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why to play - how to play - the game isn't real - LETSplay login - notes on beta

Rules for LETSplay on-line

* The purpose of this game is to introduce you to the idea of community money, and to show you how to use it.

* You are presumed to be a member of a community.

    As in the real world, you earn and spend in a series of trades, or plays, each involving yourself and another player.

    Your objective is to see whether you are able to purchase the highest cost item in each % category of the trading list.

    You start the game with $200 of imaginary "fed" $ (or GBP sterling), and an initial balance of zero "cc" dollars (or "cc" sterling).

* In each play you are either a buyer or a seller.

    As a buyer, you choose, from the trading list, the item to be purchased. The LETSplay software selects the seller from the active players, thus making it quite unpredictable what income you will get during the game - it depends on what buyers are spending when you are the chosen seller.

* Your game is complete when you have purchased ONE item from EACH of the ten groups on the list.

    During each game, you may make no more than 12 sales.

    As in the real world, you will have variable and unpredictable earnings from the plays in which you are the seller, and must manage this income, as best you can, to make your budget.

    Your variable income, and the limited amount of conventional "money" in the game will make it unlikely that you can purchase the highest cost item in each % category, but you should make that your goal in the game as otherwise your learning in the process will be limited.

* "fed" $ accounts cannot be overdrawn.

* Your "cc" $ community currency account will be positive (in credit), or negative (in commitment), according to your trading history.

Two things to consider, to make the game work better for you:

    - do try to make the 400 (total of "cc" and"fed", $ or GBP) purchase in each % category of the trading list.

      This is NOT a recommendation for mindless consumerism. Aiming to achieve 10 purchases of 400 ($ or GBP) will demonstrate how the different forms of money do and don't support your efforts. Playing without such a goal will leave a lot not learned.

    - do play as though the cc system is "real"

      When you are trading locally with friends, neighbours and local businesses you wouldn't want to get too far from the middle of the chart until you're got some way up it.

      It's a matter of reputation and prudence - in the real world wise traders will stay out of the red sector of the game chart to maintain a good reputation in the community, and the reasonable reluctance of other traders to accept too much virtual money (to go too blue) will also constrain the divergence of both positive and negative balances. The most effective means of managing system stability is -

        caveat vendor - let the seller beware.

      In this game, where the seller is selected by the software, and has no such choice, this effect is simulated by a progressive increase in the "cc" a player is allowed to issue.