Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Game to Teach Geography/History: Find Your Way Home

In this game, you and your classmates pass through a mysterious portal and end up... SOMEWHERE ELSE! Maybe you're in the middle of the ocean, or in a strange land where everyone speaks another language! Your teacher will describe the land, the sights you see there, what the people are like and how they sound. You and your classmates decide together on a course of action as you play, and with the teacher, you create the story of what happens in this land.

As young scholars of geography, it's your job to find out where you are, and that's the only way you will find your way home. Towards this end, you may use resource materials like atlases, encyclopedias, and the internet to research. For advanced players, introduce the fact that portals can also travel through time! You could be anywhere, and anywhen!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Show, don't tell. (Story, not backstory.)

Yes, and...

Hold ideas lightly.

Listen First.

The Rule of Cool.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Sacred Story

For me game and story are one, and they are both sacred. Though what we create may be fictional, the story itself is very real. To break this bond between player and story is to break creativity. We must immerse ourselves in all stories, great or small. Characters matter, relationships matter, story matters. When we forget story, and let it fall to the wayside, characters become unimportant.

Questions are the hallmark of story. If we, as players and characters, have no questions then the story has ended.

As of recent I have found that I no longer truly enjoy games where story is not sacred. Rolling dice, accomplishing missions, leveling up, interacting with others... all of it has no meaning for me if the story is not coming first.

Why? Why should I care about what happens? "Compel me to ask!", my mind screams. I can play without rules, I can jam without dice, I can even create without help, but I cannot do any of this without story. Good story, in my book there is no substitute.