The Systems Game, by Joanna Macy, is played in an open space by a group of people. Each person selects two others in the group and tries to keep an equal distance between them and each of the other two. Physically playing The Systems Game tangibly illustrates many of the dynamics of complex systems — self-regulation through activity, emergent layers of activity (clockwise or counterclockwise group motion), and interdependence of parts.
See The Systems Game played by a group of Carnegie Mellon University students.
In this computational model of The Systems Game, agents randomly select two others from which to find an equidistant position. By clicking “Show Constraints” and “Next Agent,” you can see the intent behind an agent’s movement. If the system reaches a static configuration, clicking “Remove” will randomly remove five agents, and start the system in motion again.