Sharing the findings of research projects to improve future practice is often an important objective of educational research. However disseminating the results to groups that will directly benefit can sometimes be problematic and there may also be complexities around presenting research in a context that gives real-world relevance. The informal environment of game play is one method that can be utilised to promote targeted discussion and present research in a format that is both fun and engaging. This paper explores how two board games that had their beginnings in research projects were developed. One of these projects explored students' perceptions of their higher education experiences (Staying the Course), and the other investigating staff experiences of course development (Supporting Responsive Curricula). Neither project was initially tasked with developing a game, but both project teams believed that games would help with sharing the findings of the projects widely. The underlying philosophy of both authors was to design an active learning environment in which players could learn via discussion activities and testing their understanding. By using the medium of a board game we aimed to provide an opportunity to examine problematic issues within the 'magic circle' of game play. This would provide an environment in which players could contribute to linked discussion and start thinking about different perspectives and how they could make improvements to existing situations. This paper describes the approaches used to design each game in relation to the differing contexts for game play: one of the games is intended for use by students and those advising them, whilst the other is for course development teams which may be composed of students, administrative, technical and administrative staff in universities. The identification of design elements to make the games effective is also discussed.