Imagine you are from a small village in a developing country, perhaps a farmer, a teacher, or a market owner. In recent years, your community has been facing very difficult times. Unemployment is very high, people are emigrating, and the rate of child mortality has drastically increased due to lake contamination.
One day, an investor from a developed country arrives to your village with a proposition to buy a piece of land and build a hotel. At this moment, it is up to you and your community to discuss, compromise, and decide on the future well-being of all. What decisions will you make, and how will these decisions affect both your individual prosperity and the development of your village?
HOW TO PLAY
Players assume the role of a character and have to make decisions throughout the game aimed at improving the village from its critical state. All the decisions they make are tracked online through well-being indicators so that they see the immediate impact of their individual choices on unemployment, cost of living, life expectancy, environment and food sovereignty.
The game is organized into teams of eight. Within three, two-hour sessions, players will propose, discuss and negotiate solutions to an array of challenges.
While teams of eight compete against each other to create the most sustainable and prosperous village, each player also aims to score the highest number of individual points. Lastly, at the end of the game, teams will have the opportunity to view how their final well-being indicators compare to those of other teams worldwide in the online ranking, ultimately determining their level of success.
Through both in-person and online components, SmileUrbo creates healthy and thought-provoking debates and encourages empathy throughout the group as it opens minds to new perspectives and solutions. The game emphasizes the importance of each individual's contribution within a group setting, and in valuing and respecting one another.
Although players are asked to think about their individual prosperity, their primary goal is to succeed as a team. Through hands-on, immersive learning, the game encourages an open-minded approach to problem solving, and to working with others of different backgrounds and skill levels to reach a common goal. It develops players abilities to discuss and communicate ideas well, make group decisions, think innovatively, and build consensus.
The game is designed as a workshop and team-building tool for businesses and as an awareness-building tool for education institutions and nonprofits.
Created by a non-profit organization Smilemundo in collaboration with Fundacio Iwith.org, Fundacja Innowatorium, Open University of Catalonia, University of Girona, gaming experts, talented graphic designers, writers and programmers. Co- financed by Erasmus+ and Diputacio de Barcelona.
All the profits from commercial uses of the game go back directly to the society through the non-profit projects of Smilemundo.
Interested in playing SmileUrbo in your institution? To get more information and a login for the game contact us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It is a new and exciting experience that allows you to observe how small decisions affect the overall fate of a whole community (Roberto)
This project truly touched my heart! I believe this is an area that is needed across the globe! (Darcy)
I think it is great to have a game that can make a difference! (Karine)