Video games are powerful market and social forces. They can make learning fun, interactive, and stimulating. ‘Lemonade Stand’ was a 1970s computer game that engaged children in pricing, advertising, buying, and selling lemonade. From this promising beginning an industry has grown that includes serious games, gamification and game-infused learning. The focus can be on games designed for education, the use of game elements in workplace training, simulations such as flight trainers, or on social benefit. Players can try out unfamiliar roles and contexts and make consequential decisions, for example in simulated financial trading. However, it is difficult to balance learning with fun. A solution may lie in collaboration between professional game designers, software engineers, and learning experts. Together, these groups could develop game engines based on effective pedagogy, employing learning analytics to adapt game experiences to players’ educational goals and actions.