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1. What is the main difference between Lost Dutchman’s onsite game and Lost Dutchman’s Virtual version?

Lost Dutchman’s Virtual game (LDV) is our newest version of the original Dutchman Onsite (LDGM) game that has been played as a classroom, onsite table-top game for nearly 30 years. LDV is played online and was developed to meet the needs of our global workforce that currently has at least half or more of its employees working remotely.

Lost Dutchman Virtual was designed to take all the dynamics, learning points, desired outcomes, and debriefing objectives from the Onsite version, and translate them onto a platform to be used, virtually, with participants around the globe, simultaneously. Whether your organization is 100% remote or any mix of remote and in-person, the Virtual version can be used as an effective tool for all members and levels of the organization.

In addition to this, we did lower the number of participants able to play the game at one time, as well as lower the recommended players per team from 6 in the onsite version, to 4 in the Virtual version. We did this to encourage more interactivity and engagement for participants.

For the facilitator, Lost Dutchman Virtual also comes with an Expedition Leader Interface, allowing the facilitator to monitor communications within teams, observe which teams purchased additional information, resources remaining in team’s inventories, and to be able to control the flow and pace of the game. This gives the facilitator a much more in-depth look at the behavior and decision-making processes of teams; thereby giving them additional amounts of information to guide the organization through a more meaningful and impactful debriefing.

2. What is the licensing arrangement for Lost Dutchman’s Virtual version?

Once you decide you’d like to begin using Lost Dutchman Virtual, we simply put you through an inexpensive, online facilitator certification course. This is a one-time fee, and after this, you’re able to facilitate Lost Dutchman Virtual with any number of groups or clients.

The only other associated costs incurred with the exercise are the individual Licenses purchased for use of the actual game. Each participant/player of the game has their own, unique interface and account. Before the exercise begins, the facilitator simply needs to have enough player licenses in their account to start the game.

If you need more licenses, simply purchase more from PMC, LLC.

Your only costs for using our product happens when you have a need to use it. There are no annual costs, hidden fees, nor other miscellaneous charges. It’s simple and straightforward with no strings attached.

3. How much time does it take to play the Virtual game?

We recommend around 4 hours for a complete experience of Lost Dutchman Virtual. Given that the debriefing is the cornerstone of the exercise, the best results come from having a solid two-hour time frame allotted for the debriefing

A basic guideline for the exercise timing is this:

  • 20 minutes for the introduction and rules
  • 20 minutes for the planning phase
  • 40 minutes for debriefing
  • 15 to 40-minute break
  • 2 hours for the debriefing

4. How many people can play the Virtual Version at once? / How few people can play?

The game is designed to be played with up to 24 people, per individual game. The breakdown is 6 teams of up to 4 people.

Based on participant feedback, we found that 4 players per team is optimal for engagement, as each team member has a task and feels involved in the decision- making process.

In addition to this, for the facilitator, 6 teams allow them to have enough time during the game to spend observing the dynamics and communications between the different teams, and to be able to spot differences in behavior from team to team.

NOTE: 24 players can play per game, but the interface allows for multiple games to be played simultaneously.

For example, two facilitators can run a group of 40 people through the exercise at the same time, with each facilitator managing a game of 20. And then the debriefing could be done with all 40 participants of the organization at the same time.

5. Is Lost Dutchman’s Virtual a good investment for an internal trainer?

Absolutely. We have many internal trainers who have been using our products for years. In fact, we’ve designed our products specifically with internal trainers in mind as tools they can use within their organization to build and encourage growth from within.

6. Is Lost Dutchman’s Virtual a good investment for a consultant?

Lost Dutchman Virtual is an incredible investment for an outside consultant to use with their clients. There are virtually, pardon the pun, zero yearly costs associated with having the rights to use the exercise. Because of how our payment system works, you only need to purchase licenses from PMC, LLC when you need to use the exercise with your clients.

In addition to this, the exercise can be used to cover a very wide array of desired outcomes and debriefing points that gives you an extremely versatile tool which can be used with all kinds of organizations and clients.

7. What is the licensing arrangement for Lost Dutchman’s-Onsite versions?

The purchasing / user agreement is quite simple: Buy a game — use it.
One purchase allows you to maintain ONE set of game materials for use. This means you may not re-manufacture or split the game into two or more parts to run more than one simulation at a given time.

But there are no restrictions on how often you can play or where.
There are copyright restrictions on the use of the images, logos, and the like and protections are in place for the intellectual property behind the simulation.

We are supporting an active and positive collaboration with our purchasers for mutual gain. The more the game is played, the more exposure it will get and the better it gets for all.

8. Is Lost Dutchman-Onsite a good investment for a consultant?

Absolutely Positively! If you are looking for a solid team building exercise with very flexible links to your main OD issues or if you are looking to develop new applications and working with large organizations, Lost Dutchman is a proven profit-maker and a bomb-proof exercise.

​It has worked quite well with senior engineers and top executives as well as with front-line workers with limited reading and mathematics skills. It is used to teach leadership and communications / thinking styles. It is used for strategy implementation as well as for simple fun.

​The game is a proven success with participants worldwide. Thus, we think that most consultants doing team development or management retreats can use it with their clients in a high-impact manner. It’s fun and is an outstanding simulation for a client retreat or conference.

​We think Dutchman offers the highest-value simulation in the marketplace. An outstanding value for consultant users who want to be in business for the long-term and want to offer something other than or along with products and services of their own design.

9. Is Lost Dutchman-Onsite a good investment for an internal trainer?

Generally, the simulations we deliver are for leadership retreats or sales conferences, often as large as 200 people and occasionally larger (600 is the largest thus far, but there are no limitations on size if one has a support staff). In that regard, it is exceptionally flexible.

Many clients use it as a kickoff to a week-long or longer training program (IBM corporate and EDS MPD are two such users) and then link various aspects of the game to issues of leadership development, personal style, communications, systems thinking, etc. The game has nice links to TQM and QFD, especially since it sets up a database for analysis.

One idea that we suggest for trainers and consultants is to use the game with their local schools, both with administration and teachers and with students or student leadership. Our schools need the help!
The simulation is metaphor-driven, which gives it a great deal of flexibility. We have built in metaphors of Square Wheels® and a whole series of other illustrations.

It is a powerful and flexible tool, and thus a good toolkit for any trainer.

10. How many versions and options are there for delivery with the Lost Dutchman-Onsite game?

We sell four basic configurations:

  • LD3 for 3 teams of up to 6 people each or 18 players in total
  • LD4 for 4 teams of up to 6 people each or 24 players in total
  • LD6 for up to 6 teams of up to 6 people each or 36 players in total
  • LD Pro is for unlimited numbers of teams and players

11. How much time does it take to play the Onsite version?

Generally, 3 to 3.5 hours to introduce, plan, play and debrief is a good timeframe. This allows moving quickly through the game but also doing an elaborate job of linking the debriefing to the issues at hand.
With larger groups of 100 – 200 people, because you are only as fast as the slowest team, we generally request a minimum of 3 hours.

With smaller groups, you can play and minimally debrief in 2.5 hours.

​If you are using the exercise as part of a longer, multi-day training session, you can play and summarize results within 2 hours. You then defer much of the debriefing specifics into the course content itself.

​We have teachers who introduce the game in one class, play the game in the next class, and debrief it as desired during the course. The kinesthetic nature of the exercise, as well as its engaging interactivity, tends to make the memories of the game quite strong and thus a key learning point made later generally works quite well.

12. How does Lost Dutchman compare to other simulations?

Dutchman is not a pencil and paper team building exercise — it is a full-blown, interactive tabletop or online simulation designed to engage participants in a highly interactive and stimulating team-based challenge.

The exercise has evolved from our experiences with other training tools and was designed to be metaphor-driven and not simply a “game for a game’s sake.” It is outcome-oriented and a powerful learning tool.

​Dutchman is fast to play but sufficiently complicated to be engaging and challenging. Unlike some other exercises, it does not contain falsehoods or traps to catch or deceive people — it is designed so that teams will communicate and collaborate. It becomes the teams’ decision as to whether they work together with other teams or not and whether they get strategic planning information before starting. Teams have sufficient information and resources to be successful. Teams take risks, but do not “die” if they fail to plan effectively.

​Dutchman is somewhat unique in that it was designed so that many aspects of the simulation can be measured. We can, for example, measure the sub-optimization that occurs when teams do not work together or share information. We can track the performance of the team on objectives and goals.

13. Is the game flexible in application?

Absolutely!! And we pride ourselves on its adaptability — it is one of Dutchman’s special attributes.

We have lots of consultants with all sorts of viewpoints, experiences, processes and products linking the metaphors and experiences of the simulation into all sorts of other aspects. One client kicks off their 2-week training program with Lost Dutchman and then keeps returning to issues as they discuss and work on various aspects of leadership development. Another company uses it for their 6-week experiential management development program and have purchased a number several games from us for use worldwide.

​A large, international institute for training purchased LD6 and then used it for about 40 training sessions for one of their courses. They also planned on using it in a variety of their week-long programs as a kick-off. A well-known foundation uses a version of the exercise with their inter-city leadership development programs — it sets the stage for their other content.

​Since we started selling it in 1993, we have continued to make improvements in the game design and delivery options.