A new environmentally educational board game called Ethica lets players assume the role of an investment banker or venture capitalist and see how well their green intentions stand up in the world of international finance. The game represents part of the developing trend of environmental education through play.
Ethica is designed to be played by between six and 27 players. Each player assumes the role of a family or banker with money to invest. Players take turns to visit banks where they have to choose a share investment, cooperative investment or a savings account, each investment gives the player either a positive or negative financial, social or environmental score. The winner of the game is the player with the lowest score after three rounds.
The game's developers state that it is based upon the principles behind the collaborative ethical investment group Reseau Financement Alternatif. According to a June 15 statement to Relaxnews by a spokesman for the company, the game will be available at the end of August and will be distributed throughout the UK, France, Switzerland, Poland and Spain.
The game is part of the developing trend of environmental education through play. Other environmentally and ethically themed board games include Bioviva, a question-and-answer-themed game, Earthopoly, a green version of Monopoly, The Green Game and Environchallenge, all of which are available to buy at amazon.com and other retailers.
A range of environmentally educational games are also available online. Perhaps the most successful is Fate of the World, which won "best artistic response" at the 2011 Climate Week Awards and was nominated at the eighth annual Games for Change awards. Players of Fate of the World take charge of an international organization which must make choices on energy usage and emissions while continuing to ensure the stability of the Earth's growing population; the game can be downloaded for $9.95 (roughly €7).