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Subject: thoughts on Freedom: the underground railroad rss

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may-prigent Ffran
France
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Just wondering what your thoughts are on this game. How weighty is it ? Does it do justice do the theme ( some themes just can't be banalized)..How appropriate would it be for the context of the classroom ? All comments gratefully received. It's a pricey game, so need to make sure it's appropriate. If you have any suggestions of games relating to slavery in the US, that would be great. It's an inter-discipline study subject, and I'm studying the cotton fields ( way of life for slaves, music, etc ...)
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Tim Tix
Germany
Hamburg
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Maybe you rather post this one the game's page?
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Michael Tyree
United States
Dayton
Ohio (OH)
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I think it would be accurate to say it treats the subject with appropriate respect. It is thematic in its portrayal of the various struggles and events surrounding the abolitionist movement in America, and generally informative of some of the major pressures as time progressed and attitudes shifted. Another key point that makes it a successful game design is the choice to make it a co-op with the players joining forces to bring an end to slavery, rather than competing among each other or forcing someone to take the role of a supporter of the system of slavery.

From a more technical perspective, it is also a very well designed game mechanically. Really, very little not to like or respect in this package, and one I would not find out of place in a teaching setting.
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Liam (Away/AFK)
Scotland
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You might want to edit your subject to include a reference to asking for games that tackle this topic.

When you say 'classroom' at which level/age?

I think Freedom: The Underground Railroad is as good as it gets. It is a 2 hour +/- game and is medium weight meaning it probably won't suit most classroom contexts.

For Research:
Take a look at Brenda Brathwaite's work (mostly outside of BGG).

Here's an article I came across:
http://www.aaihs.org/seriously-boardgames-yes-seriously/#sla...
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Renate Cloake
United Kingdom
Worthing
West Sussex
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Its great as a game but it also handles the subject well. The cards and rulebook have a lot of historical information on/in them - it's not necessary to read all the text to play the game, but if you were interested in the subject or wanted to use it as an educational tool there's plenty in it to learn from.

As Liam says, in terms of using it a a classroom tool, it would depend on the age of the class and the time available.
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