Melissa Kagen

Assistant Professor of Interactive Media and Game Development

Items found in Melissa Kagen's office

In each issue, we introduce you to members of the faculty through items they have in their offices.

1. Foam dice

These dice are helpful in every game designing course I teach. You can use them in paper prototyping, where you create a rough draft of a game using simple materials. They can be dice in a paper game, but also as something to throw in an athletic game.

2. Cookies

I offer cookies to students who come for office hours to help break the ice and make me seem less intimidating. This particular brand is vegan, so I can eat them, too.

Melissa Kagen

Melissa Kagen

3. Wandering Games

My book Wandering Games, published in fall 2022 by MIT Press, looks at the ways we wander through gaming worlds, and what that says about our concepts of work, colonialism, gender, and death.

4. Poker Chips

My grandfather gave these to me. He taught me how to play cards when I was four and gave me a lifelong love of gaming. I use these chips to teach poker in Intro to Critical Game Theory.

5.  Juggling Balls

I learned how to juggle when I played a jester character in a college theater production. I came to game theory through the theater. Juggling is great stress relief.

6. Game Cards

These are Mary Flanagan’s Grow a Game cards, which I use in many of my classes. I use them as a quick way to get students designing games.

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