Storm Eunice is sweeping across the UK as I type. Here's hoping everyone is taking sensible actions to keep themselves and others safe.
For anyone unexpectedly at a loose end indoors, however, while the winds blow around outside, here's something you might consider doing - downloading and trying out a new board game I've designed. It's called the Global Wellbeing Game.
I've seen plenty of comments on social media in recent years that, often, being sustainable doesn't seem as much fun as the alternatives. In response, I've designed a game that I hope will be a fun way of exploring some real-world choices on actions to make the world a more sustainable place for everyone to thrive.
To be honest, it's quite loosely framed around that narrative, in order to simplify and make the game play easily accessible as well as fun, while at the same time retaining the flexibility for players to be either competitive and/or cooperative in their tactics. Co-opetition is not a necessity in this game, but it is a possibility.
Players add pieces in the hexagonal cells on the game board shown above, and move them around, representing their philanthropic investments in wellbeing projects which tackle issues around climate change, inequalities and so on. The bigger the total of all players' investments, the bigger the ultimate wellbeing impact for all players and for the world. The winning player is the one who makes the biggest positive wellbeing impact.
The game draws inspiration from games such as Go, Checkers/Draughts and Risk. With about 300 playing cells to choose from, the game can be played strategically, tactically or almost entirely without interaction with other players, as the game board has plenty of room for all players to be active without coming into contact with each other, if they so wish.
There’s a little more to it than that.
For the “crafty” people among you, the files in the section below can be downloaded, including game play instructions and templates for other materials which can be printed, stuck onto card with paper glue, and cut out to provide (nearly) all you need to play the game yourself. The only things you need to source or have available are the dice and a flat surface of at least 66cm x 44cm (eg a table top) to play the game on.
I’d very much appreciate any feedback about this game and any suggestions for improvements, as it is just a prototype.
My thanks go to the educational site Twinkl, from which I obtained the underlying 3 x 3 world map on which the hexagonal grid and game board have been superimposed. That was a “Mercator” map. If anyone knows of a free to use “Goode / Homolocine Projection” map of the world that could be used in the same way, I’d appreciate you letting me know, for consideration in any later prototypes or versions of the game.
Downloadable game materials
The game instruction leaflet (pdf):
The game materials (except dice) – (pdf):
Game turn counter table (jpg):
The Planetary CFO - working towards a sustainable World Balance Sheet.