My brand-spanking-new employer, Improving Enterprises, had a guest speaker yesterday. Luke Hohmann of Enthiosys led us through one of their latest Innovation Games (he's written a book by that same title), called Buy a Feature. You can try it free right now while it's in beta.
These games are particularly fascinating to anyone who's ever been involved in developing a product. Based on years of market research, including the contributions of data-munching, big-forehead university types, they serve to get people involved in the kind of face-to-face interaction that often goes missing in today's business processes.
Of course normally the exercises are run in person -- usually by a trained facilitator -- but the web version of Buy a Feature was created at the behest of a rather large company whose sheer numbers and geographic distribution made such a meeting less than feasible. The result is a peek into the process for those of us who had heretofore never been exposed to such creative genius.
Bear in mind that the current implementation is a bit rough, but it does give a taste of the kind of collaboration that the game encourages.