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YSA Serious ARGs – by Jane McGonigal

Posted by admin on July 26, 2010 in Design, Development, Participation |

The massive social game experience created by Jane McGonigal for the World Bank, Evoke, finished a little while ago. But the team is currently having a debrief and will be sharing their lessons learned online. The first post outlines what went right and what went wrong. I’ve summarised the headings here, but go to the post for the full description, solutions, and section on education outcomes.

Top Ten What Went Right:
1. We created an extremely active, productive community from scratch, virtually overnight.
2. We focused on real, intrinsic motivation and real activity.
3. We defined and bounded the experience very clearly: “a crash course in changing the world”, brought to you by the World Bank Institute: 10 Weeks, 10 Missions.
4. We made it social.
5. We designed multiple win levels.
6. We invented the Leader Cloud.
7. We created a highly addictive activity feed.
8. We created a super-satisfying feedback loop: runes automatically lighting up for completed quests and missions.
9. We designed a great hero’s journey (the quests).
10. We created a real “game-changer.” We took full advantage of media opportunities to create an extremely high-profile project – and to tell an urgently optimistic story – and as a result, EVOKE changed what people think is possible.

Top Ten What Went Wrong
1. We failed to start the gameplay soon enough – ideally, during registration.
2. The social world wasn’t bounded enough.
3. Weekly missions and the final EVOKATION weren’t connected enough.
4. We didn’t design meaningful SMS gameplay.
5. We missed the opportunity on real-time mentors.
6. The +1 voting wasn’t fun or meaningful enough.
7. The quests would have been more valuable if they were more integrated with the missions – players using unique strengths and vision to respond to the URGENT EVOKES.
8. Overall, the collective experience of the EVOKE network subsumed the individual journey toward social innovation.
9. We needed more meaningful opportunities for strengths-based collaboration and teamwork.
10. We definitely want to do a better job presenting the EVOKE Code of Ethics and getting player buy-in.

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