Conferences are boring, I want to play games

Bored_studentsI know everyone has been eagerly awaiting an opportunity to spend money to get one of my papers. The wait is over!!!

It's this paper where I say "Instead of having talks at conferences, can we have games?" I don't know, I find talks so boring. I just get antsy. And it seems to me that the real work at conferences gets done outside the context of the talks anyway. So I had this idea that you could get rid of the talks and replace them with board games. During a board game, Player A is thinking while Players B, C, and D chat. That's where the work gets done. To publicize the work, and make it common knowledge, this conference would have a cheesy idea market and a pecha kucha at the end.

Now if someone organized a conference like this I would probably want to come. No matter the topic, you know? Hey it's a conference on abdominal secretions in mollusks, but you get to play biology-themed Eurogames for a day. Dominant Species, Evo, Pandemic. Cool! I would totally go to that.

Comments on Conferences are boring, I want to play games:

greglas says:


I really enjoyed the Ludium I attended, and I certainly learned a lot from it. I applaud you for innovating with the format of the standard conference and bringing together people with diverse backgrounds to collaborate together on game-related work. But at the same time, I've got to confess that I don't find most conferences I attend boring -- quite the opposite! At most conferences I attend, there are multiple tracks and I'm unhappily agonizing over which panel not to attend. So your boredom may be an economics thing? I could imagine there might be some conferences in some subjects that I would find boring -- but at your average academic conference, I feel like a kid in a candy store.

Posted Mar 5, 2013 5:58:16 AM | link

Edward Castronova says:

I'm sure it is a style thing. The seminar format works for most people. Many people who like seminars would probably hate sitting around and chatting over games!

Posted Mar 5, 2013 8:55:54 AM | link

Andrew Peterson says:




If you can't find a game being played at any of these conferences, you fail :-)

Posted Mar 6, 2013 8:59:58 AM | link

greglas says:

Ted, that's probably true. And I suppose it might depend on the quality of the presentations too. If the quality of the presentations at a conference is seriously low, I think I'd prefer chatting over games...

Posted Mar 6, 2013 8:08:24 PM | link

Scrabble Hints says:

I agree.. games > talks! I'd much rather play games haa.

Posted Mar 9, 2013 6:00:40 PM | link