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Hardcover | $30.00 Short | £22.95 | ISBN: 9780262027816 | 304 pp. | 8 x 9 in | 130 color illus., 27 tables| October 2014
eBook | $21.00 Short | ISBN: 9780262319942 | 304 pp. | 130 color illus., 27 tables| October 2014

Gaming the System

Designing with Gamestar Mechanic
Foreword by James Paul Gee


Gaming the System demonstrates the nature of games as systems, how game designers need to think in terms of complex interactions of game elements and rules, and how to identify systems concepts in the design process. The activities use Gamestar Mechanic, an online game design environment with a systems thinking focus.

About the Authors

Katie Salen Tekinbaş is Professor in the School of Computing and Digital Media at DePaul University and Chief Designer and Researcher at Institute of Play.

Melissa Gresalfi is Associate Professor of Mathematics Education and Learning Sciences at Vanderbilt University.

Kylie Peppler is Assistant Professor in the Learning Sciences Program and Director of the Creativity Labs at Indiana University Bloomington.

Rafi Santo is a doctoral student in the Learning Sciences Program at Indiana University Bloomington.


“Young people growing up today will surely be called upon to address thorny problems that cut across global, interconnected systems: the environment, the economy, the global infrastructure. Few skills will be more important than the capacity to see, understand, and innovate systems. The Interconnections collection, created through a collaboration among scholars, curriculum developers, and teachers across the National Writing Project, provides approaches to teaching systems thinking through activities that also build literacy and support Common Core Standards and career-readiness. This ‘both-and’ approach is a demonstration of what forward-looking curriculum must be in a digital age.”
Elyse Eidman-Aadahl, Executive Director, National Writing Project, University of California, Berkeley
“The books in this collection offer wonderful activities for engaging young people in new ways of making, helping them learn to express themselves creatively with new technologies. But even more important, they engage young people in new ways of seeing, helping them develop new perspectives for understanding the world—and understanding themselves.”
Mitchel Resnick, LEGO Papert Professor of Learning Research, and Director, Lifelong Kindergarten group, MIT Media Lab