Hungry HUNGRY Grad Students is my game in progress! It is a memory building game I began designing for my grandmother, who is rapidly losing her memory. Even though plenty of brain game apps have been recommended to her, she doesn’t like using the internet or any virtual platform, really. Growing up, she did play plenty of board games with us though!
My husband and I are graduate students, and my grandmother is the only person in our family who has a PhD. So we set the theme in a university! The premise: All over campus, there are speaking engagements where free food is being given away, as long as you know where to find it. In order to gain access to the food, you need to show up to the right event location, greet the speaker by name, and compliment the speaker on their topic and food choices. If you can remember all four pieces of information, you score the food card! The winner in a competitive game is the least hungry grad student. In a solo/collaborative game, the game ends when everyone’s hunger has been satisfied.
The game uses the Method of Loci, which helps build memory associations between concepts or things and a specific location. My grandma’s custom version of the game has personal family details, to help remind her of what her kids and grandkids are up to. But with the help of members of the BGDL group who gave us wonderful recommendation of people from history, we made a version for anyone to play.
I just partnered with an artist to make the cards, and I’m really excited to share more as I make progress! Because I live on the opposite side of the US from my grandmother, I already designed a print and play version of the game too, which I’m excited to send to more than just my circle of 20 game loving friends.
Thanks! More to come.