[2/3] Host a Beer Game Live or Remote
The below article details the main steps required to actually host a session live or remotely.
If you haven't already, I suggest you first read the article Prepare a Beer Game session to help you setup your games before the actual session hosting explained below.
We also provide slides to help you onboard participants, to adjusted or integrated into your own desk:
>> Download our Participants Onboarding slides <<
In this article:
Remote or Live Hosting Configuration
Our Beer Game is used every day in all kinds of setups: in-presence, remotely or in a hybrid setting. All configurations work quite well, simply choose one or the other depending on either the participants are based at the same site or not.
If you are playing remotely, schedule a meeting using your classical video-conferencing software (ex: MS Teams, Zoom, Google Meet, Webex, etc.). The participants will keep the video-conference window open on their computer, and access the game on another web-browser window.
When playing in presence, the participants should have their laptop with them, or alternatively a smartphone (our beer game can be played in any phone web browser). You can simply assign players into teams based on the position they are in the room.
Step 1: Explain the rules and gameplay
A good way to onboard the participants and explain the rules is to show a short game using screen sharing. You can create a demo game and connect as one of the participants randomly. Then, send one or two orders describing what you are doing, to help the participants get familiar and confident with the interface.
In addition, once the participants connect to a game, they will see several onboarding slides guiding them through the rules of the game.
You can also use our Participants Onboarding slides provided at the top of this article.
Step 2: Send the links to the participants
If you are hosting the session for a big crowd (more than 30 persons), or if you don't mind about the teams composition, simply share your instructor page link inside the chat. It lists all your games publicly. From there, the participants can select a game or join randomly one of the available positions.
If you one more granular control on the teams/roles, or if you are hosting the game for a smaller crowd, you may s hare links to individual games or individual roles.
When the participants connect, let them read quickly the onboarding slides (it takes around 2 minutes). This leaves the time for everyone to connect. Once all the participants are connected to a game, you can prompt them to start ordering!
Step 3: Follow-up the advancement
From your instructor Dashboard, you can quickly see a recap of the players connected, who has sent its order and the current week.
When the games are ongoing select them in your Dashboard to show a few helpful functions :
Master the games duration using the Timer:
Select the games and click on "Start Timer". From then on, the players will only have 1 minute to decide how much to order every week. If one or several of them haven't sent their order, the computer orders for them, and the game advances to the next week (and the 1-minute timer starts again).
You can change the duration of the timer inside a game's setting to 1min30sec, 2min or 2min30sec. You can also decide to automatically start the timer from a given week, for the participants to get comfortable with the interface before their decision-making time is limited.
Send admin message:
Click on "Send Message" to send a message to several players at once, or filter on specific games/roles. Use this feature to distribute a message to specific participants/roles, for example asking them to order. It complements the scheduled messages you can prepare inside the game configuration, which are more meant to support the game narrative.
Set a game as Finished:
Click on the button "Finish Game" to end a game even if it hasn't reached its final week. You may use this function in case the game are taking a bit too long, or to reach the debriefing pages prematurely.
Step 4: End of the round
Once all the games of the round are finished, it is time to take over. As an instructor, you can share your screen to compare the various teams using the "Analysis tab" in your Dashboard.
You may focus on the results of one or two supply-chain and discuss with the players how they felt.
Read all about How to perform a debriefing on the dedicated article:
Perform a Successful Beer Game Debrief
Once you have performed the first round debriefing, it's then time to direct the participants to the second round, if you have planned one. For each following round, simply repeat the steps Share Links > Host games > Debrief.