Create Universal Wonder

There’s a neat looking video game called SPORE due out this summer (7 Sept) by game designer Will Wright. It’s a simulation game – sort of like the Sims or SimCity… But the level of game play and user customization goes beyond pretty much anything that’s come before it.

The website describes…

“Spore, the highly anticipated game from the creators of The Sims™, gives players their own personal universe in a box. Create and evolve life, establish tribes, build civilizations, sculpt entire worlds and explore a universe created by other gamers. Spore gives players a wealth of creative tools to customize nearly every aspect of their universe: creatures, vehicles, buildings, and even UFOs.”

The game’s preview trailers and clips look pretty fun.

But that’s not why I’m writing this. While viewing a clip featuring one of SPORE’s game designers… I noticed their mission statement “CREATE UNIVERSAL WONDER” on the wall behind one of the game designers.

Create Universal Wonder

[click for larger image]

Huh… “create universal wonder” is a pretty powerful statement. I then noticed that they’d written descriptions under each word – so that Create, Universal, and Wonder had modifiers.

Using advanced techniques* developed by the Idea Sandbox Institute I was able to decipher the notes…

Create
Innovative + new
Adds to Culture
Universal
Generate word of mouth
Exchange shared experiences
Wonder
Inquire not inform
Provoke Curiosity

I love when a company extends their mission statement and breaks it down into smaller chunks. While the statement “create universal wonder” seems pretty specific, the three words – create, universal, and wonder – are too broad to be meaningful and need further definition.

Anyone working on the SPORE team should have a pretty good sense what they’re trying to accomplish.

Do you have this same discipline at your business? Do the words you use to describe what you’re trying to do come across clear and simple?

*The techniques mostly consisted of squinting and viewing frames of the clip one at a time.