Blog Post 2: Video Games

I began my video game exploration by playing the Urbanology Online game. Going into this game, I thought it might be a design your own city and essentially run the city. There would be decisions and obstacles the user would have to make and face in order to keep the city running. However, on the BMW Guggenheim Lab, the “game” is more a series of questions that the user answers. As they answer, the user can see their score of positive and negatives based on decisions from the questions from about 8 different categories. Then, once all the questions have been answered, it calculates your results and takes you to the page where it tells you what city best matches your answers and what the highest and lowest priorities are in that city. Then it allows you to name your city, and here I thought then you went on to create your own city; however, it never takes me to a new page after that other than going back and answering the questions again.

After playing this game multiple times, getting a range of answers from Berlin to Chicago, I would use this in my classroom after learning about urbanization and cities. The game does allow one to make their own decisions on issues and see the results, but that is the most manipulation it seems to allow. This would be a great way to have students act like they are in charge making these choices for their city, but to me, this is not much of an action game but rather a survey game.

Overall, this would be okay to do once or twice with students if it went with the lesson they were learning, but I’ve decided to try a different game for next time.



  1. Gabby,

    I found your post on your blog quite insightful. Early on in my search I also, stumbled across this game and found it very interesting. I enjoyed that the game did not have winners and losers, but instead just gave results of what your city would be like with the answers produced. I am interested to know, if you remember what your highest priorities were?

    I liked the connections you made to the classroom to and the application potential you saw for this game. I agree that it could be used show how decisions impact the environment or also show how decisions make us responsible. I was wondering if you stumbled across any connections to Gee through this game? The first thing that comes to mind for me would be the principle of co-design, where one takes ownership of choices. But I’d like to here your take on Gee’s principles in relation to the game.


  2. Gabby,

    What a great idea of how to incorporate gaming and technology into your classroom, especially with social studies. The topic of urbanization of cities always confused me in middle school when learning about it because we were simply told to read from the text book and then we were tested on it. I agree with you that this would be a very effective way of teaching this topic that is fun, engaging, and interesting. I just spent some time answering the questions to see which city I would live in and I got Mumbai. I like how after you receive your answer the game gives you the option learn more about your city. This game is very interesting!


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