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Failed Sim


I have had the pleasure and privilege of attending and presenting at this year’s Games + Learning + Society conference in Madison, WI.

My talk was one in the wonderfully honest, encouraging and educational strand, Hall of Failures.  The strand was an opportunity to share experiences of projects that have delivered surprising results or haven’t met expectations.  For me, it encapsulated the essence of games – improving through failure.

the essence of games – improving through failure

I talked about a project from a few years ago – a game-like simulation for school teachers that despite some excellent content, rigorous prelaunch testing and good intentions simply didn’t deliver what the users needed or wanted.  We revised it.  It stopped being a game but started being useful for this particular audience.  It taught me a lot.

Although the accompanying notes are sketchy, here’s what I presented:

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