The X Penny Game

The X Penny Game is a simulation game exploring the effects of WIP limits. It is a combination of Karen Greaves modified Scrum Penny game with Karl Scotland’s version of the Ball Flow Game.

This game is geared to show the importance of limiting the work in progress and to explore the following formula (implied by Little’s Law)

Flow Time = WIP/Throughput

  • Flow Time (Cycle Time, Lead Time) – average amount of time it takes to fully complete a unit of work
  • WIP (Work In Process) – is the average amount of units in the system
  • Throughput – average number of units being completed within a given time frame

The game is designed to work with 6 to 12 people – we had 8 players and 1 facilitator

The team divides into the following roles:

  • 1 – Customer
  • 5 – Workers
  • The rest are efficiency experts

We had a total of 8 players (6 workers, 2 efficiency experts).

The team organises themselves around a table. The image below shows how our team arranged themselves. Each worker has an empty area on the table directly in from of them referred to as a workspace.

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