Gaming for Behavior Change is a nice, brief publication addressing change making gaming.
Design shop Method, that is doing some interesting things in this area, offers this description:
“An estimated 3 billion hours are currently spent on gaming every week. By age 21, the average American will have spent more than 10,000 hours playing video games – the equivalent to 5 years of work at a full time job! The total amount of time that World of Warcraft has been played is 5.93 million years. Game designer and researcher Jane McGonigal makes the case in her 2010 TED talk that games inspire people the way real life does not, raising the question: what is it about games that enables this extraordinary degree of engagement?
Several studies have sought to unlock the psychological attraction of game play, but what is abundantly clear is that the whole gaming industry has been growing rapidly. Casual gaming company Zynga recently surpassed 100 million unique monthly visitors with the release of their viral hits Mafia Wars and Farmville, giving them an estimated valuation rumored to be $4 billion.”
Read a similar publication that addresses change agents through the mobile environment: Place, Space, and the Mobile Interface.