There's more to playing games than having fun, say those involved in a unique collaboration between Hasbro Inc. and the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD).
Finer points such as cultural differences among players, portability of the game and avoiding domination by any one participant are among the factors that a new generation of designers and players is exploring.
Since September, 19 RISD undergraduate and graduate students majoring in three different disciplines - illustration, industrial design and digital media - have been studying the deeper side of game playing with an eye toward developing new games for the future.
Board games are the focus of their study and, in particular, Hasbro's Cranium game provided the initial model.
"We set out to have the RISD students think about play and game experiences in the spirit of Cranium, where everyone is good at something," said Jill Waller, vice president of design for Cranium and Trivial Pursuit at Hasbro headquarters in Pawtucket.
"Here at Hasbro we always try to refresh our brands in new ways. Reinvent, re-imagine and reignite is our mantra."