Human(ities) Games

Human(ities) Games is an Open Educational Resource (OER) game development initiative created by Amy Hildreth Chen and supported by the University of Iowa Libraries

According to OER Commons, Open Educational Resources are "teaching and learning materials that you may freely use and reuse at no cost and without needing to ask permission." Human Games seeks to participate in the OER movement by providing peer-reviewed, freely available, and openly licensed curricular content to support learning. To do so, we create card games that teach humanities concepts suitable for high school, college, or graduate school. Human Games currently supports two projects: Codex Conquest: The Game of Book History and Mark: The Quick Draw Game of Printer's Marks

Our success depends on your feedback. Whether formally or informally given, we welcome your honest assessment of our work. A formal review of Codex Conquest will be published in Printing History while informal profiles of Codex Conquest appeared in Institute for Play and RareBookHub. If you would like to do a game review for a journal, website, or other venue, please contact us if you want us to provide a copy. Otherwise, feel free to follow the directions online to print your own at a local supply shop. If you want to leave us anonymous feedback, write your notes on this open ended survey to pass on your remarks. 

We love to hear stories, see photographs, and read the curricula that responds to our games. After all, the conversation and curricula you choose to pair with our games determines their learning objectives and difficulty level. Human Games asks that, whenever possible, you share your companion assignments through your local institutional repository, OER Commons, and/or with us so that we can all benefit from your work with these learning objects. 

As we hope you will feel empowered to change these games to suit your needs, we invite and encourage you to adapt them to your students and subject interests. All of our game documents are available in Word documents to allow them to be easily changed. Likewise, the cards themselves are formatted on PowerPoint to make it cheaper and easier to tailor their content to your specifications. If you want help to remake the game according to your needs, do not hesitate to reach out. Email Amy Chen at amy-chen [at] to schedule a consultation.