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Jane McGonigal

Reality is broken

You may think of playing games - in particular computer games - as a bit of entertainment at best, and at worst an addictive time waster. Jane McGonigal doesn't agree. In Reality is broken: why games make us better and how they can change the world she argues that games can help with real world problems and improve our day-to-day living

The book starts with a history of gaming, and moves on to the benefits games can bring, such as encouraging players to exercise and to get out and meet people. 'Day in the Cloud' aims to make air travel enjoyable rather than an ordeal, while 'Ghosts of a Chance' helps people to get more out of their visit to a museum. The last part of the book looks at games which help people to understand the world's problems and to contribute towards a solution. Throughout the book there are 'Fixes' -ways in which games can improve on reality.

I have to say that the book wasn't quite what I expected. I felt that McGonigal overstates the benefits of games - sometimes it is just a time waster. I was looking for ways in which work and other activities can be made easier by using gaming technology, so I would have liked a whole chapter on the Quest to Learn school in New York rather than just a few pages. I felt that the novelty of games like Chore wars - which encourages people to do household chores - would soon wear off. But I thought that the 'world changing' games were interesting, even if they're still in their early stages. Despite my reservations, in the end I felt that the book has enough useful ideas on how games can improve reality to make it worth reading.

Amazon.com info
Paperback 400 pages  
ISBN: 0224089250
Salesrank: 3500815
Weight:0.93 lbs
Published: 2011 Jonathan Cape
Marketplace:New from $91.99:Used from $3.28
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Amazon.co.uk info
Paperback 400 pages  
ISBN: 0224089250
Salesrank: 588407
Weight:0.93 lbs
Published: 2011 Jonathan Cape
Marketplace:New from £12.99:Used from £0.57
Buy from Amazon.co.uk
Amazon.ca info
Paperback 400 pages  
ISBN: 0224089250
Salesrank: 1358513
Weight:0.93 lbs
Published: 2011 Jonathan Cape
Marketplace:New from CDN$ 50.03:Used from CDN$ 15.94
Buy from Amazon.ca





Product Description
More than 31 million people in the UK are gamers. The average young person in the UK will spend 10,000 hours gaming by the age of twenty-one. What's causing this mass exodus? According to world-renowned game designer Jane McGonigal the answer is simple: videogames are fulfilling genuine human needs. Drawing on positive psychology, cognitive science and sociology, "Reality is Broken" shows how game designers have hit on core truths about what makes us happy, and utilized these discoveries to astonishing effect in virtual environments. But why, McGonigal asks, should we use the power of games for escapist entertainment alone? In this groundbreaking exploration of the power and future of gaming, she reveals how gamers have become expert problem solvers and collaborators, and shows how we can use the lessons of game design to socially positive ends, be it in our own lives, our communities or our businesses. Written for gamers and non-gamers alike, "Reality is Broken" sends a clear and provocative message: the future will belong to those who can understand, design and play games.