Thoughtcrime: The Board Game

I’ve written a bunch of times here about Thoughtcrime, a role-playing game (based on 1984) that I designed inside of the Literary Worlds virtual environment. That game is still up and running, and many teachers and former students have played it over the years.

More recently, I thought about trying to design a version of the game for smart phones. But until developing applications gets a little more user-friendly, this option is off the table.

So, instead, I went backwards, designing a 6-10 player board game with the indie game publisher The Game Crafter. This is an amazing service, whether you are into games (like me) or not. It allows you to design custom card games or board game, with no real restraints except your imagination and your budget. You’ll need some time: I’m embarassed to admit how many late nights I spent designing Thoughtcrime. And you’ll definitely need a high-end image editor like Photoshop to create a professional-looking game. But I’m kind of geeked to get the game in the mail, and to see if I can round up enough people for an inaugural playing (though versions of the game have already been played).


If you teach 1984 and want to try the game, you can follow the link below. I was hoping the final product would be a little cheaper (even with its steepish price tag, my profit is about $1.00 per unit sold). But I think it might be a blast for British literature students, AP literature students, or literature geeks. If you are at all interested, check out the game here. You can download the instructions and get a better understanding of how the game works. Or, you might try designing your own literary game. In browsing the site, I saw a playable Hamlet that looks like lots of fun.

Download PDF

About RR

Assistant Professor of English Education at Grand Valley State University.
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