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Change Agent


Naval Postgraduate School

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Change Agent is an online strategy game for one to four players. The goal is to spread an idea or innovation through an organization while earning the approval of its members. Each player’s scores report organization members’ attitudes toward the innovation and their satisfaction with the player. Success depends on strategic expansion of the informal network, targeted communication, and use of organizational activities to increase grass-roots support. Each turn, players can choose among organizational actions and informal social influences to obtain information or convince others to support the innovation. Organizational options include top-down communication, training, positive messaging, committee formation, and surveys. Informal actions include discussion with other individuals, meeting with small groups, and asking favorable people to promote the innovation to their co-workers. The formal organization structure is visible from the beginning, and informal social ties become visible as the player interacts with organization members and learns more about the social network. Players can build new relationships for themselves and create opportunities for their supporters to build new relationships, and these ties affect subsequent social influences. Players see changes in their scores and competitors’ scores after each turn. Game statistics from each turn can be reviewed after the conclusion of the game. As players engage with Change Agent, they learn crucial skills for leading innovation in their own organizations.

Game Overview

Change Agent teaches people to use social networks to spread new ideas or innovations. Players learn to recognize social network patterns and see how network gaps and social connections affect diffusion of ideas. They discover that over-reliance on organizational action is not effective, and they learn to use organizational resources to strengthen their use of the informal relationships to foster change. Scores improve when players work purposefully with the informal networks and wisely use the available organizational resources.

The game has two stated goals: spread your idea to as many people as possible, and increase the population’s satisfaction with your leadership. In a two- to four-player game, there is an implicit goal of convincing more people to accept your idea than other players’ ideas, while also becoming more popular as a leader.

The primary audience is adults working in military, government, or other organizations that need to promote new ideas or innovations.

Measures include percentage of members whose attitudes towards the idea or innovation are positive and percentage that are satisfied with the player’s leadership.

Game Specs

Game Engine
Operating System

Game Video

Play the video below to learn more about Change Agent