Gaming community — What is Gaming Community?

 What is a gaming community, everything you need to know about them!

The gaming (gaming) community is a large community of specialists that originally arose in the 1930s in the USSR and now exists in Russia and Belarus, practicing the use of games, gaming methods in various areas of public life: in economics, pedagogy ( game training ), psychology, military business, consulting, etc.

Also, the term “gaming community” is also used in relation to developers and users of computer games. Creation in the USSR in the 1930s of business games, and then, starting from the 1960s, “open-type games”. These include: organizational and activity game (ODI), reflexive game , innovative game (INI), etc. contributed to the formation of the gaming community (IS) as a kind of factor in the social development of our country. Self-name of IP representatives: “ game technician ”, “game practitioner”, “ methodologist ” (in a special, game-technical sense); in some cases, their practice turns into a permanent profession.

Currently, there are two types of games, corresponding to two generations of developments in this area:

business (or simulation) games;
open type games (representational games).

Business games

A business (imitation) game is a game that allows you to explore a social system by experimenting with its model; an experiment that reproduces the functioning of the system in time. Such games imitate organizational and economic interactions of governing bodies in various economic situations. In general, simulation games are a kind of device for reproducing processes and coordinating economic interests.

Business games are divided into three groups:

  • educational, which are used in the training or retraining of personnel;
  • production, used to solve real issues of current activities and development of specific organizations;
  • research, which are carried out during experiments in the field of management and economics.

The simulation game is organized as follows. Its participants in the situation proposed by the organizer make certain decisions, imitating the performance of pre-assigned roles, reacting to the actions of participants performing other roles. Given their reaction, new decisions are made and the cycle repeats. Participants in the game have the opportunity to see the long-term consequences of their actions.

At the end of the game, each game stage is analyzed and discussed, the order of actions of each participant is restored, the correctness of the decisions made by him is assessed from various points of view: an individual player, simulated departments of the organization, the system as a whole. The information obtained is summarized and chains of cause-and-effect relationships are distinguished [1] .

To conduct a simulation game, extensive technical documentation is required, including: 1) characteristics of the simulation object, 2) explanatory note, 3) terms of reference, 4) materials on the problem under study, 5) game scenario, 6) description of the game environment, 7) description of participants’ behavioral algorithms, 8) game prospectus, 9) guidance to the administrator-leader of the game, 10) instructions to the players, 11) management of the game environment, 12) experiment program, 13) experiment report.

History of business games

The priority in the creation of business games (BI) belongs to our country. The first business game in the USSR and in the world, was developed under the leadership of M. M. Birshtein at the Leningrad Engineering and Economic Institute at the end of 1931 and held on June 23, 1932. The theme of the game: “The deployment of the production of the assembly shop of the newly built typewriter plant in the starting period ”, — in abbreviated form — “Start of the shop”. The game lasted two days and 24 people took part in it [2] .

In 1933–1934. games were developed and carried out related to the introduction of dispatch services in the industry. About 40 games of various purposes, nature and themes were introduced. A notable milestone was the production restructuring game “Red Weaver”, developed at the Leningrad Industrial Academy. S. M. Kirov on the instructions of the People’s Commissariat of Light Industry. It was called “Urgent transfer of the Krasny Tkach weaving factory to another assortment” and was held on the weekend of December 1936. The game lasted 5 days and lasted about 30 hours.

In 1938, business games were actually banned in the USSR, and their developers were subjected to repression. The resumption of business games in the USSR takes place after the war and is associated with the activities of Professor I. M. Syroezhin at Leningrad State University . In 1972, the first department of business games was created in one of the branch institutes for advanced training under the guidance of Professor R. F. Zhukov.

The first management simulation game in the United States, called “AMA” after the name of the American Management Association, was held in 1956 and was devoted to the development of a large manufacturing company for the next 4–5 years. This game was held with the participation of 20 largest firms and immediately received wide recognition. Currently, business games are included in the curricula of most universities and business schools in the United States and they are given a lot of time. In the United States, it is customary to publish complete sets of working materials related to business games. The first business game using a computer (machine CI) was developed in the USA.

According to incomplete data from existing directories, by 1980 there were over 2,000 business games in the world. Of these, 1210 were taken into account in the capitalist countries (including over 1000 in the USA), 450 in foreign socialist countries, and about 300 in the USSR. By 1986, there were already about 740 developed DIs in the USSR. Of these, about 85 percent were actually used [3] .

At present, the Association of Developers of Gaming Social Simulation Methods (ARISIM) has been established in Russia, uniting about 400 specialists in the field of CI. In July 1992, with the participation of M. M. Birshtein, an international conference dedicated to the 60th anniversary of the creation of business games was held.

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Methodological movement and the emergence of representational games

The appearance of games of the second generation, representational games, is associated with the activities of the Moscow Methodological Circle (MMK) , which has been working since 1963 under the leadership of G. P. Shchedrovitsky .

The developments of MMK served as the basis for the emergence of open-type games, which were most widely used: organizational-activity games (ODI, since 1979) and, a little later, organizational-thinking (OMI) and innovative games .

At the methodological seminars of MMK there was an in-depth study of philosophical problems. The subject of initial interest was the work of Aristarchus , Euclid , as well as the logic of “ Capital “ by K. Marx and the structure of human mental activity.

To develop the mental abilities of the participants in the movement and to study the structure and mechanisms of mental activity, the subject of consideration was the own process of thinking of the circle participants. To this end, all discussions were recorded on a tape recorder and then printed out on typewriters. For forty years hundreds of volumes of typewritten materials of seminars and games have accumulated in methodological circles.

The “tape-recording technology” of the organization of intellectual work has also led to the extraordinary fertility of some authors who, by organizing the printing of the materials of their seminars, were able to publish several books a year every year. Often these books were published by rotaprint, in peripheral or technical publishing houses, in small circulations and practically ignored by official philosophy and social sciences. The rejection of these publications in the Soviet era was also due to the fact that they used a deliberately complicated and well-developed specialized methodological language.

This special language served several purposes. First, the task was to develop an artificial methodological metalanguage, which could be used by representatives of subject areas that are far from each other. This language is designed to overcome the subject limitations of specialists and allows them to enter a certain common over-subject space of “system-thinking activity”, where interaction of specialists is possible in the development of large-scale social programs. Secondly, the methodological language served as a means of developing the thinking of the participants in the movement and the development of the methodology itself, as well as a means of “digesting” foreign elements. To master the methodology and methodological language, which took more than one year, and not to become “one’s own” was too difficult. Thirdly, in passing, this language served as a means of filtering out the incapable.

Organizationally, the community functioned in the following way. The Moscow Methodological Circle acted as a “parent” structure. People who wished to join the movement took part in its work and, over time, having mastered it, created their own subsidiary methodological associations. Further, this process spread like a chain reaction.

The personality of G. P. Shchedrovitsky left a deep imprint on the entire culture of the methodological movement. The creator of the ODI had a tough character, and he considered conflict to be one of the main means to encourage people to self-development, to knock them out of a conformist position. People who have gone through the school of such work differ sharply from those around them: their thinking is sharper and more accurate, their speech is somewhat slow, but especially clear, they are usually more confident in themselves.

As a profession, methodology and game technology took shape in the 1980s, when the first commercial orders for methodological developments and games began to arrive from various organizations, which allowed some representatives of the movement to live solely on the fees from these works. Society began to become widely acquainted with the methodological movement and open-type games for the first time in the course of perestroika. The most striking and widely recognized work of SMD methodologists was the first election of directors at the RAF and at Artek.


  • Belchikov Ya.M., Birshtein M.M. Business games. Riga: Avots, 1989.
  • Efimov V.M., Komarov V.F. Introduction to managerial simulation games. Moscow: Nauka, 1980.
  • Mamardashvili M.K. The beginning is always historical, that is, by chance // Questions of Methodology, 1991, N 1, p. 44–53.
  • Shchedrovitsky G.P. , Kotelnikov S.I. Organizational-activity game as a new form of organization and a method for the development of collective mental activity. In the book: Innovations in Organizations: Proceedings of the Seminar / Edited by N. I. Lapin. M.: VNIISI, 1983. S. 33–54.
  • Shchedrovitsky G.P. , Rozin V.M., Alekseev N.G. etc. Pedagogy and logic. — M. Kastal, 1993. 415 p.
  • Shchedrovitsky P.G. To the analysis of the topic of organizational-activity games. Preprint. M.: Nauchn. biol center. Researcher of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR in Pushchino, 1987. 43 p.
  • Anisimov O.S. Fundamentals of methodological thinking. M.: Vneshtorgizdat, 1989. 412 p.
  • Anisimov O.S. The pedagogical concept of the restructuring of postgraduate education. M.: Russian Academy of Personnel Support for the AIC, 1991, 101 p and dota 2 account boosting.
  • Anisimov O.S. Educational games and game practice. Novgorod: Novgorod Zonal Komsomol School, 1989.
  • Popov S.V., Shchedrovitsky P.G. Leadership Competition. All-Union competition for the position of director of the RAF minibus plant: case analysis. Moscow: Prometheus, 1989.
  • Makarevich V.N. Game methods in sociology: theory and algorithms. M.: Publishing House of Moscow. un-ta, 1994.
  • Makarevich V.N. Game practices methodologists: “invisible community” comes out of the underground // Sociological research. 1992. №7.
  • Makarevich V.N. Tea drinking in the Looking Glass (from the experience of management consulting as part of a Russian-American team) // Sociological research. 1991. №12. S. 57–62.


  1. ↑ See: Efimov V.M., Komarov V.F. Introduction to managerial simulation games. Moscow: Nauka, 1980. Game design. (Textbook for universities) Ed. L.V. Burnt. Kyiv. 1988.
  2. ↑ Belchikov Ya.M., Birshtein M.M. Business games. Riga: Avots, 1989, pp. 76–78.
  3. ↑ Belchikov Ya.M., Birshtein M.M. Business games. Riga: Avots, 1989, p. 94–96.