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The phenomenon of “gaming” has inspired plenty of hand-wringing since its inception—from the press, parents, and everyone else concerned with its effects on our brains, bodies and hearts. But what if games could be good, not only for individuals but for the world we all live in? In Power Play, Asi Burak explores how video games, once dismissed as mindless entertainment, are in fact pioneering innovative social change around the world.
As the founder of the nonprofit Games for Change, he has spent the last ten years supporting and promoting the use of video games for social good, in collaboration with leading organizations like Google, NASA, The Rockefeller Foundation and TED. Their games have taught millions invaluable lessons about everything from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to childhood cancer, from healthy pregnancy to basic civics. Now, he looks to the future of games as a global movement. He profiles the luminaries behind some of the most popular examples, including former Supreme Court judge Sandra Day O’Connor and Pulitzer-Prize winning authors Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. And he reveals how the good in games will exponentially increase in the near future, as this powerful and massively distributed tool reaches its full potential.