Upcoming events

Follow Us

AUGSBURG, 1531

Wrestling with the Reformation: Augsburg, 1531

by Emily Fisher Gray

As a member of the City Council of Augsburg in 1531, you will have to balance the competing demands of the citizens and the Emperor, while considering the implications of various Reformed positions for the city’s military defense, economic growth, and spiritual purity. Should you adopt the Augsburg Confession, a statement of principles presented during the 1530 Augsburg Reichstag by Martin Luther’s colleagues from Wittenberg? Or join the four “Tetrapolitan” cities that offered an alternate vision of reform influenced by Ulrich Zwingli? Or perhaps you should you support the Confutatio Pontificia, the strong rebuttal to the Augsburg Confession written by representatives of the Pope in Rome and endorsed by the Emperor? Decisions about religious practices in Augsburg could provoke a riot from reform-minded citizens or cause Emperor Charles V to make good on his promise to invade the city and revoke its independent charter. In this volatile environment, Augsburg needs allies, but alliances are dependent on the type of reform Augsburg chooses. As does Augsburg’s ability to feed its poor, protect its rapid proto-capitalist economic growth, and deal with the problem of Anabaptists infiltrating the community. The salvation of souls and Augsburg’s very survival are at stake.

ABOUT THE GAME

Details

Disciplines
Cultural and Social History; Medieval History; Religion; Western Civ/History; World History


Era 
16th Century; Early Modern Period

Geography 
Europe


Level
Level 4 game (what's that mean?


Themes and Issues  
Religion, Politics, Sausages, 


Player Interactions 
Factional, Competitive, Collaborative, Coalition-Building



Sample Class Titles

Renaissance and Reformation; Western Civilization; Europe 1300-1700


Mechanics

Rolling Dice


Chaos and Demand on Instructor

This game is mildly chaotic and mildly demanding on the instructor.


Notable Roles 
Conrad Peutinger, Daniel Hopfer, Philip Adler



Primary Source Highlights

The Augsburg Confession, The Tetrapolitan Confession, the Confutatio Pontificia

Using the Game

Class Time  
For this game 7-8 sessions (1 to 2 setup,5 game, 1 debrief) are recommended.


Possible Reacting Game Pairings
This game can be used on its own, or with other games. These pairings are meant to be illustrative rather than exhaustive or prescriptive.  Augsburg, 1531 may pair well with:


Assignments

You can adjust the assignments to fit the desired learning outcomes of your class. This game can include letter writing and persuasive writing to be adapted into speeches. All roles are required to give formal speeches.


Class Size and Scalability
 
This game is recommended for classes with 12 to 40 students. Roles over 28 are doubled. Special instructions are in the Instructor's Manual for small classes (12 or fewer). For classes over 40 students, it is recommended to divide the class into two groups so everyone has a chance to fully participate.

Reviews 

"'Augsburg'” is a well-conceived and well-crafted game about the Reformation in Germany. While not a complex game, individual objectives and nondoctrinal issues might well add a bit of surprise and variability to the play of the game. It brings the Reformation 'down to earth' by focusing not only on the theological debates, but the way that religious changes affected the lived experiences of German city-dwellers in the 16th century."

"I think this game has a number of levels of religious, political, and economic complexity. This should make it a rich experience for students. The Reformation was certainly a defining moment in Western history and this game really exposes the fact that the outcome was both religious and political."

"This game is just really well written! Very clear and straightforward; minimal changes to venue, which can sometimes be confusing for students. Very well structured and laid out, with a natural progress of ideas and injects by the instructor to keep the tension high. From the student perception, I think the game starts deceptively simple. I suspect students will come in with an attitude of, 'oh, let’s just be tolerant,' but the first session can disabuse them of that notion and drive students to truly wrestle with the issues."


GAME MATERIALS

Reacting Consortium members can download all game materials below. You will be asked to sign in before downloading.  

Gamebook

All students need a Gamebook, which includes resources and historical content. Members can download the Gamebook, and provide it to students for free or at cost.

Student Gamebook 
Version 4.2. Updated Summer 2021.

Instructor's Manual

The Instructor's Manual includes guidance for assigning roles, presenting historical context, assignments, activities and discussion topics, and more.

Instructor's Manual 
Version 4.2. Updated Summer 2021.

Role Sheets and Primary Sources

Students also need a Role Sheet, which contains biographical information, suggestions for further reading, and role-specific info or assignments.  

Role Sheets

Primary and Additional Sources Role and Sources -Version 4.2. Updated Summer 2021.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Emily Fisher Gray

Emily Fisher Gray received a doctorate in early modern European history from the University of Pennsylvania in 2004. She spent three years as a postdoctoral teaching fellow at Penn before joining the Norwich University faculty in 2007.

Gray has written on the early causes and progress of the Protestant Reformation, the phenomenon of Lutheran-Catholic co-existence, and the unique aesthetics of Lutheran architecture. Her ongoing research takes place in churches, libraries and archives in the former Free Imperial Cities of southern Germany, especially Augsburg, where she lived for a year as a Fulbright Fellow.

Reacting and Related Titles

  • Peace of Westphalia: Creating a New European State-System, 1648

QUESTIONS

Members can contact game authors directly

We invite instructors join our Facebook Faculty Lounge, where you'll find a wonderful community eager to help and answer questions. We also encourage you to submit your question for the forthcoming FAQ, and to check out our upcoming events


YOU MAY ALSO LIKE...

 title=Henry VIII
Henry VIII and the Reformation Parliament

 title=French Revolution
Rousseau, Burke, and Revolution in France, 1791

 title=Trial of Galileo
The Trial of Galileo: Aristotelianism, the "New Cosmology," and the Catholic Church, 1616-1633

reacting@barnard.edu

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software