Cultural Memory Game

Printable board game to experience the value of remembering past crises to foster community resilience

The Cultural Memory Game was designed and developed in 2018 as part of the project “European Disasters in Urban centres: a Culture Expert Network” within the EU Horizon 2020 Programme. It raises awareness of the role of cultural memory to face adversity. It highlights that learning from the past can shape the present and future of a city. The game makes players participate in a decision-making process in an uncertain environment. In this scenario, pieces of past catastrophic events are scattered around a fictitious city, offering prompts to those who care to pay attention to them. During this experience, players become sensitised to these past events and learn how to read them.

Photos from the official website the game

When to play

Learning how historical commoners tackled challenges can be useful to solve current problems. This game (1-2 hours) can be useful to experience the relevance of gathering knowledge of the past. It is not focused on the commons but on the impact of natural disasters to the city. However, we suggest to play the game as a workshop to introduce future activities related to historical expeditions in your city. Participants will have the opportunity to get to know each other and be motivated to learn from the past of the city.

Commons-related features

  • Broadcast a messageThe game disseminates a message linked to the commons (for example, the importance of participatory design of the city).
  • Feel sense of communityThe game lets participants feel part of a group with shared interests and grow the sense of community.

Best contexts to play

  • Community participation activityThe game can be a tool to involve people in communitarian and participation activities.
  • Knowledge institution workshop or classThe game can be played in a university class or during a summer course to delve into different aspects of the commons. 
  • Decision-making activityThe game can guide participant decision-making in a variety of contexts, for example by facilitating a voting or consent process.


  • Interactive/communalThe game incites a continuous exchange of information, ideas or experiences between the players. The game play is really ‘done together’. 
  • ExplorativeThe game lets you experience alternative worlds.
  • ChallengingThe game demands a considerable effort (e.g. to act under time pressure) to succeed.

How to obtain

You can download it for free. 

Check the website of the game