15 September 2016
Award-winning design by Daniela Gilsanz and Ryan Murphy is looking for partners to become a proper release
Board games have a lot to teach. Whether it’s history, economics, sociology or geography – or sometimes all of these and more – tabletop titles aren’t always just fun to play; they can also impart real-life knowledge.
Designers Daniela Gilsanz and Ryan Murphy know more than most the ability of board games to educate players, which is why they’ve dedicated to combat the social taboo over menstruation with The Period Game.
The game consists of a ring-shaped board connected to a large replica of a uterus. Each turn, players take it in turns to turn one of the ovaries, which drops a marble into the tray. If it’s a red marble, that player has had their period. A clear marble means they’re not menstruating just yet.
Then the player picks up a card relating to whether they experienced their period or not – choosing to either apply protection, prepare for their period or head to the nurse’s office if its an ‘Oops… you leaked’ specialty action. As they work their way around the board, they’ll also go through puberty, growing breasts and sprouting hair in new places, then moving on to their menarches.
Each space represents one week, with the ring accounting for eight months.
The game’s educational focus is bolstered through an accompanying two ‘Wait, really?’ booklets which serve as both instructions on how to play and an explanation of how the in-game mechanics relate to real-life occurrences.
It’s an impressive way of teaching children and young teenagers – male and female alike – about the realities of a natural bodily function.
The Period Game picked up a Red Dot Design award earlier this year, and Gilsanz and Murphy say they’re now on the hunt for partners to make the prototype (which they made for a school project) a real product.