Playing Design: A Case Study on Applying Gamification to Construct a Serious Game with Youngsters at Social Risk

This article reports on the experience of co-designing an educational video game aimed at promoting good dietary habits in youngsters and fostering Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), such as SDG 3 (Good Health and Well-Being), SDG 10 (Reduced Inequalities), and SDG 17 (Partnerships for the Goals). To ensure the quality of the results, we developed a methodology under a social innovation paradigm that enabled the co-creation of the game. The methodology was driven by a series of three workshops, during which we adopted several different gamification strategies to support a Participatory Design (PD) process with the stakeholders, a group of local pre-teen and teen girls at social risk (N = 22). Captured requirements materialized into intermediate prototype evaluations that motivated a progressive refinement of the game.