Play and Possibility: Highlights from Games for Change (#G4C2020)

At this year’s Games for Change Festival, we had the pleasure of interacting with #game lovers across the globe and sharing our experiences designing educational games for teens. Here are some highlights from #G4C2020.

By iThrive Games
July 23, 2020

It was a pleasure to be one of the over 200 speakers and 6800 attendees at the 2020 Games for Change Festival. From interacting with fellow game lovers at the marketplace to tuning into the amazing conference speakers, our staff left the conference feeling inspired.

Thank you to all who attended the talk by our Executive Director, Dr. Susan Rivers. She spoke about addressing the needs of distance learning and attending to the opportunities and challenges of designing educational games for new learning environments. Since COVID-19 has and will continue to present barriers to traditional learning, organizations, and people who work with youth need new kinds of resources that can address the challenges of distance learning and create new possibilities. Staying agile in meeting the needs of youth and those who work with them is now more important than ever, as the education landscape changes and the pandemic continues. And so is listening deeply to the needs of young people today, as their needs and requests change. 

 If you missed it, Susan shared how iThrive addressed these challenges. You can watch her presentation below.


Our staff loved the presentation by the folks from Gigantic Mechanic, fellow civics-based role-playing creators. It was refreshing to see other role-playing simulations designed to support students in their understanding of civics.

Some of our staff's favorites were Maria Burns Ortiz's session on game design with youth, our friend Matt Farber's session on the curriculum he collaborated on for the game Bury Me, My Love, and Colleen Macklin's session "Play for Change: Ten Games to Play Right Now" was chock full of impactful game recommendations. 

It was wonderful to be in community virtually, sharing and being enlivened by the power of games.  

"I appreciate the community's intent to support youth positive development with games and to meet the moment," said Jane Lee, Senior Director of Operations & Mental Health.