About Reality is Broken
• Hardcover: 400 pages
• Publisher: The Penguin Press (January 20, 2011)
Visionary game designer Jane McGonigal reveals how we can harness the power of games to solve real-world problems and boost global happiness.
More than 174 million Americans are gamers, and the average young person in the United States will spend ten thousand hours gaming by the age of twenty-one. According to world-renowned game designer Jane McGonigal, the reason for this mass exodus to virtual worlds is that videogames are increasingly fulfilling genuine human needs. In this groundbreaking exploration of the power and future of gaming, McGonigal reveals how we can use the lessons of game design to fix what is wrong with the real world.
Drawing on positive psychology, cognitive science, and sociology, Reality Is Broken uncovers how game designers have hit on core truths about what makes us happy and utilized these discoveriesto astonishing effect in virtual environments. Videogames consistently provide the exhilarating rewards, stimulating challenges, and epic victories that are so often lacking in the real world. But why, McGonigal asks, should we use the power of games for escapist entertainment alone? Her research suggests that gamers are expert problem solvers and collaborators because they regularly cooperate with other players to overcome daunting virtual challenges, and she helped pioneer a fast-growing genre of games that aims to turn gameplay to socially positive ends.
In Reality Is Broken, she reveals how these new alternate reality games are already improving the quality of our daily lives, fighting social problems such as depression and obesity, and addressing vital twenty-first-century challenges-and she forecasts the thrilling possibilities that lie ahead. She introduces us to games like World Without Oil, a simulation designed to brainstorm-and therefore avert- the challenges of a worldwide oil shortage, and Evoke, a game commissioned by the World Bank Institute that sends players on missions to address issues from poverty to climate change.
McGonigal persuasively argues that those who continue to dismiss games will be at a major disadvantage in the coming years. Gamers, on the other hand, will be able to leverage the collaborative and motivational power of games in their own lives, communities, and businesses. Written for gamers and nongamers alike, Reality Is Broken shows us that the future will belong to those who can understand, design, and play games.
World-renowned game designer and futurist Jane McGonigal, PhD. takes play seriously. McGonigal is the Director of Game Research and Development at the Institute for the Future in Palo Alto, California, where she earned Harvard Business Review honors for “Top 20 Breakthrough Ideas of 2008” for her work on the future of games. Her work has been featured in The Economist, Wired, and The New York Times; and on MTV, CNN, BBC, and NPR. In 2009, BusinessWeek called her one of the 10 most important innovators to watch, and Fast Company hailed her as one of the 100 most creative people in business. She has given keynote addresses at TED, South by Southwest Interactive, the Game Developers Conference, ETech, and the Web 2.0 Summit, and has been a featured speaker at The New Yorker Conference. Born in Philadelphia in 1977 and raised in New York, Jane now lives in San Francisco with her husband.
Learn more about Jane at her website, www.realityisbroken.com.
Jane McGonigal’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS
Tuesday, January 18th: GeekMom
Wednesday, January 19th: Boarding in My Forties
Thursday, January 20th: Gaming Angels – reschedule
Friday, January 21st: Shezcrafti
Tuesday, January 25th: Nerds in Babeland
Wednesday, January 26th: Books on the Brain
Thursday, January 27th: Belle Renee
Tuesday, February 1st: In the Next Room
Wednesday, February 2nd: Total Fan Girl
Wednesday, February 2nd: Juggling Life
Friday, February 4th: GeekDad
Monday, February 7th: Po(sey) Sessions
Monday, February 7th: Mind of Mr. X
Wednesday, February 9th: Book Dads