Paul Pessolano's Reviews > Reality Is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World

Reality Is Broken by Jane McGonigal
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Feb 20, 11

Read from February 16 to 20, 2011

If you are a "gamer" or "Futurist" this book may very well be suitable to you. I am neithe a gamer or futurist, therefore I find myself highly unqualified to review this book. I will however give you my impression of it.

I really liked the first half of the book because McGonigal gives some, what I would consider, alarming facts about the amount of time that is spent playing video and computer games.

There are between 174 million and 183 million Americans that are active gamers. In other countries:

China - 200 Million

India - 105 Million

Europe - 100 Million

and possibly another 100 million in other parts of the world.

In the United States gamers spend, on average, forty-five hours a week gaming.

Jane McGonigal is trying to put this to good use by using games to improve the world. She has introduced several games for this purpose.

World without Oil where players are asked to submit changes, solutions, and adaptions when faced with a world oil shortage.

Evoke asked players to address the problems of climate changes and world poverty.

These are just a few of the programs that were initiated to address present and coming world problems. McGonigal is hoping that through the information obtained from the gamers the world will be better prepared for the future.

McGonigal lists the games at the end of her book so that the reader can go online to study or participate in them.

I found the first half of the book to be very interesting, but the second half left me bored to tears. In her defense, I am not a gamer, and the second half may very well be suited to the gamer - but not to me. I also found some of the games to be downright "hokey" like "Tombstone Hold 'Em", "Top Secret Dance Off", and "C2BK'.
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