Depletion is a game with natural rules that reinforces
central concepts of reaction rate theory through simulation. It is designed
as a supplement to classroom instruction in introductory chemistry. The
game’s rules simulate some characteristics of chemical reactions. The game
board depicts a free energy landscape with five hills that represent the activation
free energies of five sequential chemical reactions. Players buy reactants and
guide them through the reactions, choosing whether or not to increase the
chance of a successful reaction by buying additional heat or some catalyst.
Players earn money when a reaction is successfully completed. At the end
of the game, the player with the most money wins. A more complete discussion
of this game has been published in the Journal of Chemical Education 79,
Permission is given to reproduce the game from this site for classroom use only.
The files are in Adobe's PDF format.
(The free Acrobat Reader and PDFViewer browser plug-in are available, for Mac, PC, and Unix platforms, from Adobe.)
Depletion game rules
Depletion game board
You need both to play!
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