Reality is Broken
by Jane McGonigal
Jane McGonigal is probably the person most recognised as leading the current ‘gamification’ movement and in this book she outlines why she thinks that gaming can help in nearly every area of life.
The book is written very clearly and is peppered with examples that show how people are using game theory in a variety of different situations. Jane know that what she is saying will be alien to most people and confronts the issue that often people’s initial reaction to hearing facts about how many people play video games is ‘how can we stop them?’ Her view is that trying to stop people playing games is akin to trying to stop young people in the sixties listening to rock music. The fact that so many people are choosing to spend so much time in game worlds is a sign of something important, and to Jane it is a sign that reality is broken.
“The truth is this: in today’s society, computer and video games and fulfilling genuine human needs that the real world is currently unable to satisfy. Games are providing rewards that reality is not. They are teaching and inspiring and engaging us in ways that reality is not. They are bringing us together in ways that reality is not.”
The insights from this book are not technological but much more based in psychology; how can we change the way we approach problems and overcome this block that games are only for recreation and instead try to create a better society through games.
I have also included a video from Jane talking about how you can be more productive through using game techniques here …
Review by PM Davies