Urgent Evoke

A crash course in changing the world.

Having only read a tiny fraction of the posts on Evoke it is hard to make a judgement about the overall success of this initiative, but my personal experience with Evoke has been very enlightening. The structure of the game, with objectives sorted into "Learn, Act, and Imagine" categories is brilliant. The site successfully gave me the nudges I needed to do learn, do, and imagine things that I would not have learned, done, and imagined otherwise. Evoke successfully challenges agents to see how far they can go and explore possibilities that were previously unimaginable.

Needless to say, I think the core components of Evoke (its mission framework, social features, and point system) should remain pretty much intact in season 2. However, there is always room for improvement. One feature that I would like to see in the future is a rating system for individual posts. I'm sure I'm not the only Evoke agent who was hard pressed to find time to peruse many of the other agents' posts. It would be nice if there were some way to sort through the posts to see which posts were rated highest by other agents. This way the best posts, and not just the most prolific posters, would get more attention.

The creators of Evoke also did a tremendous job picking topics to cover in the misions and objectives. Two options for next season might be to (1) pick another area of the world to focus on and maintain the wide variety of missions that are addressed or (2) focus on one global problem for the entire season. If another area of the world is chosen some regions to consider might be Southeast Asia, Latin America, or the Middle East. If Evoke were to focus on a single issue for the entire season some possibilities are the environment/sustainability, global health, economics/poverty, or urban problems (e.g. crime, substandard housing, etc.). This last issue, urban problems, might allow for some interesting new game-play features. This fall IBM is going to launch a new video game called CityOne (http://bit.ly/8YdTR3) that allows users to explore solutions to real urban problems. I don't know if this game will have any collaborative/social features or if it will be a single player experience, but if Evoke were to develop a game such as this that would also allow for ingame collaboration it might make the Evoke experience even more engaging. I'm definately going to be looking at CityOne to see what I can learn from it as I fine-tune the ReBuffalo.org concept (http://bit.ly/bc5EYh)

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