Trash Tycoon Is Greening Social Gaming

October 14, 2011

At Reset we’ve long had an ongoing interest in the idea of “Gamification,” the growing body of thought about how to use online gaming tools to improve our brick and mortar world.

That’s why we took a look at Trash Tycoon, a green-themed game for Facebook from social gaming startup Guerillapps. The game teaches players about environmental issues and sustainability while they compete for prizes.

Instead of building a city, Trash Tycoon asks you to clean one up. In a city like San Francisco, which many of us find unacceptably dirty, that sounds like more than a casual game.

Unlike most social games, Trash Tycoon kicks it up a notch by donating 10% of player’s game purchases to, a non-profit organization dedicated to fighting climate change. The game’s designers think that social play can be fun, educational and incentivize citizens towards social productivity.

Facebook Game Teaches You About Recycling

Trash Tycoon highlights upcycling, the concept of converting trash into new products. Players become recycling entrepreneurs, collecting trash and finding new environmentally friendly uses for discarded items such as plastic bags or building material. As you complete tasks and pick up virtual litter, you earn points, money and ultimately the title of “garbage tycoon.” Al Gore even recently praised the eco-potential of Trash Tycoon.

As you play the game, you clean your virtual city and create products (like fertilizer) with the trash you collect. You’ll learn what can be composted, what gets recycled and what gets upcycled. Now you can waste time and clean up waste at the same time.

Do you think good behavior can be taught through gaming? Would you play Trash Tycoon? 


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Paid for by Phil Ting for Assembly 2012. FPPC ID# 1343137