, meaningful environment in which all students can learn.
For more about the unique relationship between GameUp and the game providers we partner with, join us on October 2 for a special G4C Industry Circle Google Hangout. We’ll welcome the team from Learning Games Lab at New Mexico State University for a chat about the impact GameUp has had on their reach and research. Send us Q&A questions in advance by commenting on the Google Hangout page, posting questions during the Google Hangout, or tweeting them with #G4CIndustry!
As the NYC Department of Education and Games for Change get ready to launch the first-ever Games for Change Student Challenge, teachers from all five boroughs are learning how to teach digital game design in their schools during the 2015-16 school year.
In August, 20 teachers gathered at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, Queens, for the first in a series of professional development sessions led by Institute of Play, Globaloria, and Unity Technologies. As part of the training, teachers learned about the game design process and how games can connect people and bridge social barriers.
Through the G4C Student Challenge, hundreds of middle and high school students from public schools across NYC will create original digital games about social issues in their communities, applying their coding skills to real-world challenges including literacy, sustainability, and animal welfare.
The game design process helps students develop critical life skills like systems thinking, problem solving, and design thinking. Game design can also be a powerful teaching tool — helping educators engage students in a hands-on, collaborative, and interest-driven learning experience.
While any middle or high school student enrolled in a NYC public school can participate in the Challenge, teachers selected for the training program receive professional development and in-class support to implement a game design curriculum in their schools using the Globaloria blended learning platform. Professional game designers will visit classes to mentor students throughout the program.
Teachers received an orientation to the design process from Institute of Play, and put their new skills to use creating paper prototypes of games about the Challenge Themes.
Want to participate in the Challenge but not sure if your school will be offering a game design course? First, talk to your principal about ways you can encourage students to create games to submit. Perhaps your school already offers a technology or computer science course in which students could design games. Game design resources, digital game-making tools, and beginner’s guides for students, parents and teachers are also available for free on the Challenge website.
The Challenge launches this September, and the submission deadline is January 30, 2016. A panel of judges including game designers, industry leaders and social innovators will evaluate submissions in February 2016 and select up to six winning games. Prizes will be presented at an awards gala at Museum of the Moving Image in March 2016.
The Challenge is hosted in collaboration with the NYC Department of Education through two innovation initiatives, iZone and Digital Ready, and leaders in the social impact games sector Globaloria, Institute of Play and the Museum of the Moving Image. A consortium of cross-sector partners is providing additional resources, prizes and expertise, including leading game platform Unity and digital learning advocate Susan Crown Exchange (SCE) Foundation. Challenge Theme partners include The New York Times, XPRIZE Foundation, A Kinder World Foundation, NYC Mayor’s Office of Technology and Innovation and the ACLU.
For more information about the Challenge, visit www.g4cstudentchallenge.org.
[ This post originally appeared on PopTech’s website ]
In partnership with PopTech and Steelcase, we’re presenting a talk from our president Asi Burak and an arcade of thought-provoking games on September 10.
This free event is part of the PopTech Roadtrip series, which has ventured around the U.S. and abroad, bringing together the PopTech community to explore new ideas and engage in interesting discussions. Thanks to Steelcase, their next stop is in New York City!
Join us on Thursday, September 10 for a compelling talk around gaming for good and an intimate evening of discovery and conversation.
Did we mention that it’s free? Sign up, tell your friends, and get ready for what will be a fun and informative evening. Drinks and snacks will be served. See you then!
Date: Thursday, September 10
Time: 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Location: Steelcase WorkLife Center, 4 Columbus Circle, New York, NY
Registration: Sign up here
The gist: Hear how games can be used for good from Asi Burak, award-winning game creator and social innovator, and president of Games for Change. He’ll dive into the latest trends, challenges, and successful case studies of the gaming for good movement from around the world.
Games for Change is seeking two production interns to support a range of game development projects. Candidates for this unpaid internship should meet the below qualifications and requirements.
- Very reliable, self-motivated, and proactive
- Passion for and interest in social impact games and video game development (production, design, and development)
- Highly organized and detailed-oriented
- Strong communication skills and ability to work with remote teams
- Desire to share Games for Change’s mission
- Support G4C staff (VP of Production and Program Manager) in daily activities across range of game development projects
- Conduct research on games, game-related programs, tech opportunities and interventions, and game developers
- Communicate and manage outreach to partners seeking support with impact game projects and liaise with game developers, funders, researchers, and evaluators
- Conduct research relating to game projects
- Compose overview documents and concept decks
- Seeking full-time applicants (10-30 hours/week; minimum of six weeks)
- Position based in Boston or New York (with the possibility of remote work for the right candidate)
- Applicants must be enrolled in a college or university-level program
To apply, please send an email with the subject line “Production Intern” to Tania Hack, Program Manager ([email protected]). Please send your resume as an attachment and include the following information in the body of the email:
- Availability (hours per week) and location
- School, program and expected graduation year
- Overview of interest and experience with social impact games (design, play, etc.)
- Details on any prior related internship experience
GOOGLE HANGOUT WITH FILAMENT GAMES (SEPT. 17)
Good learning games aren’t designed just for fun; they are designed to teach students predetermined learning outcomes. This case study on the game Backyard Engineers shows how learning games, used in conjunction with other classroom activities, can increase student learning.
Backyard Engineers Case Study
Learning games can be used in the classroom to teach new content, reinforce previously taught content, and measure student learning. Learning games are at their most beneficial when integrated with additional instructional activities . A well-designed learning game can be seamlessly integrated into classroom experiences to create a richer, more dynamic learning ecosystem. Michele Huppert, seventh-grade STREAM (science, technology, reading, engineering, arts, and math) teacher at Spring Valley Middle School in Wisconsin, incorporated Backyard Engineers into her classroom activities and did just that.
In order to bring the advantages of game-based learning into the classroom, Backyard Engineers was incorporated into an interdisciplinary unit tied to Next Generation Science Standards. Not only did the students enjoy participating in the game, results showed an increase in test scores between a pre- and post-test.
The game reinforced concepts that the students were learning during classroom lessons and activities. Concepts included catapult criteria and constraints, structural design, forces, velocity and acceleration, and work and energy.
In addition to playing Backyard Engineers, the students participated in a culminating event in which they were asked to design, build, and test catapults, towers, and heraldic banners. The students were then able to physically play a game similar to that of Backyard Engineers. When working in teams, students developed social and collaborative skills by selecting leaders to fill team positions.