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Wherein I avoid references to “The Matrix” while discussing futuristic playground equipment.

I can’t say for certain, but this may just be the next step in Whac-A-Mole evolution.

Behold NEOS :

NEOS [by Playworld Systems] introduces videogame elements—blinking lights, buttons, beepers and timers—into outdoor playgrounds. Players run, jump, and work together to chase down light as it bounces from panel to panel throughout the rubberized metal structure. The light-tag games are aerobically intense and last just a minute at most.

Remember Hide-and-go-seek? While it is a game, it’s not generally played with any score keeping or carry-over to later rounds. You play until you’re done playing. It’s intrinsically motivating (i.e. for its own sake) rather than extrinsically motivated (e.g. for points or status). And so it’s as playful as it is gameful. Similarly, while NEOS incorporates videogame elements, I’m calling it a playful technology more than it is a game technology. Hence I blog it here for your thoughtful consideration.

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