Can problems like poverty and climate change by fixed through games? Visionary game designer Jane McGonigal thinks it can. With more than 174 million gamers in the United States, McGonigal explores how we can save the world through the power of gaming. McGonigal is helping pioneer the fasting-growing genre of games that turns gameplay to achieve socially positive outcomes.
Jane McGonigal, PhD is a world-renowned designer of alternate reality games — or, games that are designed to improve real lives and solve real problems. She believes game designers are on a humanitarian mission — and her #1 goal in life is to see a game developer win a Nobel Peace Prize. She is the New York Times bestselling author of Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World (Penguin Press, 2011) — and is the inventor and co-founder of SuperBetter, a game that has helped nearly half a million players tackle real-life health challenges such as depression, anxiety, chronic pain, and traumatic brain injury.
Jane McGonigal discusses the impact of gaming on the psychological health of gamers. McGonigal explains that when players spend more than 28 hours a week gaming, it can have a negative impact. She points to social and physical gaming as healthier alternatives, arguing these types of games facilitate a connection between gamers and real life friends and family.
Game designer and author Jane McGonigal recounts how the computer game Chore Wars pitted her and her husband against one another to see who could perform more household chores. "We wound up doing some funny things, like hiding the toilet brush so the other person couldn't do it," she says.