Pilot case

How to Destroy a Startup – IP Game

Learning intellectual property law by destroying a thriving startup.

Pilot leader

Yulia Guseva

Schools

School of Science

Timeline

2017

Overview

In “How To Destroy A Startup”, players will learn about the complex Intellectual Property safeguards required to sustain a company by literally undoing those safeguards. Each aspect of the company’s legal destruction will be accompanied by a humorous and exaggerated outcome that will make the lessons even more memorable.

In “How To Destroy A Startup” players play as attorney Kyle Biscuit, who has been hired as a consultant by Mr. Morticai, the founder of a new hardware startup. What Mr. Morticai doesn’t realize, however, is that Kyle Biscuit’s father and he have a history. Several years ago, they founded a business together, but after the business became successful, Mr. Morticai used underhanded legal maneuverings to push Kyle’s father out of the business. Now, under the guise of helping, Kyle Biscuit has joined the startup with one intention – to get revenge by destroying it. He will use his legal expertise to most efficiently destroy the company, doing everything from giving away copyright on the company’s product, infringing on an existing company’s logo, and nullifying employee NDAs and non-compete agreements so employees can leak company secrets and start their own competing businesses.

Players will gather information about the company and business world by accessing an in-game computer, and about IP law by accessing an in-game law book. They will then use that information to change legal documents such that the company is in violation of IP best practices. While seeking out information to undermine various IP, the player will learn more about the details of IP law.

The game contains four main quests, which will teach trademarks, employee contracts, patents, and copyright.

Contact Yulia Guseva if you want to learn more about the game or incorporate it in your teaching.

Reflection

We have received positive feedback from students. They were especially happy that they can learn about Intellectual Property (which is quite “dry”) in a fun and memorable way.

The game is now available in both English and Finnish.

People

Yulia Guseva
School of Science, Department of Industrial Engineering and Management
Pilot leader

Timo Nyberg
Executive Producer

Jesse Barksdale
Writer, Designer, Artist

Lassi Vapaakallio
Programmer, Designer

Philippe Pépin
Legal Consultant

Denis Zlobin
Sound Designer


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