Immediate Help Needed and Great PR Available: Can You design a game that reveals the ethical truth of a person?

So here is the deal. A few years ago, after being completely knocked out by the Game Design Challenge at GDC, I proposed to the e-Learning Guild that they do something similar but with a learning bent. I really wanted to catch some of the magic that Eric Zimmerman inspired with his design session.

We’re on the third year of doing the “Immersive Learning Simulation” Design Challenge at the Guild’s conference. We’ve had some interesting design issues like creating a game that reduces the recidivism rate among recently released convicts and creating a game that would help align the two cultures (one African and one Asian) of a two recently merged companies…and we’ve had some great design responses…like Clark Quinn’s focus on the film noir look of the prison game to Alan Levine’s use of “everybody has a mom” as a unifying theme for the merged companies.

This year one of the panelists is Deborah Todd (I’m psyched, see game bio here and I had a great guy from the UK all lined for the second panelist – unfortunately personal problems got in the way and my second panelist had to drop out at the last moment.

All that leads me to this…I am including the challenge for this year below – if you’d like to – put down some thoughts – a couple of images would be great too – on a couple of slides and send them to me – I’ll use them in the session in front of the entire e-Learning Guild DevLearn08 conference on Thursday at 10:45 – yes – please include your logo/site….I’d love to see a great variety of responses and if no one has any issues – I’ll put the coallated set of slides up on slideshare and send the link back out to the whole list? Wadda ya think? Wanna jump in?

Here is the challenge: The challenge this year is “given the recent financial issues, how about we design a game that will help predict or evaluate a player’s
ethical qualities – could you design a game that would reveal the ethical ‘truth’ of a person?”

Please send to me offlist at mark dot oehlert at gmail dot com

I look forward to a deluge of responses…c’mon, its just a couple of slides! 🙂

Mark Oehlert

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Not my skill set but good luck with the challenge. That’s a tough one – ethical truth. How about a game where you are faced with short-term situations that could lead to instant success but potentially affect your long-term situation. I would like to see it address the “greyness” of truth but also show its true impact – like the financial crisis.

Hugh Davidson

Ethical truth? yikes have you done much study on ethics?
Unless your in a religious camp there are no absolutes. Even if you could hypothetically design such a game how many people would actually accept what a computer tells them/infers about what kind of person they are ethically?

Agree with Steve on this one, just work the impacts angle and even then you will have some very real difficulties around complexity and context.

I would design a game that demonstrates the ethical quotient of decisions and how that ethical quotient snowballs in a collision of affective geographies. Try and show people how their decisions become ethical and let them make their own decisions about who they are in that context.