Saturday, December 7, 2013

Day 5: Today's Hero

Mechanics: Real-time
Theme: Mall, Superhero
Victory: Most Experience Points
Constraint: Players should stand.

Ok, so today I'm going to stretch things a bit from a strictly board game paradigm.  This is definitely still a game, and my first thoughts were along the lines of a mission-themed card game, but then I almost immediately had some ideas that made it much more suited to play on android/ios devices, so I'm going to explain the concept as an app/game for those devices instead.  This is almost entirely because I think this would be a great worldwide/social game, and not particularly a game that really gets the most out of small group play.


Daily Game #5: Today's Hero: Mall Marvel


Today's Hero is a game for smartphone or tablet.  There are no additional parts, per se.

You must supply your own superhero costume and identity.  Your hero/heroine identity is limited only by your imagination.

Theme, mechanics and setting: 

The world is low on do-gooding.  Every town needs a hero.  Are you ready to make a difference?

Today's Hero: Mall Marvel challenges every player to become a hero in their own town, and to make a difference in other people's lives.  It's a social feedback game, where everyone can see that you've done good deeds, and top players are those who have been willing to go out of their way to help others.

Every time you play TH:MM, the game draws three quests from a pool of user submitted and screened good deeds that can be done in a public environment like a mall.   You gain experience points by going out and doing those deeds, then recording a short video with the person you've helped, where they verify your deed.  Once the video is uploaded, you are awarded experience points for that quest.

Quests are mostly simple things: help someone put their groceries in their car, help someone fill their shopping list, keep a lonely dad company while the family is shopping, carry the bags for an older couple, stop traffic so some kids can cross the road, etc.  Users can submit new quests to the quest database, which is moderated by the user base.

Heros need to wear a costume of some kind to make themselves stand out from the crowd.  A superman shirt might be sufficient, but we encourage players to go all out.  Get a cape and a mask!  Wear some tights!  Make a real impression on the people you are helping!  :)

There is a dual scoring system.  Players get a base XP score from the verified deed being uploaded to the website, but they get additional points from other users who recognize their efforts.  If you are a hero, spend some time reviewing the deeds of your peers, and if someone has done some truly noteworthy heroics, you can award them extra points by upvoting their videos.

Every day, week, month and year, heros are given recognition on the homepage of Today's Hero on the Hero Roll Call, plus awards from participating businesses and charities who support TH in making a difference in the world.  You can also earn badges for your good deeds to put on your Facebook page and your TH profile on the TH homepage.

Today's Hero is about making the world a better place.  It's about you making a difference today, and having fun doing it.  Will you be Today's Hero?  Or will you just get to it tomorrow?


  1. Nice! i've done something like this for my essay in Gamification! =) i've awarded badges and and Experience points, so people could evolve in the community! =) fun indeed, almost like a LARP competition!

  2. Do you mean that Gamification coursera? What was the reaction to the essay?

  3. Fantastic! Reminds me of everything and more that Jane McGonigal would love and support!

    Now to actually make this thing... M I Rite?