Mind Map + Writeup: Working With System Dynamics

I think one of the primary values that we would like to communicate through the game we are currently designing is of policy impact on global health, and we want our game to be a more satirical take showcasing the bleak impact of certain policy changes that the player might not expect to have a cost of lives. In the game, the player will be in charge of Kannibal Kitchen, a restaurant who cooks and sells human organs to their customers, and is tasked with maximizing the companies profits. This is primarily achieved by pushing policies that kill the highest number of humans possible (as to obtain more supply for the restaurant). To model this, we designed a gameplay loop as follows — at each turn the player is granted a certain amount of currency as a budget, which they can choose to either spend on purchasing new organs for the restaurant to meet food demand, or choose to lobbying for certain policies that they think will increase the supply of organs available to them (and thus lower the price). The things that they choose to spend on them impact the state of the overall system (price of future organs, quality of certain organs, etc.), and then another day starts, repeating the loop. For arcs we would like to have it so that at certain breakpoints, the player can choose to upgrade the size of the Kitchen to accommodate additional demand, which will be both a payout for them succeeding in keeping the business afloat, but also a new challenge as they must keep the supply of organs steady through new policy action. A few challenges in our design so far is that the system we intend to model might be a little unclear — we want to demonstrate the impact of certain policy choice on global wellbeing but the loop of our game might lean too far into the business management system.

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