Play is a core for maintaining a community

Michael Rueger, the designer, and creative director of innovation of the famous German company Ravensburger shared his experiences in design and innovation in the field of games and toys in a specialized virtual meeting.

According to Kanoon General Directorate for Public Relations and International Affairs, at the beginning of the meeting, Rueger introduced the Ravensburger Company and its activities and then discussed the important topic of innovation and its impact on the success of the world's leading brands in the field of games and toys.

Michael Rueger, creative director at Ravensburger Germany, described the company's 130-year history, saying that last year, due to the corona pandemic conditions, sales of toys in the European and American markets multiplied, indicating that humans in times of difficulty, crisis and Hardness come together and play. Game is a nucleus for the preservation of human society.

He has worked in various media since 1989 as a designer or manager (from producing television programs to designing programs for digital media and mobile phones and entertainment).

Rueger, who loves change and is always looking to learn and discover new areas in his activities. "If my job is repetitive and unchanged, I will definitely resign, but most people are afraid of change and run away from it. Innovation also comes from change, so if we do not accept change, we will not innovate" he said.

Following the meeting, Ravensburger's creative director spoke about the concepts of innovation. Rueger considered the existing concepts of innovation to be variable and different, noting that innovation is usually considered part of technology, art, and even design, but that innovation is not necessarily a subset of a particular category. Innovation is like a unicorn, full of magic and creativity. Often people may not understand your innovative designs and give reasons for rejecting your design, such as being expensive, unaffordable, and unfeasible.

Regarding the past of innovation, Rueger went on to point out that in the 1950s there was no such thing as innovation, only building and creating or creativity. In the past, companies were full of old male managers who just took their word for it and gave orders to others. At that time, the customers were only thinking about selling more of their products and did not care if the designs were creative or innovative. The point Rueger made in his speech was to discuss the influence of the employers' spouse on the final outcome of the work. He pointed out that in the past, employers did not have the knowledge to distinguish between good and bad plans, and in most cases, they shared the plan with their spouses and made unscientific decisions.

He added: "But today the discussion of innovation has completely changed and successful companies have creative groups with people with different abilities. The average age of these people is 25 and they all come up with ideas and decisions together. Today, there are many methods and techniques to create innovative designs, and companies use many methods to solve different problems. But where does innovation fit into this world full of technique and method? " Ravensburger launches 300 new products a year in international markets, all of which are both creative and innovative,but it is the market that determines which products will remain in the market for next year." Rueger said.

Rueger continued his speech; Ravensburger currently uses a combination of methods to achieve innovation, but more importantly, audience research means that before you start designing, ask people what problems and concerns they have in their lives and how they think problems should be solved. Seeing people and their way of life teaches us a lot and has a great impact on design.

Following the meeting, Michael Rueger noted that in the future, innovation will be achieved from information and context. This means that in the future, the more information we have from the audience, society, etc., our project will be more successful in the market. To analyze whether a product, from a book to a board game and a toy, has the hallmarks of innovation, Ravensburger's creative director draws a triangle centered on the target audience, with sides that are new, familiar, and magical. Whenever you want to explore the innovation aspects of a product, consider it with this example.

In the final part of the meeting, Michael Rueger answered the questions of the participants and young ideators present. In response to a question from one of the ideators who asked Rueger, "Emerging countries in the field of toy design and production are constantly comparing themselves with prominent foreign brands and trying to design in line with them." "What do you think about this?" He said: Comparing yourself with old and prominent brands in the market is a very wrong thing to do and I simply say do not do it! Because comparison can lead to copy, you will no longer have a creative and innovative design. So rely on your capabilities and before you do anything, analyze your audience from all angles. In response to another question about how to predict the success of projects that have not yet entered the market, Michael Rueger answered: "Before a product enters the market, we consult with our market and sales experts around the world and ask them to tell us their capacity to sell the product. Then, based on the information obtained, we determine the production numbers and the consumer price of that product."

In this meeting which has held on Saturday, May 29, 2021, organized by the General Administration of Creative Entertainment and Computer Games of Institute for the Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults (Kanoon), Aidin Mahdi-Zadeh,secretary of the 4th IdeaAzad Toy Event, stressed the importance of holding such meetings.

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