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The Migration Game


A confernece format game proposing an innovatie form of knowledge exchange and networking   


Prague, The Czech Republic

2 Sessions with 300 Participants

Developed by Play the City for the Prague reSITE festival in 2016, this game reveals the complexity of the migration challenge for a fictional midsize European city. Players can choose one of 10 roles, each with distinct powers, such as the mayor, activist, journalist, designer, and refugee. Strategize your move, lobby with other players and see how your city takes shape with newcomers. How much influence will your initiative finally have?

Game Rules

rule 0

Take one of the 10 roles and read your mission brief carefully

rule 1

Play sequentially, as orchestrated by the game master: Strategize your move and place it on the game board.

rule 2

Watch previous players’ moves carefully and make choices accordingly. They can become your allies or opponents. Lobbying is allowed to influence upcoming moves.

rule 3

The Migrant role gets the last say and has the right to remove one initiative from the board, give hearts to favorite projects and/or generate an urgent initiative missed by previous players.

Game Roles

Player #1


Express your city vision’s in 3 words

Choose an adjective as proposed by the game or create your own!

e.g. it can be a conservative city or an open one, focused on technological progress

Player #2

Policy maker

What are the number of migrants entering the city per year? Where they are settled -

in a camp or elsewhere?

Player #3


What will be your strategy? Creating urban renovation densification projects, new developments, self-built settlements, existing city or something else?

Player #4


Decide the amount of money to be spent in newcomers. Where do your major investments go?

To urban renovation densification projects, new developments, self-built settlements, or the existing city?

Player #5

Urban activist

Locate reactions on public space and mark them on the game board.

What are the reactions in your communities? Is everyone happy and welcoming? Are there demonstrations?

Player #6


You have heard the mayor’s vision, investments and developments so far. Is they enough support for newcomers? What are your strategic moves? How many people will you reach how? Choose one of the props as prepared by the game or bring in your own strategy.

Player #7


Is there a fresh approach necessary, instead of that taken by an NGO who is too institutionalized and slow to respond to the urgent needs of newcomers? Act either from the suggested game unit or create your own effective projects. Where do they take place in the city?

Player #8


Given the steps taken by the previous players what is your strategy for making and sharing stories? Do you agree with ongoing developments or will you instead publish opposing stories? What is the right medium for your position?

Player #9


You are the community and now it is your turn! You can make donations to the newcomers but it is easier said than done. Which initiatives do you support and with how much money? Is there a need to cover forgotten support and welcome?

Player #10


You are the migrant and have a special role for influencing all the steps relating to your arrival  in this game. You can evaluate, stop or propose new initiatives. Give hearts to projects you like, remove 1 initiative you find unacceptable, and start a new initiative yourself if it was overlooked.

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