Simulation: A Frustration, a 'Game,' or a Meaningful Experience

James W. Gentry, Thomas L. Brown


At first encounter, many students find simulation games to be very complex. As they overcome their initial frustration, the game becomes more challenging and beneficial. However, many students soon determine (justifiably or not) that they have discovered “how to play to the game†and their subsequent actions reflect their decreasing interest in the game. This paper discusses steps that the game administrator or developer may take which will reduce the initial student frustration as well as allow the game to become increasingly complex and challenging as play develops. Most suggestions concern the development of a marketing management game comparable to such existing games as Marketing in Action, MARKSIM, Marketing Strategy, and Compete.

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