The Thing from The Future

The Blog of the Long Now has a new post on “The Thing from the Future”, a card game about the future. Creators the Situation Lab were loosely inspired by Eno’s famous Oblique Strategies card set from the 1970s (BBC radio documentary | official website).

“Each round of the game begins with a collectively generated creative prompt that describes the type of future a yet-to-be-imagined object comes from, as well as where it fits in a given culture or society, what kind of object it is, and what sort of emotional reaction an observer from the present might have when confronted with it. The player who comes up with the most compelling future scenario wins the round.”

Sounds great, but for younger primary school situations I wonded if the “Emotion” cards might usefully be followed by a guiding “Curiosity” card. This card might prompt the players to ask a short question (perhaps pre-formed, to prevent waffle, obtuseness and bias) about the scenario, of the player who holds the spread. That would nudge the game to be less about emotion + wild imagination than about curiosity + imagining change based on points of discovered evidence.