Wednesday, June 20, 2018    
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Quiz Questions for the Basic Game Play


  1. What are the four negative risk strategies? (Mitigate, Avoid, Transfer, and Accept)
  2. What are the four positive risk strategies? (Enhance, Exploit, Share, and Accept)
  3. What is the difference between a risk and an issue? (Issues have already occured. Risks have not yet occurred.)
  4. What are the 4 process phases that follow Initiating? (Planning, Executing, Control & Monitoring, and Closing)
  5. What is another word for a positive risk? (Opportunity)
  6. Which process phase is the most expensive in the Project Risk game, and typically the most expensive also in real projects? (Execution)
  7. In 2-3 sentences, explain why it pays to identify triggers. (Identifying triggers allows the project team to spot the early indicators that the risk event is starting to occur and take further risk reduction actions, such as early implementation of a Plan B.)
  8. The impact score normally comes from a formula of "the assessed project impact" should the risk times what other factor?  (Probability)
  9. Can professional project management guarantee that a project will be completed successfully? (No. Although it greatly increases the probability, luck and external environmental factors can still cause a project to fail.)
  10. Which project game steps is useful in risk identification because it permits a systemic evaluation of the work? (WBS. A work breakdown structure (WBS) is a tool used to define and group a project's discrete work elements (or tasks) in a way that helps organize and define the total work scope of the project. A work breakdown structure element may be a product, data, a service, or any combination. A WBS also provides the necessary framework for detailed cost estimating and control along with providing guidance for schedule development and control. Additionally the WBS is a dynamic tool and can be revised and updated as needed by the project manager.)


  1. Describe the concept of secondary risks and give and example from the game and real life. (Secondary risks are new risks that come into play caused by the actions of our risk management. For example in the game the cost of avoiding a risk may deplete our chip reserve and make us more vulnerable to lose. For example in a real project involving the installation of safety equipment on a new product, the new safety mechanism may itself fail and need replacement or incur problems of its own.)
  2. You are the project manager for an office building and the sponsor has selected a complicated security system that few people in the world have worked with. Your project team has worked with many other security systems in the past. But this one makes you very concerned about unknown problems and potential impact to the cost and schedule. Describe how each of the four negative risk strategies could be used to address this particular type of risk.  (Mitigate could include interviewing experts or getting training. Avoid would mean replacing this specific security system with another one that your team has experience with. Transfer could include hiring out this portion of the project to a vendor with this expertise. And accept would be to take your chances with having your team try it.)
  3. In general do the teams that start out the fastest  (or that are leading in the 6th project reporting period) win  the game in the end? What does your answer teach you in regards to real projects?
Quiz Questions for the Earned Value Activity


  1. On the earned value line chart the planned value line comes from the expected project budget and schedule. What are the other two lines that you fill in through the project reporting periods? (Actual cost and Earned Value)
  2. What does SPI stand for? (Schedule Performance Index)
  3. What does CPI stand for? (Cost Performance Index)
  4. Can your Earned Value line ever decrease (be a lower point in one period compared to the project's previous period), and if so what would that mean? (Yes, in the game it would mean that we have moved backwards on the roadmap. In a real project it would mean that rework was required.)


  1. What is the formula for CPI? (EV/AC)
  2. What is the formula for SPI? (EV/PV)
Set-Up Tips
  • Stack the chips in piles of 10. This makes counting faster.
  • If you are using the Earned Value sheet (optional) lay a red and a black pen on top of the sheet so they don't have to search for them later.
  • Open the workbook cover up next to the game board so that it is displaying the roadmap graphic. That indicates that learners are supposed to use it as opposed to holding the workbook for later.
  • Lay the instruction sheet right on top of the game board and encourage early arrivers to read the instructions.
  • If you have teams competing against each other, consider using a flip chart to track the period progression of the teams.
Team Chip Rewards for Learning

One flexible method for the instructor to reinforce learning and to help dispurse funds to struggling teams is to offer chips (usually in quantities of 2-5) for teams who volunteer first to take a test. Then when the first team volunteers you tell them they must look at you during the Q&A, and not at the game board.

Ask the team to do one of the following:

  1. State the 5 process groups in order
  2. State the 4 negative and 4 positive risk strategies
  3. Look at Risk Card X and give a real-life trigger example
Tips for Playing with Large Groups

The Project Risk Game has been successfully played with groups sizes up to about 45 with one instructor. However it can get to be challenging to field all of the questions and to control the game play. Here are a few tips to consider when your group size exceeds 4 game boards:

  1. Instead of having each team roll their own dice, you can have one announcer (possibly you/the facilitator) roll both dice. This helps ensure that the teams will follow your pace, it helps you direct them with each "period" saying "Have your project manager pawn move forward 4 spaces and pay the bank now." Then roll the black dice, and together read what the risk card rolled says.
  2. Consider having a co-facilitator help you by walking around and assisting all of the players. You can train your own co-facilitator, feel free to contact us. We love to come out to assist with Project Risk play.
  3. If you don't have a co-facilitator, request that the questions get asked publicly instead of individually so that you don't spend time answering the same questions over to each team.
  4. Consider skipping the optional Earned Value part of the game to help simplify the process. 
Alternative Approach for Learning the Lingo

If the game is being played to help reinforce the workbook and terminology THEY HAVE ALREADY LEARNED, consider playing with this additional twist.

For each "period" the pawn lands on a step. A player on the team must define what that step is. Rotate the assignment to state the definition between players. Instruct teams to select who will be the first definer before they begin.

Briefly (and in your own words) define the step. If player can define it without resources, there is no penalty. If they have to look it up in the glossary, they should look it up – read it and as a penalty, take one team member pawn off the game board.


Project Risk game box

Try Before You Buy?

You may have Successful Projects lead the Project Risk game with your audience without buying the game boards for the normal cost of a facilitated workshop (rates vary depending upon length, location, and details). Then if you would like to have us leave the Project Risk board games with you for your continued use, you will save the shipping cost and also receive a discount for the "slightly used" board games.


Please contact us for a price quote and date availability.

PMO Version

Click here to download the PMO Version information.


Thank you to Richard Seigler from Loyola University for inventing a wonderful twist on the Project Risk board game.   Richard calls this the PMO version and it includes the option to hire a consultant (pawn), an added  management reserve (extra chips), it ties the schedule to the number of team members involved, it adds a “heroic approach” option, and has a different end scoring approach.

Copyright 2017 by Successful Projects