Organizations with an inclusive culture have significantly higher productivity, profitability, employee engagement, customer satisfaction and safety performance. Exclusion due to unconscious bias negatively impacts commercial outcomes. Businesses that promote inclusion are more likely to meet or exceed financial targets, be high performing and achieve better overall results. Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) solutions for the workplace is a relatively young industry. While businesses are actively incorporating diversity and inclusion into their core values, common conventional training used to disseminate the message is missing the mark. Research supports that traditional training focused exclusively on raising awareness has not significantly increased inclusion. To motivate change, you must influence behavior change.

Experiential training is more effective than traditional classroom training when the goal is to reinforce understanding and stimulate behavioral change. It creates a muscle memory of sorts, enabling people to reflect on what they are learning in a deeper, more meaningful way and increases the level of retention. Experiential diversity and inclusion training today is typically comprised of simulations or role-plays that compel participants to pretend or imagine they are someone else. This approach, while engaging, does not allow participants to bring their true authentic self to the experience, limiting the impact to the learner. In addition, these trainings are not fully multi-modal and often rely on only printed and/or visual materials, lessening the appeal to the kinesthetic learner. LLNL created MoonQuake to enable participants to more easily absorb and adopt diversity and inclusion behavioral lessons – and have fun at the same time.


MoonQuake is an innovative experiential learning tool for increasing awareness of inclusion and promoting cooperative behaviors, performance, and productivity. Developed by a multidisciplinary team at LLNL, MoonQuake allows participants to build inclusive behaviors through a unique learning experience based on serious gaming methodology.

MoonQuake is a cooperative tabletop game with an integrated mobile application designed to promote inclusivity and increase collaborative behaviors. Using serious gaming methodology, this immersive and fun multi-modal learning activity raises awareness of unconscious bias, inclusion and exclusion and allows players to increase inclusive behaviors through experiential opportunities that enhance performance and productivity.

Set in the future on a distant moon, MoonQuake challenges players to complete tasks to address a significant objective with many obstacles and problem-solving events. Players must engage as a group in decision making, risk assessment, and task delegation to quickly come up with solutions to save their space settlement from possible destruction. Purposeful game design escalates inclusivity challenges and changes team dynamics as the game progresses. Third-party observations by skilled game facilitators and self and peer real-time digital assessments capture the levels of team and individual inclusiveness using research-based metrics. Facilitated discussion throughout the gameplay and final debrief allows individuals to interact in an authentic way and leads to meaningful discussions on how to be more inclusive and work better with others.


Compared to traditional diversity training, MoonQuake effectively approaches the spectrum of learning by raising awareness and identifying necessary behavior changes to increase inclusion in real-time. It deepens learning with a multi-modal approach that appeals to all the different types of learning styles. MoonQuake allows for custom designed discussions tailored to any organization, offering a simulated hands-on experience that ties gameplay to making a positive impact. Key benefits include:

  • Real Play vs Role Play - No role plays required. Participants bring their true behaviors and natural tendencies which lends to a more robust and authentic experience.
  • Multi-Modal Learning - The combination of physical and digital elements (tactile pieces, video, audio, written text) appeals to all learning styles.
  • Intentional Design - Purposeful game design escalates inclusivity challenges and changes team dynamics as the game progresses.
  • Real-time Feedback - Moderated in-game discussions and digital surveys track a participant’s journey and allow them to self-identify behavior changes to be more effective.
  • Customized Discussions - MoonQuake can be customized to multiple developmental opportunities such as improving communication, collaboration, project management and team alignment.
  • Games are Fun: Built from the ground up to be a fun standalone game that teaches the diversity and inclusion objectives/behaviors versus gamifying an existing diversity and inclusion training class.
Potential Applications

MoonQuake is ready for in-person play for any organization interested in fostering inclusive behaviors, performance, and productivity. MoonQuake can be used as part of current diversity and inclusion solutions being offered by training divisions and diversity and inclusion offices in private and public entities and education institutions. MoonQuake is also well positioned for learning and development companies and management consultancies.

Development Status

MoonQuake is complete and protected by copyright. The game has undergone extensive playtesting within LLNL and with external partners. MoonQuake was officially integrated into LLNL’s institutional leadership development training curriculum in December 2019.

MoonQuake is a winner in this year’s Adobe Government Creativity Awards for its mobile application design:  

Initial reactions to MoonQuake have been extremely positive. A follow-up survey measuring the effectiveness of training inclusive behaviors as well as the subsequent application of behaviors was sent to participants involved in the playtest phase. 40% of participants responded. Participants who took this training 6 months to 1 year ago rated the training extremely high, they both remembered and are actively applying the learning.

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