Office Shots

Educating natural history museum visitors on the new geological era

Office Shots is a physical game we developed as part of a research funded by Philips Healthcare. This game aims at enabling young professionals to improve their sleep quality at nighttime by regaining control over their caffeine intake during the day.

Game Designer
Research Lead
Project Manager
01.2019 - 05.2019
Jeffrey Chou
Xiangzhu Chen

Game Anatomy

All design components for the game

Overall, the goal of the game is to help young professionals who are habituated into consuming large amount of coffee establish a relationship with coffee where they maintain their energy level throughout the work day with the help of coffee but don't sacrifice their sleep time at night.

Since there are individual differences between how each person uses coffee, the game does not attempt to dictate a one-size-fits-all solution. Instead, it enables self discovery so that players find out about the strategies that work best for them.

Key Game Mechanisms

1. Multi-player game sparks social interactions

Each player receives a game kit. At the start of each day, players need to get together to collectively determine the coffee quota they have available as a group. Naturally, this leads to negotiation or collaboration.

Game kit

2. Limited resources nudge players to strategize and experiment

We set a loose constraint on the number of "caffeine shots" a player could consume on a daily basis. Based on players' progress in the game play, they may have different daily quotas, which come in the form of coffee tokens. Players can use the coffee tokens to redeem a shot of coffee from the shared coffee machine. When the group convenes, they roll 2 dice to determine who'll distribute the tokens to the group.

When the game starts, each player also receives a set number of challenge tokens, which can be used towards challenging other players to earn additional coffee tokens.

Physical coffee token

Coffee tokens

Physical challenge tokens

Challenge tokens

Because there is an upper-bound for how much coffee one could use on a daily basis, players have to be more intentional about when they take coffee. This encourages players to experiment with new patterns and discover what works best for them.

3. Externalization aids self-discovery

Players can note down their energy levels and thoughts on the record sheet that came with the game kit. This creates a paper trail of trackers that can help players visualize their pattern of caffeine consumption.

4. Mini games add to entertainment and small energy boosts

In any time of the game play, players can challenge their coworkers to engage in one of the three mini games in order to earn coffee tokens.

We built in these mini games based on techniques that help combat occasional energy dip. In participating in these mini games, players can boost their energy level by practicing the techniques in addition to getting stimulated from competition. Afterwards, they may find that they don't have as strong of a need for coffee and decide to redeem it at a later point. This helps players stay away from consuming coffee they don't necessarily need.

Cards for mini games

View the full rule book here.


Design for Healthy Sleep (CHI 2020)

Juliet Pusateri, Judith Leng, Qian Wang, Xiangzhu Chen, and Jessica Hammer. 2020. Designing Games for Healthy Sleep. Proceedings of the 2020 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. Association for Computing Machinery, New York, NY, USA, 1–13. DOI:

Toward a Design Theory of Sleepy Games (CHI Play 2019)

Juliet Pusateri, Judith Leng, Jessica Timczyk, Xiangzhu Chen, Qian Wang, Khushi Shah, Tithi Jasani, and Jessica Hammer. 2019. Toward a Design Theory of Sleepy Games. In Extended Abstracts of the Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play Companion Extended Abstracts (CHI PLAY '19 Extended Abstracts). Association for Computing Machinery, New York, NY, USA, 631–638. DOI:

To get a glimpse into our pitch to Philips, check out our presentation deck here.