The Kumara Challenge

The Kumara Challenge is the first trustworthy Flight Simulator for executives and board members. This game-based multimedia experience triggers authentic behavior. This leadership assessment allows candidates to perform under pressure within the dynamics of a team, an organization and the outside world. Doing so, it maps out and quantifies the most important leadership qualities of the 21st century.

Game Description 
TEN Executive Assessments (TENEA) is an expert on selection and development challenges for leaders at the highest level. Assessments play an essential role in this. However, traditional assessments often have no connection to reality and are often outdated.Innovative methods often lack a scientific basis. They do not measure what matters: the behavior of a leader in the complex of a stressful daily reality. We do.

The assignment for &ranj was to create an exciting, challenging and memorable ‘mixed reality’ experience. The aim was to collect a rich set of data and observable behavior in order to map the core qualities of candidates reliably. Ultimately, the solution should be scalable on an international level. With 20 years experience from game development and valid insights on assessment methodologies, we have developed a revolutionary, 3-hour and immersive experience in close collaboration with our clients (two occupational and organizational psychologists and our in-house neuroscientist).

In this new assessment method, candidates are immersed in an exciting and challenging ‘mixed reality’ experience. They end up in a realistic, on location setting, in which they experience their first working day as CEO for Kumara Corporation. The player has to make decisions on various realistic issues and dilemmas under constant time pressure. The player must build relationships, figure out who can and cannot be trusted, respond to continuously changing information and deal with information overload.

The combination of different interactive channels, the credible story and believable characters, makes it so realistic that candidates forget that they are in an assessment. Integrated channels include: audio and video clips from the Malemo archipelago, websites, voicemail, email, text chat, live video conferencing and newsreels from Malemo.

The game is played on a custom desktop environment, mobile phone, physical file and a TV screen. During the entire assessment, all actions and decisions are registered and related multiple times to 10 core qualities such as vision, agility, integrity, brainpower and execution power. This registers 150 measuring points. At strategic moments, live role-playing moments between an assessment psychologist and the candidate are seamlessly integrated into the storyline. Finally, the candidate has to present his or her future vision to the shareholders in a live video conference, in which the assessment psychologist directs and leads the meeting.

The storyline of the game is powered by our interactive narrative engine. This engine controls the dialogue with the in-game characters, keeps track of progress in the players agenda, or sends text messages. But also reacts to the choices the player makes and influences the course of the story. This creates a true simulation.

While playing the game, the player is confronted with several dilemmas, which lead to a measurement on one of the ten qualities that are central to the assessment. These measurements are registered in the assessment layer of the front-end and visualized for the assessment psychologist in a secure portal environment. In this, the assessor can see the scores that have been registered, add scores manual, keep track of the player’s progress, see at what time the role plays with an assessment psychologist are planned and start a video conference call with the player.

After the assessment, the report is also drawn up digitally in this portal from various data sources. In-game data as well as own observations and input from additional tests that the candidate makes in the run-up to the assessment day, thus lead to a tailor-made interactive report. The report is then made digitally available to the candidate in the customer environment and, after the candidate’s permission, shared with the client of the assessment.


Studio: &ranj
Release date: 26 October, 2020
Platform: Custom set-up of desktop with client application. Connected to a large format TV screen with a continuous news channel.

Entry for: Best Innovation, Best Applied Game

Nominated for: Best Applied Game

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