insights of a sustainable world

What Is 2030 SDGs Game ?

An invitation to explore the world and yourself

The 2030 SDGs Game is a multiplayer, in-person, card-based game that simulates taking the “real world” into the year 2030.

Designed in Japan in 2016, this experience has become a powerful and impactful social phenomenon in Japan, earning extensive media coverage and reaching over 100,000 participants.

2030 SDGs Game events are held in corporate, governmental, educational, and community settings.

Why Design It As A Simulation Game ?

The SDGs are ambitious and can seem overwhelming, simply due to their volume and scope. While dramatic in their potential impact on the world, approaching them can be daunting. A game approach has three powerful advantages:

  1. It gives people a direct experience of participating in co-creating a sustainable world (“I can do it”; “what I do makes a difference.”)
  2. It simplifies and makes accessible an extremely complex issue to a level that allows people to begin to understand, while stimulating our natural curiosity to learn more.
  3. It activates players’ natural instincts to set their aim toward a worthy goal, simultaneously building confidence and making it enjoyable, while inspiring and motivating players to take action in the real world.

How To Bring The Simulation Game ?

We are looking for venues and community leaders who are interested in hosting us. This game is a tremendous resource and catalyst for anyone who wants to inspire, motivate, and empower your community or organization to embrace a vision of a sustainable world. If you are interested in hosting the game, please contact us using the form below.

What Are People Saying About The Game?

In Japan
In Caribbean
In Benin (in French)

How To Play ?

The rules are simple: Players use money and time to achieve their goals by the end of the game.

What kind of goals are there?

One player might have the goal of Acquiring Wealth; for these players, money is the most important thing. For others, the most important thing might be to Enjoy Leisure, to have the freedom to relax or to spend time doing what they want. Others may want to end poverty, or to protect the environment. Just like in the real world, in this world there are diverse people with different values.

Let’s look at what kind of project cards we have.

Here is a project called Build Transportation Infrastructure.

To run this project, “What you need to spend” is 500 Money cards and 3 Time cards. If transportation infrastructure is built, the economy circulates more smoothly, and travel time is shortened. As a result of running this project, “What you get” is 1000 Money, 1 Time, a new Project, and a Principle Card.

Principles are the intangible things that are nevertheless very important: think of them as a sense of fulfillment, contribution, or value. These principle cards are important to players for whom principles are more important than money or time, and who collect them as their goal.

Another important point is that every participant uses the magnets on the whiteboard as in the photo below. These magnets show the present condition of your world: Blue represents the economy, while Green stands for the environment, and Yellow stands for society.

Testimonials

“What I actually like about this game is that it is really easy, straightforward, something light, but still deals with something really important. I liked the negotiation part, talking and touching on really important issues, again in a playful way. Definitely something that should be more and more replicated in so many other contexts. Also I heard that the game has been rolled out in school. I think of my daughter. She wants to work in the UN like me, but as a ballerina. It is although difficult for me to make her understand what I do, but a game like this helps raise the new generation in the better way for the best results.”

Letizia Montecalvoa / from UNFPA, UN funded program focusing on population, sex, reproductive health, maternal health

“The biggest discovery I had was one generosity can change a lot of people’s projects as well as behaviors. Similarly, well-being of all people can be influenced by one single person. During the game when this one girl gave me all her time and money because she already achieved her personal goals. That offsets a positive chain reaction where I could give money or time, or do generous type of trading so that other people could achieve their projects and their personal goals. At the very end that actually contributed to making them the overall result better.”

Miho Teramoto / a Colombia University student and an intern for the Japanese mission at the UN

“It was a really eye-opening experience and also was a lot of fun. But for me, the game helped me see the perspective of those who deal with different situations. In the game, my goal was about gaining time for myself, so I was trying to run around to grab as many projects as I possibly can. I wasn’t really aware of the world situation. This game experience was, for me, to get a perspective of those who might not be in a fortunate position to provide resources or time to the world situation. When I talk with anyone who may not have the resources to give, I now can possibly understand their perspective better.”

CJ / an intern at UN with the division for SDGs and natural resource branch

“It was a really eye-opening experience and also was a lot of fun. But for me, the game helped me see the perspective of those who deal with different situations. In the game, my goal was about gaining time for myself, so I was trying to run around to grab as many projects as I possibly can. I wasn’t really aware of the world situation. This game experience was, for me, to get a perspective of those who might not be in a fortunate position to provide resources or time to the world situation. When I talk with anyone who may not have the resources to give, I now can possibly understand their perspective better.”

CJ / an intern at UN with the division for SDGs and natural resource branch

“The biggest discovery I had was one generosity can change a lot of people’s projects as well as behaviors. Similarly, well-being of all people can be influenced by one single person. During the game when this one girl gave me all her time and money because she already achieved her personal goals. That offsets a positive chain reaction where I could give money or time, or do generous type of trading so that other people could achieve their projects and their personal goals. At the very end that actually contributed to making them the overall result better.”

Miho Teramoto / a Colombia University student and an intern for the Japanese mission at the UN

“What I actually like about this game is that it is really easy, straightforward, something light, but still deals with something really important. I liked the negotiation part, talking and touching on really important issues, again in a playful way. Definitely something that should be more and more replicated in so many other contexts. Also I heard that the game has been rolled out in school. I think of my daughter. She wants to work in the UN like me, but as a ballerina. It is although difficult for me to make her understand what I do, but a game like this helps raise the new generation in the better way for the best results.”

Letizia Montecalvoa / from UNFPA, UN funded program focusing on population, sex, reproductive health, maternal health

“The game was super interesting. It’s a fabulous tool to promote awareness of SDGs in 2030 Agenda focusing on inter-linkages between goals as well as the need not to only think about the each goal too much. The game makes you realize how your individual choices that you make in your private life everyday influence the state of the world…. It often seems a little bit impossible to keep that in mind because the world is so big and I am so small as one person. But there is this interconnection that we always have to keep in mind.”

Anita Stockhausa / the European Union’s delegation to the UN dealing with SDGs and 2030 agenda working on development issues

“It was a very fascinating game. It was a simulated world, however, the game allowed me to see how the three different areas in the SDGs goals respond when people collaborate, share and work towards common goals. The lesson I learned from the game is that to deal with the moral and ethical question in software development we could use a game like this. Through this game, both young people and others who are successful in life are able to feel that they can still achieve their goal while working towards improving society and working towards climate change.”

Sander Johnson / from software development firm

“I discovered a lot during this game. I discover how a game could bring very serious subjects that are based on a real experience. The game experience really opened up my mind, in a way to consider not only my own interest but also the interest of other people.”

Mushine Senart / the ECOSOC pheromones on behalf of the Youth Peace Ambassador Network

“The game was very practical. We often talk about the SDGs in the theoretical form but when we do it in the practical form the lessons that we learn stay in our mind much longer. In the game, we actually witnessed that the impact of the every action that we took affected the world either positively or negatively. …. That really got me. It made me think that I want to step forward to be a solution provider, not a bystander. …. Now the SDGs are part of my daily lifestyle. It begins with us as individuals, it begins with me.”

Victoria Ebuae / the UNESCO Youth representative on education

“The most important thing to my team was to work with our neighbors, instantly. There was not even a hesitation about sharing resources and solving problems together rather than just doing it alone. What was intriguing to me is that there was this midway point in the game where we were shown pictures of what our current world status looked like. Those pictures had the impact that changed the four of us. We became more interested in a balanced society and global world rather than just having achieved our goals and we became more altruistic. We wanted to help others, we gave our money away, we gave our time away.“

Amy Sparkman / from Connecticut, an educator at heart

“As manager of the Griffith University EcoCentre, Australia, I have been working on localising the SDG’s for over two years. After experiencing the game, I was very excited to find a tool which will help people understand the importance of the SDG’s and how they relate to real world scenario’s. As a community engagement sustainability educator, the 2030 SDG Game is exactly what I have been looking for to connect and empower people of all ages and sectors of the community through interactive play. ‘Think Global, Act Local‘. “

Delwyn Langdon / A manager of Griffith University EcoCentre.

“Through this experience, we have faced the serious conflicts of our time through strategies that reduce their real magnitude, making them accessible and stimulating our curiosity to know more. We have convinced ourselves that our participation is valuable and can make a difference. We have confirmed the need to promote the SDGs, and it has inspired and motivated us to act in real life to build the world we want to see in 2030. “

María Alcantud-Díaz / A collaborator of the Chair of Cooperation and Sustainable Development of the University of Valencia.

Who Tried The Simulation ?