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Build your movement. Beat the system. A board game about people winning together—even when the cards are stacked against us.
Build your movement. Beat the system. A board game about people winning together—even when the cards are stacked against us.
Build your movement. Beat the system. A board game about people winning together—even when the cards are stacked against us.
740 backers pledged $56,180 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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Rise Up: The Game of People and Power

$56,180

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Announcement: We made it! Thank you so much everyone for your support!

Did you miss the Kickstarter? You can pre-order/order Rise Up here.

Thanks again. We’re so excited to get you this game about fighting for what you believe in.

 

Lead a march of thousands of people. Write a protest song that goes viral. Fight for what you believe in. Rise Up is a cooperative board game about building people power and taking on oppressive systems to create change. It’s ethically manufactured and made by the creators of Co-opoly: The Game of Cooperatives.

In each game of Rise Up, players take creative actions to fight for victory. Everyone wins or loses together. The game weaves a story about your movement, which can either be based in reality (like stopping an oil pipeline) or fictional (like fighting for dragon rights). But “the System” is hard at work too, maneuvering to crush your movement through tactics like setting up surveillance, making arrests, or causing infighting.

 

 

 

We live in an era that’s filled with opportunities to engage more people in movements for social justice. Rise Up is an entertaining way to bring people together, activate our imaginations, and inspire dialogue about the change we need to create a more just, healthy world. Players have fun while also discovering activist strategies and tactics in an exciting, participatory setting. There’s a deep history of board games being used for social justice struggles, even if that history is not well known. We wish to continue that history.

 

 

A great choice for game nights with friends and family, Rise Up is an alternative to many mainstream board games that feature themes of conquest, exploitation, and warfare. It’s a strategy game that can only be won through player collaboration.

And we’ve done something innovative: just flip the board over, and you’ll be able to play Rise Up Simplified, a version that’s quicker to learn and that has simpler rules. Rise Up Simplified is appropriate for younger kids and people who have less experience with games. It can be played with co-workers, in workshops, trainings, after hours at conferences or retreats, and in community organizing settings where time is of the essence. 

 

 

At the start of each game, players come up with a movement they want to create. It can be serious or silly. (Such as “fighting for a living wage” or “free pizza for everyone.") Then the game naturally teases out the story of your movement as you go. Players have to gain supporters in order to play Movement Cards like “We organize a massive march!”, “General strike,” “Building strong communities,” and “Someone writes a protest song.” These cards allow players to build their movement, take on the System, and help their fellow players gain supporters and resources.

The goal is to grow your movement power in different places across the board. But watch out, because the System is fighting back. With cards like “Smear campaign against our movement” or “Rising wave of conservatism”, the System will make you lose supporters and resources while it cements its own power.

Players lose if they run out of supporters or if the System gains too many victories. Players win if they score more victories than the System.

Rise Up also has unique cooperative game mechanics that keep players interested and engaged during the whole game, even when it’s not their turn.

Want an in-depth overview of Rise Up’s game rules? Read our update here!

 

 

 

 

 

A Rise Up game test in Oakland
A Rise Up game test in Oakland

 

 

 

 

Players making collaborative decisions
Players making collaborative decisions

 

We’re dedicated to manufacturing Rise Up in an ethical way. It will be produced in the United States, and nearly 100% of the money spent on the manufacturing will go to a worker-owned company using environmentally friendly resources whenever possible. This is groundbreaking for board games—as far as we know, it has never been done before for a game of this scale or scope. Read more about our ethical manufacturing process here!

 

Ross of Community Printers, Rise Up's manufacturer, giving a tour of their facility
Ross of Community Printers, Rise Up's manufacturer, giving a tour of their facility

 

All of our backer rewards are on the right column on this page. (Or, if you're on mobile, at the top of the screen, click the "Rewards" tab.) These are different levels of benefits you can receive for making a pledge to the Rise Up campaign. These range from stickers, to posters, the game itself, custom resources, and more.  To choose one of the backer levels, simply click the pledge box of your choice.

If all you want is the game, choose the $49 level. Please send us a message if you have any questions!

Do you want to give Rise Up as a holiday gift? The game won’t be printed until early 2017, but if you back the project, we’ll provide you with a certificate for the holidays that will let your giftee know their game will be shipped to them when Rise Up is released!

 

If we reach our base goal of $35,000, we will be able to manufacture Rise Up. After that, the below “stretch goals” are further goals that will allow us to do even more with the game. This ranges from developing more expansion packs to creating a Spanish version of the game. Check them out!

 If we're fortunate enough to reach this level, we'll release more goals!

An early version of Rise Up being played
An early version of Rise Up being played

 

Rise Up is created and published by the TESA Collective (The Toolbox for Education and Social Action), a worker-owned cooperative specializing in educational programs, social justice games, and movement-building tools. We are the makers of Co-opoly: The Game of Cooperatives, a game of skill and solidarity for the growing co-op movement, as well as Loud & Proud, a fast-paced social justice word association game.

Co-opoly has been played in over thirty countries and by tens of thousands of people, in homes, community centers, organizing spaces, classrooms, universities, and beyond. The game has been used for fun game nights as well as education and advocacy for the cooperative movement.

TESA’s members have developed workshops, educational programs, games, and resources for cooperatives and social justice organizations. We have all been involved in community organizing and movement building within student organizations, labor and workers’ rights groups, anti-war struggles, and more.

 

Graphic Designer: Molly McLeod. Molly McLeod is a designer, artist, and educator based in Oakland, California. She helps nonprofits and organizations working toward social justice communicate more effectively and design awesome things. TESA previously worked with Molly on the graphic design of Co-opoly: The Game of Cooperatives, and we’re thrilled to be collaborating with her again.

Artist: Design Action Collective. We’re excited to team up with Design Action Collective, a social justice, worker-owned, and union design and visual communications studio based in Oakland, California. Design Action is making beautiful, custom art for Rise Up’s cards, board, and box. Innosanto Nagara is bottom-lining the illustration work. He is the author and illustrator of the children’s books A is for Activist, Counting on Community, and the upcoming My Night in the Planetarium.

Printer: Community Printers. Since 1977, Community Printers have been engaged in high-quality commercial printing. They are also a worker-owned cooperative. They are especially proud of their history of community involvement, social activism, and commitment to environmentally friendly printing. Community Printers and the rest of the Rise Up team have been collaborating closely to figure out how to manufacture Rise Up so that it is accessible to the public.

 

We’re proud to have created Rise Up in a way that allows it to be adapted and expanded. These expansion packs are add-ons to Rise Up. An expansion pack consists of extra game components that allow you to build onto the complete game you'll already have. And because these expansion packs are downloadable, you can print out as many copies as you want. Both expansion packs can be played with the standard and the simplified versions of the game.

Expansion Pack #1: Secret Agendas. This expansion pack is for those who want to spice up their cooperative game with a bit of competition. With the Secret Agendas expansion pack, some players can lose while others can win. Each player will have their own secret goal that they will have to accomplish by the end of the game, which will cause tensions between the players’ common goals. If a player doesn’t accomplish their agenda, and even if their movement wins, that player will lose the game.

Expansion Pack #2: Shock to the System.This expansion pack is for those that are ready for another challenge. In Rise Up, the System reacts as your movement gains power. Usually, you always draw these from the System deck. Shock to the System offers an additional deck of cards that ramp up these reactions with new major events and game mechanics, which will force players to strategize in unique ways.

Play testing the simplified version of Rise Up in Los Angeles
Play testing the simplified version of Rise Up in Los Angeles

 

Rise Up is a fun game first, and it can also be used as a powerful education and organizing tool. To take this a step further, we’re creating an education kit to go alongside Rise Up, perfect for classrooms, organizing spaces, workshops, trainings, and even for self-education. The Education Kit is a digital download, and it will be suitable for both adults and youth. It consists of activities and discussion guides that go alongside playing Rise Up. It also has interactive and engaging worksheets that help participants dive into the subject matter even further.  

 Frequently Asked Questions

What is Kickstarter?

Kickstarter is a platform that allows us to fundraise by offering people who back our project various rewards: anywhere from stickers and posters to the game itself to custom materials. You get to help make Rise Up come to life, get awesome things in return, follow the behind-the-scenes of its creation, and help influence its development.

What happens if you reach your goal? Should I still back the project?

Absolutely! Our initial goal of $35,000 is the bare minimum we need to manufacture Rise Up. However, if we're able to raise more, we'll be able to accomplish far more with the game, including produce more copies, create awesome expansion packs, translate the game into Spanish, and more. Check out our "stretch goals" for more information!

What if we’re an organization that wants to pledge, but we need to contribute through a 501(c)3?

We can make this happen! Please send us a message at contact@toolboxfored.org

Risks and challenges

TESA has been distributing games since 2011. Combined, our team has successfully run and fulfilled four crowdfunding campaigns.

However, any project has its risks, and like with any small team, there’s the possibilities of unexpected delays. While we don’t anticipate any, if we do encounter any delays, we’ll make sure to communicate about them clearly. Right now, the game is virtually complete. We’re in the final stages: working with the artist and the designer to incorporate the artwork throughout the game, which is why some of the artwork you see in some of the components currently are from Innosanto's other projects, with his permission.

If we reach our goal, we’ll be able to create a beautifully designed board game about making social change in the world. We can’t wait to share it with you!

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Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Stickers

    These two stickers will incorporate art from Rise Up.

    Includes:
    • A thank you on our website. (Optional)
    • Two Rise Up stickers
    • Shipping included for the US.
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Posters from Rise Up

    You will also get two posters of original art created by Design Action Collective for Rise Up. After the campaign finishes, you will choose which two posters you want out of the seven options.

    Includes:
    • Your choice of two beautiful posters of Rise Up art
    • Two Rise Up stickers
    • A thank you on our website. (Optional)
    • Shipping included for the US.
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $49 or more About $49

    THE GAME!

    At this level, you will receive one copy of Rise Up!

    Includes:
    • A copy of Rise Up: The Game of People & Power
    • A thank you on our website. (Optional)
    • Shipping included for the US.
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $67 or more About $67

    The game, posters, and extras!

    In addition to receiving the game, you'll be able to choose between one of the Rise Up expansion packs or the Rise Up education kit. The expansion packs and education kit will be delivered via download, which you can print and play.

    Includes:
    • A copy of Rise Up: The Game of People & Power
    • Choice of one of the expansion packs OR the Education Kit
    • Your choice of two beautiful posters of Rise Up art
    • Two Rise Up stickers
    • A thank you on our website. (Optional)
    • Shipping included for the US.
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Everything: expansions, kits, posters!

    At this level, you don't have to choose. You’ll receive ALL SEVEN of the posters of original art created by Design Action Collective. You’ll get BOTH the expansion packs for Rise Up AND the Rise Up Education Kit. These will be delivered to you as downloads, which you can print and play. You'll also receive a downloadable, print and play copy of our game Loud & Proud!

    Includes:
    • A copy of Rise Up: The Game of People & Power
    • Everything in the $67 level, plus:
    • All seven posters from Rise Up's art
    • Both expansion packs AND the education kit
    • BONUS GAME: A downloadable, print-and-play copy of Loud & Proud.
    • Two Rise Up stickers
    • A thank you on our website. (Optional)
    • Shipping included for the US.
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    101 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    Five games and a bonus copy

    At this level, you'll get everything at the $100 level, plus a total of six games (instead of just one). That's one game for free.

    Includes:
    • Six copies of Rise Up.
    • All seven posters from Rise Up's art
    • Two Rise Up stickers
    • Both expansion packs AND the education kit
    • BONUS GAME: A downloadable, print-and-play copy of Loud & Proud.
    • A thank you on our website. (Optional)
    • Shipping included for the US.
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    12 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    A custom workshop

    You'll get everything above, and we will work with you to build a custom workshop that uses Rise Up for your organization or cause. This workshop will be self-guided, and designed for you to facilitate. The workshop we build can be up to three hours long. We are experts in engaging and exciting workshops.

    Includes:
    • Six copies of Rise Up.
    • A custom workshop for your organization or cause
    • Two Rise Up stickers
    • All seven posters from Rise Up's art
    • BONUS GAME: A downloadable, print-and-play copy of Loud & Proud.
    • Both expansion packs AND the education kit
    • A thank you on our website. (Optional)
    • Shipping included for the US.
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    4 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    10 Copies and a shout out in Rise Up

    You’ll get everything in the $500 level, plus you'll get 10 games total (instead of 6). In addition, you or your organization will get a shout out on the Rise Up web page and instructions, with a brief description of your organization.

    Includes:
    • 10 copies of Rise Up
    • A description of your organization in Rise Up's instructions/site
    • A custom workshop for your organization or cause
    • Two Rise Up stickers
    • All seven posters from Rise Up's art
    • BONUS GAME: A downloadable, print-and-play copy of Loud & Proud.
    • Both expansion packs AND the education kit
    • A thank you on our website. (Optional)
    • Shipping included for the US.
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    0 backers
    $
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $2,500 or more About $2,500

    A custom expansion pack

    You’ll get everything at the $1,000 level, plus you will receive 15 games (instead of 10). If this is more than you want, we'll donate the extras in your name.

    We will also work with you to build a specific expansion pack of Rise Up for your organization or cause, that’s specifically about your organization or cause. We’ll even make it free to the public, if you’d like! That way people can play Rise Up as your organization or cause.

    Includes:
    • 15 copies of Rise Up
    • A custom expansion pack for Rise Up centered around your cause
    • A description of your organization in Rise Up's instructions/site
    • A custom workshop for your organization or cause
    • Two Rise Up stickers
    • All seven posters from Rise Up's art
    • Both expansion packs AND the education kit
    • BONUS GAME: A downloadable, print-and-play copy of Loud & Proud.
    • Shipping included for the US.
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    0 backers
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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    Featured in the instructions!

    You’ll get everything at the $2,500 level, plus: “Rise Up made possible by…” You or your organization’s logo, website, name, and description will be featured in the game instructions, website, how to play video, and educational materials.

    We will also donate 50 copies of Rise Up to groups around the country in your name/your organization's name. (And you may choose to help determine the types of groups you’d like to receive the copies.) Your organization may also claim any number of these games.

    Finally, we will also spend up to 10 hours building custom educational resources that go alongside Rise Up for you or your organization.

    Includes:
    • Featured in Rise Up's instructions & additional materials
    • 10 hours of custom education resource development from TESA
    • 15 copies of Rise Up
    • 50 more copies of Rise Up donated in your name
    • A custom expansion pack for Rise Up centered around your cause
    • BONUS GAME: A downloadable, print-and-play copy of Loud & Proud.
    • Both expansion packs AND the education kit
    • All seven posters from Rise Up's art
    • Two Rise Up stickers
    Less
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    1 backer
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Funding period

- (37 days)