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Game Setup

Start preparing a few weeks before your game. Setting up takes four steps:

Get to Know the Game  Choose a Scenario  Assemble Your Game Materials  Host Your Game

1. Get to Know the Game

Explore these resources to get a sense of how the game works. Don’t worry about memorizing everything—you can always come back later for more details.  

FOUR-MINUTE SNAPSHOT

This video introduces the game's phases and shows you what a game in process looks like.

GAMEPLAY OVERVIEW

This document walks you through how the game is played and the facilitator's role.

DEMO TEST GAME

Try a test game in the Digital Game Portal to get a feel for the script. You can facilitate the game using this portal or a printed script.

What You’ll Need to Play


PEOPLE
12-48 players, plus 1 person to facilitate the game and 1-2 helpers.


A ROOM
Your game room needs to accommodate all of your players and allow players to split into six groups (for example, seated around six tables).


TIME
The game itself takes about an hour. Give yourself 15-30 minutes to set up before players arrive.


TECHNOLOGY
You can facilitate the game with 7 tablets or laptops (Wi-Fi required) OR 1 computer with a projection screen and speakers (no Wi-Fi required).


FREE GAME MATERIALS
Download your own materials or use our ready-to-go game sets. 

2. Choose a Scenario

HURRICANE

It's a peaceful summer day in vibrant Coastal City...until a Category 5 hurricane comes barreling up the coast! Players must work together to help their neighbors evacuate, find shelter, and respond to flooding and power outages.

FLOOD

River City is a mid-sized city surrounded by farmland. As a relentless series of storms bears down, its swollen rivers crest their banks. Players build coalitions to keep their neighbors safe, manage the floodwaters, and clean up after the water recedes.

EARTHQUAKE

Rock City is a large city juggling competing demands. When a major earthquake strikes, players must act quickly to rescue those in danger, deal with damaged infrastructure, and prepare for potential aftershocks.

3. Assemble Your Game Materials

DO-IT-YOURSELF

Print your own game materials and use them again and again! Choose from a variety of printing options to fit your budget and technology.

MATERIALS RENTAL

Borrow a set of pre-printed game materials. Minimal fee covers only the cost of shipping. Complete this request form when you are ready.

FULLY FACILITATED

We’ll send a full set of materials and a trained two-person team to facilitate your game. Minimal fee covers only the cost of travel from Washington, DC. 
Contact us for details. 

Do-It-Yourself Game Materials

Most facilitators report spending less than $25 and about 1-2 hours preparing DIY game materials. The cost and time required depends on the printing resources you have and how durable you want your game to be. Cost-saving tips are provided in the printing instructions.

HURRICANE GAME KIT

Download full kit (116 MB)
Download components separately

 

4. Host Your Game

Ready for game day? Here’s your quick stop for checklists, links, sound effects, and more.