Ellis on playful living: "this is my personal library of what I've learnt so far while I'm still mischievously exploring..."

Ellis, play alchemist

Cultural attacheés and diplomats creating games

27/07/2018 20:06

[photography by Bram Belloni] At the New Instituut in Rotterdam together with Dutch Culture we collaborated with a group cultural attachés from Russia, Egypt, Morocco and Turkey to discover together each others commons issues and possible new solutions. In a game concept design workshop, they:

  1. described their individual backgrounds, including dreams and nightmares
  2. mapped together these team nightmare and dreams
  3. translated this map to opportunities and obstacles
  4. defined their common team goal and roles
  5. created a game concept as solution
  6. created a prototype plus presentation

And off course one team won the Award of best team result for today, however all team performed amazingly well, plus gathered great insights on the divers topics.

For me personally best reward at the end of the reflection the quote by one of the participants: “You game designers should understand how much there is to be learned about strategising and playing the game truly, from us diplomats!” – I can not agree more, and am happy to share this playful lens in life more.

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apply play, english, workshop

Turncamp festival, who are you, what do you need, and what do you bring?

20/05/2018 11:32

The Turnclub as the aspirations to turn things around via Art.

“Therefore, in navigating a complex world, we need to be intuitive, creative, imaginative, innovative, flexible, and able to respond quickly to what is happening in the moment. Instead of having all of the answers, we learn to be comfortable in the “not knowing.” It helps to be able to see beyond the surface – to perceive beyond the obvious.”
– Alan Seale

At the festival in a beatifull location in Utrecht, Merlijn Twaalfhoven asked me to think of a creative activity plus solution to make people connect with their answers and questions, so we created a wishwall, everyone was invited to write a bit about himself, his context, his ASK and his favorite way of turning. Attached an envelop to collect all aswers and business cards for future continuation together…. 85% of participants of the festival participated to the wall.



english, event, favorite

to solve plastic waste • in Turkey

17/05/2018 19:19

To teach design thinking and other 21 th century skills I was invited to do a workshop (similar as we did a workshop in Pune – India last year) at Bilkent Laboratory and International School (Blis) in Ankara Turkey.

In preperation to this workshop, we first gave exactly the same workshop to the teachers of the school on their yearly education day as one of the courses provided. These teachers have different nationalities but very similar passion about teaching kids plus best of all: a critical thinking attitude. So afternmaking them design a game concept plus prototype as a solution to create waste awareness. They asked good question about the process and end-results and the matters around playing. Read more


Alice, apply play, english, event, workshop

Book launch Apply Play to get ahead of the game

22/04/2018 22:01

This friday april 20th was finally the booklaunch of Apply Play • to get ahead of the game.

I want to thank THNK Academy for providing me this location, in the modules, with my THNK class #5 participants, the idea of writing a book on gamedesign was planted, and now almost three years later…. it is DONE.

With the supergreat help of Darcie Goodwin, my super reader-helpers, and finally Rick Verhoog who managed to make it a beautifull product, and off-course the printers: Chapo.team it was a super evening with many personal plus business connections present. Read more


Alice, apply play, english, favorite, play, serious

Levelling level design

12/03/2018 20:53

Once upon a time a team of students at the University of Amsterdam were very confident about their game concept, and about developing their game. It was a matter of putting the elements and assets together. Then I told him to think about their level design… and again they answered to me: “the levels… we just need to adjust these and balance, once we got everything on the stage together”. Read more


Alice, educational, english, favorite, game

GIST – talking about designing games for a special targetgroup

11/02/2018 22:31

How to design games for a elderly, was the topic of my talk at the Game Developers Conference in Istanbul 2018. I showed samples and experienced, and shared why this target group is so great to use and learn about what a players wants and can do. How to design accessible and desirable games. The audience asked great questions about how to create games not only for entertainment, and how to create awareness on gaming for impact. The organisation was perfect and i received a gentle Thank you note after returning home.

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apply play, english, event, userfriendly, workshop

“The playful wonderland behind great inventions” by Steven Johnson

14/12/2017 18:56

Watch this animation and understand what fun can do….


Alice, apply play, english, favorite

Playing with animals

10/10/2017 10:14

Last weekend of september I was invited to join the Herd of the Internet of Elephants to the Steppes Beyond 2017 Festival in the Royal Geographical Society in London to have visitors play with 6 Augmented Animals in our Safari Central app. This app is a sneak preview to introduce the 6 real animals provided by six different nature organisations to become famous in Next year’s to be launched game. Read more


apply play, english, event, favorite, play

Talking at Internet of People event

03/10/2017 12:23

I was invited to talk at the Internet of people event about Internet of Elephants. I presented the concept of Internet of Elephants and how we aim to reuse location and other data retrieved from scientists and conservation organisations to create compelling games to interact and play with this data. To treasure this real data plus these animals as becoming so scarce, yet so much valuable to learn about life and survival. A great discussion about ethics and “butting in or leave be” came up. I would like to thank the audience for their participation.

(plus the other talks where great on questioning technology and societal matters as privacy, safety, identity protection and ethics, very interesting to have been able to attend!)

link to my prezi  presentation >>

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Alice, apply play, english, event, play

immergent persuasive gameplay

16/09/2017 18:49

This video named Hyper reality is a great example how we could gamify life and add motivational triggers, nudges in an augmented interface… real cool material to ignite the discussion on ethics, plus the freedom for the player, how far can we go? How far do you want to be played? Check the video here >> Read more


Alice, art, english, favorite, gamification, play, psychology, R&D, serious