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Game Frame: Unlocking the Power of Game Dynamics in Business and in Life [Hardcover]

Aaron Dignan
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
Price: 15.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

12 May 2011 1451611056 978-1451611052
In a digital world, our strategies for success have changed. Now comes a book that explains how to use computer games to be more competitive. Few aspects of the digital zeitgeist are as iconic or fundamental as gaming-Dignan and his peers, who grew up playing digital games, are now using gaming strategies to change the workplace. Merging the power of play with the keys to success, Game Face distils what Dignan and his generation have learned into a guide for mastering the future. As this book shows, life really is a game and it turns out better for those who know how to play it. Game Face outlines why games are such important trends in culture today, why everything from our iPhones to our Priuses actually prime us to be instinctive players, and how the brain skills learned in gaming can make anyone more competitive at whatever they do. The result is the first prescriptive explanation of what gaming is, how the psychology behind it works, and how the behaviours learned can sharpen our skills in everything from business to parenting. Illuminated throughout with a series of real world examples, Game Face delivers a crash course in game design and behavioural psychology that will excite readers of every generation.

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Frequently Bought Together

Game Frame: Unlocking the Power of Game Dynamics in Business and in Life + For the Win: How Game Thinking Can Revolutionize Your Business + Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: The Free Press (12 May 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1451611056
  • ISBN-13: 978-1451611052
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 14.7 x 22.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 574,016 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


""Game Frame" is an excellent crash course on how to add game mechanics to improve nearly any experience." --Jesse Schell, author of "The Art of Game Design"

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mixed bag of mostly sweet treats 24 Jun 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Many books on game design are either textbooky and ponderous or same-old, same-old, even when trying not to be. (See my review of For The Win). Game Frame manages to avoid both of these pitfalls by virtue of a secret fact: it is not one book but three.

The first book consists of the first six chapters, annoyingly called Levels, and covers all the usual suspects you'd expect in an intro of this sort. We hear from flow and the hero's journey (1), the rise and business of video games (2), the meaning of play and fun (3), the heart of games and twelve good reasons why we love them (4), the future and technology of 'serious games' (5), and dystopian concerns with 'ubiquitous games' (6).

Throughout all this, Digman keeps it crisp and snappy. It's a business book, Jim, not a thesis! I appreciated his references to several relevant psychological effects (Wobegon, Flynn, overjustification) and other relevant studies. In fact, his grasp of psychology is one of Dignan's strengths, with interesting references to neuroplasticity (p. 21), Cognitive Evaluation Theory (p. 65), and the work of Michael Apter (p. 66 - British founder of 'Reversal Theory').

The second book consists of three chapters that contain a disproportionate wallop of Game Frame. In these, Digman provides an introduction of 'behavioural games', his phrase for any "real world activity modified by a system of skills-based play" (p. 81). He then offers his Game Frame Method of game design (8), followed by many examples of these game elements in action (9).

Behavioural games seem to cover a wide range of entities from ARGs to gamification projects. Chapter/Level Eight offers a ten-point framework and process for game design. More experienced minds than mine can judge its merit.
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Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
A general book about how to make work and management interesting just like games make mundane things like collecting coins interesting.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting 18 Mar 2012
By Tim S
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book is incredibly interesting. Its a mixture of personal experience, theoretical explanations and examples. It's like the secret textbook for marketers/designers/creatives/entrepreneurs. I havent given it full 5 stars because I'm strict with my staring and never give 5s!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.6 out of 5 stars  17 reviews
26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love, love love this book! 27 Nov 2011
By shortcinema - Published on
I am not a hardcore gamer. I define that as I don't own a console, I played the occasional Facebook word game like Scrabblus and I am slowly developing a minor addiction to free online Bejeweled and Angry Birds.

With that said, I LOVE this book. It teaches how I can develop behavioral games that can affect my career, my life and my community.

I love how the chapters are called Levels which made me feel like I had to "work up" through the book.
The first seven levels (chapters) are well researched, giving the historical and cultural relevance of games and the importance of play in everyday life.

At first I was annoyed by some of the examples the author provided because they were apps, organizations or websites I am already aware of, if not fully engaged with. But then I realized that is the point. Game mechanics are becoming more and more intertwined in our lives.

Even this review has elements of gaming.
- I write it.
- You read it.
- You decide if it is helpful by clicking the YES or NO button below it.
- Enough people do that and I have a chance as showing up as a "most helpful review" for this book.
Amazon, in a mark of genius, has made writing reviews (a crucial part of selling books) fun AND competitive.

All the knowledge gained in levels 1 through 7 are applied in the last three chapters (levels) where you are given the building blocks to create your own games.
The biggest light bulb moment for me was that people don't necessarily play games to win.

Game Frame will not teach how to write the code for the next Call of Duty or Angry Birds but you will fully understand WHY games like those are popular. And how you can take the same dynamics with practice and apply them to your employees, kids, students, yourself or any place where you are trying to effect change.

Since reading this book have I set up parameters with a trainer at my gym and one of her other clients for a competition that regardless of who wins will improve both our workouts.

P.S. Google the author Aaron Dignan with the words 99 percent video. You will find his 30 minute presentation "How to Use Games to Excel at Life and Work". It was this video that me run not walk to buy this book.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful, Practical, and Fun 15 Mar 2011
By jimbabb - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Outstanding read! From the excellent prose and personal examples to the insightful theories, Game Frame will simply make you smarter. While life isn't a game, life can certainly learn a thing or two from the elements that make games engaging, satisfying, and rewarding experiences. Game Frame provides readers a lens to make our own lives an epic win (or just better).
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very practical and applicable to all kinds of situations 21 May 2012
By DDIP - Published on
This book concisely explains the fundamentals of engaging and effective games of all kinds. While not a long book, the author provides principals and a multitude of clarifying examples in a down-to-earth fashion. The book has really helped me understand my son and his "game"-oriented personality, but it is equally applicable to professional and social situations. After providing an introduction and rationale for his position and the importance of games in today's world, he proceeds to explain the ten general building blocks of effective games:
1. Activity
2. Player Profile
3. Objective
4. Skills
5. Resistance
6. Resources
7. Actions
8. Feedback
9. Black Box
10. Outcomes

He then delves into a variety of specific building blocks, each with recommendations and examples, including:
1. Targets
2. Competition
3. Chance
4. Time Pressure
5. Scarcity
6. Puzzles
7. Novelty
8. Sensation
9. Recognition
10. Status

For less than $10 on Amazon, this book is well worth the price if you'd like to understand games or make any aspect of your life or those of coworkers and friends more interesting. I'm already using several of the principles I've learned and intend to use many more.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Book! 6 April 2011
By photoman700 - Published on
This is a great book that has a lot of insightful and actionable content throughout. Aaron writes about the importance of games in our culture and how they can possibly be used to influence more positive behavior. This is a very intriguing concept for businesses and organizations, because it has a lot of potential to increase engagement with your clients, employees, etc. A lot of us already do the things that Aaron talks about in the book on a small scale, in terms of making up little games to make tedious work more enjoyable (like car trip games), but the magic of this book is using it's ideas on a bigger scale.

Foursquare is an example of a gaming system wrapped around the real world and it leads people to do things they wouldn't normally do. Given the average age of a gamer is now in the early 30's this is a great time in history to use games to make positive changes in the world. Aaron even addresses the issue of the negative effects of a future gaming world, where every company has a rewards system for us to play and how that could negatively affect our behavior.

Either way if you are interested in innovative thought and how gaming can be applied to our everyday lives, then you need to read this book! 5 Stars!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A compelling read... 15 Mar 2011
By J S - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Game Frame is a compelling book about the power of games and why they belong as a tool to make our everyday lives more fulfilling. I was most impressed by the caliber and quality of the research the author did, gathering some of the best insights from literally dozens of experts, stories and anecdotes about the history of gaming and the powerful examples it has set around the globe. Eradicating boredom is possible.
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