Game Theory

The study of games is an opportunity to explore new ways of thinking about engagement, decentralized yet structured ideation, and play from the table-top to the design of cities.

One Field and Two Applications

Thinking about the nature of participation in public planning at the urban level has been the subject of decades of research from public meetings and town halls to surveys and voting, however today game theory has been harnessed in fresh new ways to engage stakeholders of all kinds in ways to promote inclusion and investment in civic projects.

Through studies in complexity theory and its application to the design process for projects of any scale, the nature of gaming has tremendous opportunities and recent manifestations of simulations, games, and workshops have allowed urban planners, designers, and architects to change the narrative while pushing big projects forward.

Board Games and Cities

The development of games whether a board game as the family's evening entertainment or an interactive workshop for design of a new city draws its roots from the same principles and the articles, projects, and research topics here are a reflection of all sides of contemporary discourse. The design of table top board games will be a significant theme across my projects and articles (the first being Alpenrose, a ski-themed engine building Euro-style game) however this site will always have a focus on play in the design and development of urban spaces. Current discourse has been focused on the innovations by the Dutch as they design and redesign the urban landscape.

Designing Alpenrose - A Ski Game

This will be a place to host a narrative of alpenrose as it is developed, content pending...

Almere and the MVRDV Experiments

Some of the most visible implementations of game theory as it relates to public participation in urban development and planning is Oosterwold and the decentralized planning efforts of Almere. The experimental city north of Amsterdam across the Ij has been the subject to some wonderful experiments and launched a whole mindset and era of how to use play during the design and implementation of a master-scale project.

More on this to come as well.


Photo Credit and Caption: Alpenglow Game Board by Sean Wittmeyer

Cite this page:

Wittmeyer, S. (2023, 18 May). Game Theory. Retrieved from

Game Theory was updated May 18th, 2023.

Kickstarter Launch and End Dates Sheet

A few publishers work together and coordinate game launches so that Kickstarter campaigns go smoothly. This spreadsheet is a look into game launches from years back and how everything is planned out.

Jamey Stegmaier's Kickstarter Lessons

This is a compilation of all of Jamey’s posts on creating and running a successful Kickstarter campaign. These are roughly in the chronological order that you’ll need to reference them, starting 6-12 months before you plan on launching your project. If you’re just now discovering this resource, remember: you don’t need to launch today.

Manufacturing Cost Estimator

Panda Game Manufacturing produces games for many publishers and has some handy resources on their website to get an idea of costs for estimating landed costs as you prepare for publishing a game.

Alpenglow Design Series 5. Rules and Revisions The most important part of the process so far has been learning how to teach new players and ditching the personal tutorials for a rulebook is tough. Keep reading... →
Alpenglow Design Process 4. From Wireframes to Illustrations What is arguably just as fun as designing the mechanics of the game is crafting the art and components to make a great first impression yet be easy to play with and enjoy. Keep reading... →
Alpenglow Design Process 3. Play Testing Applying game theory to the process of designing a game is a great way to keep the project on task as anything is subject to change. Keep reading... →
Alpenglow Design Process 2. The First Prototype The first step of getting your first prototype more than pushing print or buying the components. It's the process of thinking out all of the ways you want the game to play and preparing for them. Keep reading... →
Alpenglow Design Process 1. It Started with the Theme A creative discussion in a car on the way to get a Christmas tree turned into the foundation of Alpenrose, a ski resort themed. Keep reading... →
Board Game Alpenglow Hit the slopes in Alpenglow: a thrilling Ski Resort strategy board game for 2 to 5 tycoons. Build your ski area and master the mountain. Keep reading... →