Baseball game

Hey Heroes,

I'm in the brainstorming stages for a course teaching salespeople product specs with a baseball theme.  The baseball theme was already decided for me so now I am working on ideas for a game that quizzes the salespeople on the product specs and typical customer questions.  I'm just getting started but here's what I am thinking so far.  Would love to hear your ideas.

So far I am thinking along the lines of some kind of format where a quiz question is "pitched" to the salesperson and if they get a question right they advance to first base.  If they get it wrong it's a ground out or fly out and they have one out against them.  If they get 3 outs (wrong questions) they have to start over.  Their goal is to get as many "runs" as possible before getting 3 outs.

At this point I need some ideas to add some "flavor" to the game and ideas for how to deal with navigation, branching, and scoring which could turn out to be complicated.  Thanks in advance for any and all ideas you may have.

7 Replies
James Brown

I'm wondering if you shouldn't do something more in the lines of a home run derby as opposed to a game where your questions could be grouped by pitches thrown at the salesrep. I.e. a fastball, a slider, or a curve ball. Depending on how accurately they hit the question they either it's a grounder, popup, or a fly to left, center, or right field with the best result being a home run.

Of course another approach would be a team match-ups where the various levels of the exercise are based off teams. You first match them up with say the Seattle Mariners. Then as they answer questions it counts as a run for either you or the opposing team. If they miss too many questions, they loose and until they beat that team, they cannot progress on to the next game. You could also say if they get say 80% right they move on but instead of going onto the next team in the list they go on to the 2nd team in the list. If they get all the questions correct they may play the third team in the list with the final goal of making it to the world series where they must play against the New York Yankees.  Top the game off with an incentive. Everyone who completes the training will be put into a drawing for tickets to a real baseball game in your area of the country. That gives the sales reps a very big incentive to play.

Joe Deegan

Thanks for the ideas James! Now you've got my wheels turning with trying to make it to the world series.  A large percentage of the workforce who will be completing this class are in the San Francisco Bay Area so the World Series is fresh in everyone's minds.  Can't wait to see what other ideas come up.

Joe Deegan

I only have 2 weeks but if there's time I would love to have 1 and 2 player versions.  I need to have a 1 player version in case there is not somebody else available to play with and so that the individual receives credit for completing it.  Once I nail down the game structure I may be able to work it into a 2 player version.

Shelly Cook

This is the first thing that came to mind... not sure if it'll jive with what are thinking but here's a few ideas:

  • Instead of "scoring", you may be able to use quizmaker to calculate a batting average - such as a scenario that when the learner selects the best answer, they are batting a 1000.
  • Or instead of "scoring", you could track Runs, Hits and Errors, Strikeouts, etc.
  • You could have a RBI stat - especially in a sales scenario where they could earn a RBI by upselling a product or service.
  • Basic level training could be the minor league, Mid level training could be the major league and Advance training could be the pros so as the learner moves through the content they get drafted/promoted up to the next level.
  • Your narrator could be a "coach" which gives tips and advice to a new player on the team.
  • If you like to add in a little cheese, you could use sound effects when they answer a question - like the crack of a bat and a roaring crowd or the sound of a swing and a miss for incorrect answers.

I love courses where you (and the learner) can have a little fun!  Good Luck!

Joe Deegan

Thanks for the ideas!  I'm heading in the direction of a combination of ideas.  Shelly, great minds think alike.  Part of this course that I didn't bring up is "Spring Training" where they are trying to make the team narrated by "The Coach" like you suggested.  I think this game may turn into a batting practice session with coach as their final chance to make the team.  If they are going to impress coach and make the team they will need to get a certain amount of hits (right answers) from the pitches (questions).  Now I need to work out the graphics and make it happen. Thanks again for the help.

David Anderson

Hey Joe,

Depending on how literal the baseball metaphor needs to be, maybe this silly idea could work:

 

First, a simple instructional strategy could look like:

 

  • Presentation– info you directly give your learners or info they explore on their own
  • Practice– learners practice what they've learned through scenarios, quizzes, interactions, etc
  • Evaluation– evaluate what they know, don't know and need to practice

Consider that baseball – like most sports – follows a similar practice-to-game model:

 

  • Coaching– “listen up team, this is what you need to know about sliding”
  • Practice– “fall in line team, you’re practicing slides”
  • Games–“it’s the bottom of the 1st with 2 outs. You have a runner on 3rd…”

Something along those lines. Anyway, players never practice all the plays in one session – they space things out. Each chapter or inning is where learners practice a specific area of product knowledge.

 

Now you can take your ID model and re-frame it around a baseball metaphor that follows a practice-to-game flow:

Inning 1: Product XSpec 1

 

  • Coaching (here’s where you give your players (learners) the info on Product X Spec 1 or they discover it using something like RSI, Usual Suspects or other rapid ID model.
  • Practice – now your players get to practice whatyou just told them. Include appropriate coaching (feedback) and maybe some lower-performing players have to endure two-a-days where they repeat a practice session.
  • Game time – This is it! Throw them into the game and make them earn it. Second Place means first loser. Okay, maybe nothing that competitive, but salespeople like challenges so make it challenging.

Inning 2: Product XSpec 2

 

  • Rinse and repeat

Playoffs – Final Assessment!

 

Visual Design:

Mindmap the project to get the look and feel. Or, we can doit as an activity here in the community