A Crash Course in Changemaking Games

GWP1A three hour intensive for up to 50 people that introduces participants to the fundamentals of games for change through case studies and hands on games and exercises. Participants will by breaking into small groups to play a physical game together called Gargoyles, and in the process they will change some of the rules and then talk about how those rules changed the game. We’ll then have a group discussion about what playing and changing the game was like, which is the first step of the game design process. Next, I will start to connect what participants learnt playing, changing and discussing Gargoyles with case studies of effective uses of games for change as well as some key best practices. The workshop culminates with participants again breaking into teams to play a game called Metagame, which is a game of creating games where participants will collaboratively create a simple game together, using the game structure as a way to guide the process.


Workshop features

  • 3 hours, up to 50 people
  • Accessible yet powerful introduction to change-focused games for participants of all backgrounds
  • No coding or knowledge of games required
  • Hands on, direct learning through example


Sample schedule

9:00-9:45 Play Gargoyles – a physical game that explores personal space
9:45-10:00 Gargoyles debrief – unpacking the experience and starting to think like game designers
10:00-10:30 Case studies and best practices in changemaking games (presentation)
10:30-11:45 Play Metagame – the game of making games
11:45-12:00 Debrief and wrap



  • 2 hour preparation session with 8-10 volunteers will be required prior to the workshop day
  • An open space (preferably outdoors) that would accommodate 50 people playing Gargoyles
  • 10 tables, each with enough room for 5 people to work together
  • Projector for presentations
  • All other workshop materials provided
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