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Collaborative Play Against Global Warming (An Educational Board Game) - THATCamp Games 2013
  • Collaborative Play Against Global Warming (An Educational Board Game)


    Fig. Prototype of a Board Game

    I have completed the board game that was conceived during “THATCamps Game (TCG2013) organized at Case Western Reserve University. It is a playable game but still your feedback is helpful – play, have fun, and be aware!

    Title: Collaborative Play Against Global Warming (An Educational Board Game)


    Educational Objective: To collaborate for achieving a common goal of keeping the world sustainable for the future generation

    Central Mechanics: To keep on moving (progress) to achieve the individual goal while considering both individual and collaborative role for long term sustainability.

    Theme and Concept: It is a board game that instigates global warming awareness while having fun playing.


    Player Roles

    The four roles – Government, Factory, School, and Resident,  try to represent the whole society.

    Government: The government is a responsible entity trying to participate and implement recycling programs for the sustainability with incentives.

    Factory: The factory is motivated by profits without worrying about the plumes of green gasses from the factory. It can be geared towards recycling through awareness, incentives, and regulations.

    School: The institute can instill awareness in the students, playing an important role in this procedure

    Resident: The small scale awareness among residents can have huge overall impact in the society.


    1. Dice (total = 1)

    2. Game pieces for each role. More than one player can play any role. For the instance of five players, 5 pieces per role amounts to 25 pieces.
    3. A board with 52 squares on the edge (4 sides * 13 squares/side) with images of each role (Government, Factory, School, and Resident) printed at four corners of the board. The 12-square detour paths are carved from the middle (7th) square ending at 8th square at two opposite sides of the board. The 3rd and the 10th square of two opposite sides will have decision squares (with imprinted question marks) whereas the other two sides will have hazard squares (with imprinted bumps) – obstacles in player’s decision. Also, there are two veto squares (with imprinted Ace Card) that can interfere with any other player. The board also consist of two garbage squares (with imprinted trash cans).

    4. The central garbage bin with a capacity of 150 beads. This acts as a garbage repository or recycling site providing beads available throughout the play.

    • Distributes beads to the players and the central recycle bin as garbage to recycle
    • Gets beads from players representing recycling process.
    1. A central recycle bin with the capacity of 50 beads; should overflow with the 51st bead.

    2. An individual garbage bin with capacity of 20 beads for each player; should overflow with the 21st bead

    3. Though it can be played with any number of players, let’s decide 5 players as the number in this example. So, 5*20 + 50 = 150 beads

    4. One central temperature scale and one individual temperature scale for each player with a sliders that can select three regions – blue (normal), yellow (warning), and the red (indicating global warming)

    5. Badges (total = 40) : 10 green government badges, 10 black badges for factory; 10 Blue badges for school; and 10 brown badges for resident with roles imprinted in them.

    6. Blacklist cards (total = 40) with a single punched hole – 10 per role with the same color coding as in 5.

    7. Round Trackers for each player which track the number of times players come to the starting point (their respective home). It should be able to measure up to 20 rounds.

    8. Decision cards (total=8), 4 with printed options for each role (Government, Factory, School, and Resident) and 4 blank ones to allow players to customize.

    Winning Combinations

    Collaborative Win: This happens with an excellent collaborative effort from all the role players – Government, Factory, School, and Resident i.e. there is NOT a single bead in the central recycle bin; everything has been recycled.

    Individual Win:

    There are few ways a player can win

    1. If the player is the first to make complete 5 rounds (can be increased/reduced according to the time of play).

    2. If the player emptied all his beads from his individual garbage bin.

    3. If the player get enough badges while playing different roles.

    4. If everyone else suffers a loss.

    Losing Combinations

    Collaborative loss: If there is an overflow in the central recycle bin.

    Individual loss:

    1. If there is an overflow in his/her personal recycle bin.

    2. If the player is blacklisted being slapped by certain number of blacklist cards.

    3. If everyone else wins.


    The purpose of the game is to recycle the individual garbage bin and the central recycle bin by dumping beads to the repository/recycle site, central garbage bin, while progressing towards achieving goal as quickly as possible.

    1. Each player obtain the role (Government, Factory, School or Resident) by rolling the dice in the order of Government, Factory, School, and Resident. Initial rolling of the dice also takes the same order – Government First, Factory second, and so on. If more than 4 players, there can be duplicate roles and the dice can be rolled again for the combination.
    2. Each player can proceed his/her game piece from their respective home (corner square) ONLY after rolling either 6 or 1.
    3. Players have to take a detour if their game pieces happen to be in the detour square – an arrow directing them to the detour path of 12-square.
    4. While in each decision square (question marks), the player has to make one of the choices provided in his/her respective decision card. Different roles have their own decision cards as described below:
    • Government Decision Card has important role in recycling. Select one from the following options.
    1. Roll the dice once. Get one Government blacklist card. The player loses by acquiring 2 of them.
    2. Recycle 2 beads from the central recycle bin i.e. acquire 2 beads from central recycle bin (in the individual garbage bin) and get a Green badge. Acquiring 5 of them will make a distinguished winner.
    3. Recycle one bead from individual garbage bin i.e. transfer it to the central garbage bin
    • Factory Decision Card should discourage the factory to pollute the environment. Select one of the options in the decision card.
    1. Roll the dice twice. Get a factory blacklist card. The player loses by acquiring 3 of them.

    2. Recycle 2 beads from the central recycle bin by acquiring them (in the individual garbage bin) and get a black badge. Acquiring 4 of them will make a distinguished winner.

    3. Recycle one bead from the individual garbage bin i.e. transfer it to the central garbage bin

    • School Decision Card should campaign for Global Warming awareness. Select one of the options in the decision card:
    1. Roll the dice twice and get a school blacklist card. The player loses by acquiring 4 of them.

    2. Recycle a bead from the central recycle bin by acquiring it (in the individual garbage bin) and get a blue badge. Acquiring 3 of them will make a distinguished winner

    3. Recycle one bead from the individual garbage bin i.e. transfer it to the central garbage bin.

    • Resident Decision Card can make a difference. So, the decision card contains the following choices:
    1. Roll the dice twice and get a resident blacklist. The player loses by acquiring 5 of them.

    2. Recycle a bead from the central recycle bin by acquiring it (in the individual garbage bin). Get a brown badge. Acquiring 2 of them will make a distinguished winner

    3. Recycle one bead from the individual garbage bin i.e. transfer it to the central garbage bin.

    5. The Hazard squares (Bumps) force a player to pick up one bead from the central garbage bin to his/her individual recycle bin.

    6. A player can use veto against any player (esp. not participating in recycling or one in the verge of winning) after rolling a dice that lands him/her in the veto square. He/she can compel any one of the other players to get a bead from the central garbage bin.
    7. A player can return a badge that he/she won as an exchange for an extra roll of a dice so as to advance quicker.
    8. After the dice roll, if any player’s game piece happens to be at the same location (square) where the another player currently in, the later player can enjoin two options:

    1. Can ask the former player to get one bead from the central garbage bin to his/her individual garbage bin or

    2. Can ask him/her to go to his/her respective home. This player now can proceed only after rolling 1 or 6 while at home. The incomplete round does not increment the Round tracker.

    9. Players are not allowed to count their beads; by guessing the amount, they can indicate their status- blue, yellow or red zone in their individual thermometer

    10. If the player rolls 6, he/she is allowed to roll the dice again and his/her scores are cumulative. For an instance, if the player rolls six and then 5, his/her game piece can advance to 6 + 5 = 11 (squares). After rolling six twice, the player can roll the dice one more time. Getting three consecutive 6 is considered cheating and the player is penalized with no advancement at all; just stays at the same location and wait for the next turn. If the player gets the number other than six, total is cumulative.

    11. If the player lands at his/her respective home, his role will be changed to the next successive one i.e. becomes Factory if he/she had previously been playing Government role or School if previously had been Factory and son on. The player assuming a new role starts from the respective (new) home.

    12. If the player lands at Garbage squares, the central recycle bin receives two beads from the Central Garbage bin.

    13. In the final round of the play (5th round), the number rolled in the dice should be exact to reach the respective home. The player has to keep on rolling the dice at their turn to be at home and be the winner. Consider a scenario where the Government has 2 more to go to reach the square for Government Home but if he/she rolls 5, then it will remain at the same place. Rolling one will advance to one more square while rolling 2 award him/her a win.

    Game Setup:

    1. Place a central recycle bin and one thermometer in the middle of the board at the proper locations. Fill the bin with 25 beads and set the thermometer to yellow zone.
    2. Each player gets one individual recycle bin, one thermometer, and a Round Tracker. Get 10 beads from the central garbage bin and place them in the individual recycle bin. Set the thermometer to yellow zone, and round tracker to zero.
    3. Place the central garbage bin with the remaining beads outside the board at a convenient location accessible to all players.
    4. Place 4 decision cards in the middle for everyone to look at their respective options while playing different roles.
    5. Decide the role and the position of the players by rolling the dice in the descending order. For an example, if the 5 players get 6, 1, 5, 2, and 3, then,
    • 6 – Government; starts first

    • 5 – Factory; starts second

    • 3 – School; start 3rd

    • 2 – Resident; start 4th

    • 1 – Government; start 5th

    • The tie is broken by re-rolling the dice. If there are more than 5 players, roll the dice twice and decide according to the outcomes i.e. 66 – Government; starts first and so on.

    Start to play:

    1. The government starts the play.

    2. Each player has to get either 6 or 1 to start from home. Else he/she remains at home

    3. After getting 6 or 1, according to the number the players roll, they will proceed. For example, if a player rolls 5, then his/her game piece will be in the 5th square.

    4. A player has to follow respective instructions/rules when at different squares: decision squares, hazard square, homes, detour squares, garbage squares, and veto square.


  1. Sanjaya Gajurel says:

    Your feedback is important to improve upon this game!

  2. Emily Boss says:

    Hi Sanjaya!

    Good job finishing this up. A few questions:

    Does placing a bead in the Central Garbage Bin take it out of play, so it has been finally recycled? It looks like the progression for garbage is either to be taken from the central recycling bin and then placed in the central garbage bin (and so be recycled) or just taken from an individual bin and recycled via the central garbage bin. Is that right? Having the final destination be called “central garbage” did make me wonder if it was being recycled or thrown away. 🙂

    I love the individual thermometers. Gives everyone a way to gauge their effect on the environment.

    Are any of the roles intended to take a stance for or against recycling? Or is that based on individual choice with respect to the tradeoffs between individual and group win conditions?

    Is there a limit on vetos?

    When you land on your home space and move to another role, do you move your game piece to that next home square?

    If you start out as the Resident and acquire 3 blacklist badges, and then move on to be the Government. Does that mean you lose immediately since you have more than the 2 blacklist badges that make the Government player lose?

    Another individual win condition might be if everyone else suffers individual loss.

    Good luck with further development!!!

    • Sanjaya Gajurel says:

      Hi Emily,

      Thank you for your response and important feedback. I have updated the Game so as to clarify the ambiguity. I have also added your win condition and based on it, derived the loss condition.

      Please let me know.



  3. Sanjaya Gajurel says:

    The image for the prototype has been attached.

  4. Sanjaya Gajurel says:

    Excerpts from the article by Anastasia Salter: http://chronicle.com/blogs/profhacker/making-board-games-in-the-classroom/48983

    “You can see one of the rulesets for a game created during the workshop and refined by Sanjaya Gajurel: “Collaborative Play Against Global Warming.””


  1. Making Board Games in the Classroom - ProfHacker - The Chronicle of Higher Education

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