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In This Issue
Save 300! IG in Chicago
IG at Work: PKG Thinks Back from the Future
From the Blog
iPad Contest & Free Download
IG in Cyberspace
We're Growing Again!
200+ IG Facilitators!
Meet the Team
Quick Links
Play a Game!
Join Our Mailing List
Save on IG Training in Chicago
IG Book
Many of you have asked when we were bringing Innovation Games back to the Midwest. Well, ask no further. CEO and founder Luke Hohmann & the Oobeya Group's Lowell Lindstromwill be teaching a two-day Innovation Games course on Feb. 21-22 in Chicago, IL. 

The class is interactive, case study-based, and promises to make you ready to put Innovation Games to work the moment you step back in the office. Luke & Lowell will cover in-person & online games -- including our new iPad game Knowsy -- facilitation and presentation skills and much more.

Click here to register and save $300!
Innovation Games Class: Seattle

Join Luke Hohmann for an Innovation Games for Customer Understanding course at SolutionsIQ in Seattle, WA on January 19-20. 

Creativity Cruise

Join Eileen Doyle et. al. on Feb. 7-11, 2010 for a Creativity Cruise in the Caribbean.

Play4Agile Unconference

Several IG Trained facilitators and other influential members of the Agile community have joined forces to bring an unconference on agile games to Rückersbach, Germany on February 18-21, 2011. For more information and to register, click here.

IG Master Class for Consultants

Join Luke Hohmann  for a 2-day Innovation Games course designed especially for consultants. The March 17-18 class covers both in-person and online games, along with information on structuring engagements, marketing and selling the games and more. For more information and to register, click here.

IG Class Comes to Boston

Join Luke Hohmann  for a 2-day Innovation Games for Customer Understanding Course in Boston, MA, on April 12-13, 2010. This two-day interactive class covers both in-person and online games--including our new iPad game Knowsy--along with facilitation and presentation skills. For more information and to register, click here.

Agile Games 2011

Luke Hohmann is keynoting the 2nd annual Agile Games Conference, Agile Games 2011, in Boston on April 14.  For more information and to join their mailing list to stay informed, click here.

Bay Area IG Class

Join Luke Hohmann  for a 2-day Innovation Games for Customer Understanding Course in Mountain View, CA, on May 19-20, 2010. This two-day interactive class covers both in-person and online games--including our new iPad game Knowsy--along with facilitation and presentation skills. For more information and to register, click here.


Welcome to latest issue of Your Next Move!, our monthly newsletter covering the latest news, events and announcements from the Innovation Games® community.
Innovation Games at Work
PKG Thinks Back from the Future

A few months ago, Luke met PKG Consulting's Robert DeNola on a flight back to the Bay Area. Long story short, Luke introduced Robert to Innovation Games, and Robert put the games to work in short order. We recently had a chance to ask Robert about his experience using Innovation Games, in particular his use of Remember the Future on a client Remember the Futureengagement.

Tell us about your experience with Innovation Games.
At PKG, we recently faced an uncommon amount of resistance when attempting to implement a technology that could dramatically enable important strategic objectives for our major client. We were concerned with avoiding a logjam, but when Luke first mentioned Remember the Future to me, I immediately sensed its potential. In fact, Remember the Future is the most game-changing technique I've ever used.

How did you put Remember the Future to work?
We used the game near the beginning of a seven hour, 15 person meeting. I posted a 2 x 3 foot poster of the Remember the Future illustration, along with instructions to imagine that "today is the past" and that the "future is today". I asked the team members in the room to imagine that we were three years out and we had doubled our packaging sales. What were we glad we had done to accomplish this audacious goal? What difficult topics were we glad that we had worked through in light of the benefits we'd gained?

And what were the results?
The game was like a fast-acting virus, invading the ordinary thought processes of many in the room. With Remember the Future's implied "today is the past" fundamental truth, and the consequent "the future is today" corollary, every issue brought up could be framed in its perspective. This effect influenced not only the meeting participants, but also had a profound affect on my thinking. Suffice it to say that after this experience it will be impossible for any of the participants to think through process-change challenges without the "thinking back from the future" perspective.

Note: Robert's powerful experience is supported by emerging findings in neuroscience. Read later in this newsletter for an article by the Wall Street Journal on how our minds constantly seek to "Remember the Future".
From the Blog
Gamification: Badges & Points Miss the Point!
Luke Hohmann
Luke photo 

The "Gamification" movement continues to gain speed. And while I appreciate some of the careful thinking and discussions, the entire movement is at risk of getting it more wrong than right. Quite frankly, badges and points are, well, missing the point. Gamification should not be based on simplistic, Pavlovian responses to stimulus. Click on a button. Get points. Brush your teeth. Get points. No cavities? Wow a sticker. If that's the best that game designers can do, the world is going backward, not forward, and I don't want any part of the Gamification movement.

At The Innovation Games® Company, we think that serious games are more about actual problem solving, than racking up points and badges. To realize this, effective serious game designers need to create collaborative interaction models that naturally motivate high levels of engagement and participation. The key word is naturally. Not artificially induced, and at times, farcical behavior. In this post, I'll elaborate on these concepts and show how they have informed the design of two of our games: Buy a Feature and our recently released iPad game, Knowsy.

Click here to

iPad Contest & Free Download
Knowsy Knows You Love Angry Birds

Although we're a serious games company, we enjoy playing games for fun. We recently decided to marry our love of fun and serious games by creating a "Favorite iPad Games" contest in our iPad game Knowsy. Each member of our little Knowsy iPad Gamesteam submitted a few of their personal favorite games, ranging from Angry Birds and Trucks and Skulls to Doodle Blast! and Cut the Rope?

The contest starts today, Dec. 16th and features 16 of the top iPad games as chosen by our staff. We'll be tracking game play and revealing the results on December 22 -- and to encourage more people to play, we're offering Knowsy for free in the iTunes store through Dec. 21. The 16 games featured in the contest, include (in ABC order):

Angry Birds HD
Bit.Trip Beat HD
Civilization Revolution for iPad
Cut the Rope HD
Doodle Blast! HD
Flight Control HD
Fruit Ninja HD
Geometry Wars: Touch
Millionaire City HD
Monster Ball HD
Osmos HD
Pinball HD
Plants vs. Zombies HD
Real Racing HD
Scrabble for iPad
Trucks and Skulls HD

What's your favorite iPad Game? What are your friends favorites? Grab Knowsy and find out!
IG in Cyberspace
Neuroscience, Product Pricing and more

It's been a busy month for Innovation Games in cyberspace. We've selected a few of the more interesting posts here for your reading pleasure.

NEW: The Neuroscience of Remember the Future
Matt Ridley, who writes the "Mind and Matter" column for the Wall Street Journal, discusses the cognitive and neuroscience background of Remember the Future here. It appears that our mind spends a lot more time "remembering the future" as a key aspect of sense-making than originally discussed.

Building the First Iteration MVPPTPT
Mario López de Ávila Muńoz recently featured Innovation Games in his post on "Building the First Iteration MVP" on the blog Leantalk.com. According to Mario, he has had good success using a combination of Jim Highsmith's Product Box Design, Mike Cohn's Story-writing Workshop and our Prune the Product Tree. He then follows the exercises by asking his team to document all the assumptions they had made during the process about problem/solution and imagine how are they going to test them. The post generated a healthy amount of comments and debate. Check it out here.

On Pricing: Your Company Reputation Matters
Pragmatic Marketing's Steve Johnson published a thoughtful post on Dec. 7 about the secrets of product pricing -- and how it's really based on a company's reputation. He zeroed in on innovation -- have you created a new way to solve a problem, and expertise -- have you got a capability or experience that others don't. We're flattered that Innovation Games was mentioned as an example in the post, and encourage you to check out the post for the discussion Steve has launched.

Innovation Games Around the WorldInnovation Games in Russia Softline blog
Dimitry Layer of Softline DevBlog recently profiled his use of Innovation Games for research, focusing on Product Box, Prune the Product Tree, Spider Web and Speed Boat. The posting is in Russian, but there are some great pictures of the team playing Product Box. To check out the post, click here.

And in France, Claude Aubry has added Innovation Games to his Scrum training class, featuring such games as Remember the Future, a variant of Product Box, Prune the Product Tree and Speed Boat.

We're Growing Again!
Know a Great UX/UI Developer Who Wants to Change the World?

We're adding to our team and are looking for an experienced user interface/user experience developer who can help us change the world through serious games. We're not looking for any developer. We're looking for the rare combination of brilliant technical skills, acute design aesthetic, playful and yet passionate developer that cares as much about the craftsmanship of his/her internal solution as the colors of the buttons presented to the user.

The right person will get the chance to leverage cutting edge web technology and mobile devices to create new kinds of interaction models. If you've seen IGO or Knowsy, you have some idea of the type of work, but we have so much more planned. If you're interested in finding out more-and learning about what's it like to work with us, click here for the complete job description.

Community Update
Innovation Games® Trained Facilitators Top 200+ Worldwide

With our Innovation Games for Customer Understanding course in Reykjavik, Iceland this past November, we surpassed 200 Innovation Games® Trained Facilitators worldwide -- 211 trained facilitators, in fact, across Europe, Asia, North and Central America. Our community includes members of the agile community, market research experts, game developers and designers, management consultants and more. We cross almost every vertical, including finance, insurance, software, professional services, media.

It's heartening to see the community thrive -- especially now that we've expanded our qualification initiative to include the Innovation Games Qualified Instructor program, which certifies individuals to teach Innovation Games classes around the world. (Watch next month for a profile of our new iGQIs!)

If you're interested in becoming a trained facilitator or a qualified instructor, contact Tami Carter

Meet the Team
Community Director Tami Carter

This month Community Director Tami Carter is in the hot seat. She's the former general manager of a series of conferences

Tami Carter

for software developers and magazine editor who knows the power of Innovation Games having used the games to improve conference offerings and marketing efforts. She now runs The Innovation Games Company's training and community efforts.

What's your favorite Innovation Game®
It's a toss up between Buy a Feature and Knowsy. Both are really fun to play -- and great examples of how games can do "real work".

What makes you smile?

Getting to play games for a living! I love helping people plan and design innovation Games and facilitating them -- especially online games using our online game platform Innovation Games Online.

What is your favorite place in the world?
India. It's overwhelming and wonderful -- a complete and total assault to the senses and full of the most amazing sights and people.
If you could meet any famous historical person, who would it be?
Eudora Welty. I met her briefly when I was in the 10th grade and heard her read her short story "Why I Live at the PO", but I would love to have another chance to speak with her.

Who do you want to play Knowsy with?
I love playing Knowsy with my 5 year old. It's how I found out what she really wanted for Christmas.

Have any news about the Innovation Games® community?  Email us at info@innovationgames.com.


Can't wait for the next newsletter? Do you have to know what's new with Innovation Games®, right now? Find out what's happening with us at Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, our blog or at Games for Democracy.



Tami Carter
Director of Community and Training
The Innovation Games® Company
Free Download!
Are You Knowsy?
How well do you know your friends & family? How well do they know you? Play Knowsy for iPad and find out. Free this until Dec. 21 -- only in the App Store! Download now!
Offer Expires: Dec. 21, 2010