By: J.D. Ross
(315) 443-3094

On October 5th, School of Information Studies (iSchool) Associate Professor Scott Nicholson will be hosting the first meeting of the Junior Game Designers' Guild of Syracuse.

Nicholson's goal for the group is to encourage children under 16 to create games that can make a difference in the Upstate New York community, and is an effort of his Because Play Matters game lab.

For the last two years, Nicholson has run the Game Designers' Guild of Syracuse, which has created games for libraries, museums, and other community groups and provided local game designers with a connection to others to help playtest their games. The goal of the Junior Game Designers' Guild is to create a similar space for kids, where the group will both work with the community and provide a forum where kids can bring their own designs to get feedback from others.

“The Game Designers' Guild has been a great way of connecting people passionate about creating games in the community to those community groups that can use games to make a difference,” says Nicholson. “While kids have always been welcomed at the Game Designers' Guild, having a version of the Guild focused on young game designers will allow us to not only do more, but to create an environment where kids can feel comfortable expressing their feelings and sharing their ideas. This group helps people to realize that those years spent gaining knowledge about how games work as a player can be used to make a difference in their communities.”

This meeting will be held at the community room of the Manlius Public Library, and the goal will be to help the library plan events for their November International Games Day @ Your Library program. The doors will open at 1:45 PM on Sunday, October 5th, and the meeting will run from 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM.

No prior experience is needed; kids (and their parents) with an interest in game design are invited to come to this meeting and participate in the process of creating games and play.

More information can be found at the website for Because Play Matters at: