A game developed by UW–Madison alums Max Puchalsky and Kyle Herrera with their artist collective, Solarpunk Surf Club, was honored at this year’s 2023 Games for Change Awards. Puchalsky and Herrera both earned their MFA degrees from the School of Education’s Art Department in 2020.

Their game, Solarpunk Futures, received the award for Best Board or Tabletop Game for Impact. This award recognizes physical tabletop games that raise awareness, foster meaningful change, and engage players around learning objectives or specific social issues.

Solarpunk Futures is an artist’s game for collaborative utopian visioning, working in (and against) the conventions of tabletop role-playing. Players use backcasting and modified consensus to collectively “remember” the stories of how their ancestors built a social ecological utopia.