Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Exploring Yucata as a teaching tool

A friend of mine recently asked me about board gaming online. He’s an educator and is hoping to use board games as a one more item in his tool box for teaching online.

I recommended Yucata to him for a number of reasons. It’s free. It has a nice selection of games. And, unlike many sites like Steam or the Apple Game Center, since you don’t have to buy individual games, everyone has access to the same library of games. Plus, some of his students are German so being a German website with a German language option was also a plus for Yucata.

One downside is that Yucata doesn’t have a lot of games for larger groups. Two-to-four players is one of its strengths. Looking for a easy-to-teach game that can handle at least five players led to limited to options. I suggested he and I play a game of Claim It live so he could try the site out.

(In retrospect, I should have suggested Las Vegas. That probably would have suited his needs better and supported one more player. In my defense, I play Claim It a lot more)

So we sat down and logged onto Yucata and Zoom at the same time so we could talk our way through a game. I will say that explaining a game is a lot easier when you can actually pick up pieces and show folks how moves work. That said, we had a good time and he had a much better idea how to use Yucata by the time we were done.

It’s fun to get in a game with a friend but helping them out is a big deal.

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