EXPLORING THE HUMANITY IN GAMES
iThrive Games is committed to listening to, learning from, and amplifying diverse perspectives and experiences. Beyond Gameplay invites educators, mental health professionals, industry scholars, funders, and teens alike to explore the humanity in games and how game and experience design can help our individual and collective thriving. Listen to the episodes below and tweet your reactions at @iThriveGames on Twitter!
EPISODE 10: GAMES AND SPIRITUALITY
Nov 27, 2019 · 26 minutes
On this episode of Beyond Gameplay, we give new meaning to the term "God mode." Menachem Cohen is game designer, rabbi, and spiritual director researching the use and design of games for personal and spiritual growth and exploration. In this episode, we talk about his experience working with homeless LGBTQ+ youth in Chicago, designing games for spiritual growth, and everything in between.
EPISODE 9: HIGH SCHOOL eSPORTS PART II
Nov 22, 2019 · 37 minutes
In this episode, we speak with J Collins, a leader in the academic eSports space, about developing eSports programming at the high school where they teach as well as creating the model for programs nation-wide. In this episode, some of J's students and other high schoolers who competed in the Ohio eSports tournament in early 2019 talk about what eSports in school means to them, what they wish the wider world knew about their experience, and what their aspirations are as they prepare for the transition to post-high school life.
EPISODE 8: HIGH SCHOOL eSPORTS
Nov 13, 2019 · 33 minutes
eSports is a booming market that has made its way into academics. Some colleges even offer full-ride scholarships to top eSports competitors, just like they would to traditional student athletes. High schools around the country are developing eSports curriculum, clubs, and programming to meet the needs and interests of students. In this interview, we speak with J Collins, a leader in the academic eSports space, about what eSports are doing for students and what the future of digital athletics looks like in high schools.
EPISODE 7: CRITICAL CORE
Aug 29, 2019 · 40 minutes
Tabletop gaming brings people together and can support personal journeys of growth and discovery. In this episode, we speak with Adam Johns and Adam Davis, also known in the mental health and game space simply as "The Adams," about their journey creating Game to Grow - a non-profit dedicated to using games of all kinds for therapeutic, educational, and community growth.
EPISODE 6: ROOM AT THE TABLE
Aug 22, 2019 · 36 minutes
Unlike digital games that are constrained by code, tabletop games are only limited by the imagination of the players and the Dungeon Master (DM). Tabletop role-playing games (TTRPGs) bring us together in the same space but there is infinite room at the table. In this episode, we talk with writer and editor Leslie Light about her article "Why I Didn't Play Dungeons and Dragons, and Why I Started" which examines her experience with D&D over the last 20 years.
EPISODE 5: ROLL FOR THERAPY
Aug 14, 2019 · 42 minutes
We're rolling for wisdom and digging into tabletop RPGs as a therapeutic tool to meet teens where they are. In this episode, Megan Connell, PsyD, a self-described therapeutic dungeon master, shares how she uses D&D and other tabletop games to help teens.
EPISODE 4: DESIGNING EMPATHIC EXPERIENCES
Jun 10, 2019 · 34 minutes
Is empathic design something only for indies or is there room for empathy in the AAA game space? In this episode, Osama Dorias, Senior Game Designer at Warner Brothers Montreal, shares his experience as an industry veteran and how empathy has played an important role in his career.
EPISODE 3: THE LIMITS OF EMPATHY
May 30, 2019 · 42 minutes
In this episode, we talk with Dr. Peter McDonald, an assistant professor of game design at Depaul University, about his research on the ways players make sense of and interpret games.
EPISODE 2: DIGGING DEEP INTO EMPATHY GAMES
May 14, 2019 · 35 minutes
Is there something inherent in games that makes them uniquely equipped to promote or evoke empathy? In this episode, leap head-first into the research around empathy games in search of the secret sauce of what - and how - games press The Feels button. Helping us on this quest is Dr. Karen Schrier, an associate professor and director of the games and emerging media program at Marist college.
EPISODE 1: EMPATHY 101
May 13, 2019 · 17 minutes
Empathy is a buzzword in the games industry, but what does it actually mean? In this episode, we dive into this question with guest and empathy expert Gabrielle Schlichtmann, Ed.D., Executive Director and Chief Scientist of EdTogether and lecturer at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.