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Jason Butler

Game Developer


A serious business

A serious business

A serious business

A serious business

Jason Butler, award-winning game

developer for seriously creative digital

learning provider, Sponge, discusses the

value of games and gamification in

learning, particularly when it comes to

creating a 'buzz'.

My company is working on innovative and

creative use of games in L&D, including a

new game that seeks to turn employees into

the first line of defence against a cyberattack.

Learning via games has been proven to be

successful for a number of reasons: Because

games are experiential in nature, learning can

be applied immediately; they have been

proven to yield higher gains and improve

retention over more traditional training

methods; mirroring real-world scenarios,

users are able to 'play' in a risk-free

environment; and games can be played

repeatedly - after all, practice makes perfect!

But, more than that, because they're fun to

play, they create excitement and hype

amongst the workforce, boosting employee

buy-in with the learning and messages


Games get people talking and thinking about

the topics presented and businesses that

harness this interest and engagement will

drive real behaviour change.

When risk is a game

Where learning games work particularly well

is taking a typically 'serious' or 'dull' topic and

making it interactive and engaging through

gameplay. This is exactly what we did with our

GDPR Sorted game, launched last year to

coincide with introduction of the new data

regulations, and what we've replicated with

the recently launched Cybersecurity Sorted -

our second off-the-shelf game in the 'Sorted'

series. Both are fun, fast-paced games

designed to embed best practice and instil

desired behaviours in employees to mitigate

business risk.

Data protection and cybersecurity are

undoubtedly serious topics; ironically,

humans often cause or exacerbate threats

but, crucially, they also have a huge role to

play in helping to protect a business. Learning

games not only mitigate risks, but arm

employees with the skills and confidence

needed to be the first line of defence.

With both 'Sorted' games, we recreated realworld office environments, portrayed in a fun

and visually compelling way.


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