WeQu Kickstarter Preview – An Interactive Personality Test

WeQu, created by Oh Kwon, Ted Munter and Hari Sreenevaslu, is described as “a new, revolutionary and interactive card game and app designed to bring friends, family, coworkers, and acquaintances closer together through positive communication”.  

wequ

“WeQu prompts players to learn more about each other through intriguing discussion that can break the ice on the most tense and awkward of conversations,” said Oh Kwon, Co-Founder and Owner of WeQu. “As someone who emigrated from another country to the Netherlands, I know the struggles that come with language, social, and custom barriers. WeQu helps individuals focus on what really matters when it comes to conversing.”

The game is on Kickstarter right now and Andrew and I got a chance to check out a preview copy, sent to us by the designers.

(That said – Kickstarter Prototype Alert!!! – None of these components are necessarily final!)

wequ2

jessasmJess: We’ve known each other for over 15 years. I wonder what we could possible learn about each other?

andrewasm Andrew: Let’s play and find out!

WeQu uses a very simple set of cards to spark conversations. You get 3 question cards, a handful of characteristics, and conclusion cards. For people who are not familiar to one another, you play a modified version of the game that only uses 1 question card.

wequ3
That last one definitely isn’t a trap.

The game also comes with a board. It shows you how to arrange the cards as you play,  but, honestly, I found it largely unnecessary. If you plan to take the game along with you to a meeting or date, then the pack of cards fits neatly in a pocket and is all you really need to play.

DSC_0025

To play WeQu, one player will draw two characteristic cards and choose which of the two cards best describes the other player. These characteristics are 32 essential qualities based on the philosophy of Aristotle’s 11 virtues. The cards include things like emotional intelligence, self management, communication, problem solving, and leadership. According to the Kickstarter, players can take turns drawing cards for each other. In the version we played, player 1 continues drawing cards and choosing between them to form piles until the deck is empty. As you select cards, you are encouraged to give reasons why you chose or discarded cards.

jessasmJess: When I first looked at this game, I thought it wasn’t going to be very effective. I mean, if you don’t know a person at all and you try to play the game, you cannot make these decisions based on anything but a shallow estimation. As we played though, Andrew pointed out an important fact: It did start conversations.

From the KS page - the eventual app
From the KS page – the eventual app

andrewasm Andrew: While Jess and I know each other very well and the cards we chose for each other were not really surprising, they did get us talking and that it the point of the game; to open channels of communication. In that way it succeeds.

The game can be continued with the 2 other question cards, which further divide the piles into traits you like about the other person and traits you wish they would work on. You can also use the conclusion cards to select a few traits to celebrate or work on.

wequ4

In the end you can tally up your score to see the different aspects of your personality as seen through another persons perspective. The Kickstarter version will have an app that helps keep track and analyze your results, but it was not available yet for us to try.

 jessasmJess: WeQu is an interesting tool for learning about yourself and others, but it really doesn’t feel much like a game. There are no points to score, or puzzle to solve, or meeple to move. That said it is a very cool way to create conversations that might be hard to have either because you don’t know much about someone or because you are having a hard time communicating for some reason. I could see coworkers using this enhance evaluations or couple using this to defuse an argument and promote a healthy discussion.

andrewasmAndrew:  It’s sort of an odd little thing.  Like you say, not really a ‘game’, but more of an interactive personality test…which, I believe, is actually one of their slogans.  I don’t know where this would fit in a gamer’s library, but it does make an interesting conversation-starter, and ultimately, that’s a good thing.

You can learn more and donate to the Kickstarter campaign for WeQu and app on the WeQu Kickstarter campaign page.

(This preview was done with a prototype sent to us by the developer.  Our opinions were not influenced by their generosity)

Related Post

3 comments

  1. Thank you for reviewing Jessy and Andrew! Glad to see that WeQu promotes good conversation between the two of you.

    Pointing out the differences you’ve mentioned between the prototype you’ve tested and the version that backers can pledge for:
    – Our final product will be much more improved, with 50 cards (current prototype has 30 cards) and introducing 9 different prompting cards (question cards).
    – Prompting cards are added for players who do not know each other very well, yet allowing them to break the ice and start a conversation!

    As you said the game board is not a must-have for a WeQu interaction between two, but it sets a good atmosphere for workshop purposes with several people, which we have tested at different companies successfully (see our blog for experience reports).

  2. A very interesting statement: “WeQu is an interesting tool for learning about yourself and others, but it really doesn’t feel much like a game. There are no points to score, or puzzle to solve, or meeple to move.”

    I have been involved in game design for many years and did explicit research on the topic: “what is a game” or what are the ingredients that make a game. More insights to that can be found on this link: http://www.ellisinwonderland.nl/who-says-what-are-games-what-are-game-elements-gamemechanics-and-gameplay/

    I also played with WeQu and was similarly wondering to whether it is “just” a tool or a game. I would like to see the state of play in which a game plays a role a bit more open and abstract as in Johan Huizinga’s “magic circle as a state in which the player is bound by a make-believe barrier created by the game” In WeQu is a beginning and an end, players commit to certain rules when they start to play, tools are provided, a safe context is created to have a conversation which allows you to be more open and learn a lot from the others and yourself.. all in all I am not yet convinced that i was not playing a game when I played WeQu, and would love to hear more opinions on this topic.

    1. Well, I think first it is important to say what I hope is obvious – whether or not something is a ‘game’ is not a categorization of quality, value, or worth. We had a good experience with WeQu, that was without question. However, our instinctive definition of ‘game’ was strained slightly by it.

      Which, of course, makes us examine that definition. Games come in all shapes and sizes and forms. Some folks think that a game needs points or dice or meeples to be a ‘game’, and despite what Jess said during the course of our review, we aren’t necessarily those folks. I think Tales of the Arabian Nights by Z-Man is a game, though the choices made in it are basically arbitrary and we almost never actually play until there is a winner (because the victory conditions tend to be capricious and random and almost impossible to pursue intentionally). Tales is a hugely entertaining experience. It has points and stats and a board and choices and dice and variable player powers. There can be a winner. So, by most standards, it’s a game, right? But in the thick of it, laughing like mad at the ridiculous things that happen to characters, it can still feel like it lacks a directed focus, like the winner and losers are irrelevant, and somehow that makes it less of a ‘game’ to me. And to be clear, I love it.

      So what makes a ‘game’? Honestly, that’s a good question, one I am still mulling over. But I just wanted to reiterate that whether or not something is a ‘game’ is a separate measurement entirely than whether we enjoyed engaging it, whether it was well-made or not, and whether we would recommend others experience it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *