AWS GameDay

Fun, gamified, hands-on learning


About AWS GameDay

GameDay is a collaborative learning exercise that tests skills in implementing AWS solutions to solve real-world problems in a gamified, risk-free environment. This is a completely hands-on opportunity for technical professionals to explore AWS services, architecture patterns, best practices, and group cooperation.

Our approach is unconventional compared to other learning formats. Ambiguity and non-prescriptive guidance allow teams the flexibility to think creatively as they navigate a wide array of technical challenges. There is no one right answer; teams pave their own path based on resources we provide them with in live AWS accounts. If you enjoy open-ended challenges without step-by-step instructions, look no further.

The setting for every GameDay is our famous (fictitious) narrative. Participants are new hires at Unicorn.Rentals and this is their first day on the job.

Unicorn.Rentals New Hires

Congratulations on your new position at Unicorn.Rentals! We are the largest provider of mythical creatures in the world, fulfilling the needs of parents who have caved to their childrens' demands of temporary use of a unicorn.

As part of our dominance of the Legendary Animal Rental Market (LARM), we understand the importance of our human capital and invest heavily in training programs for our growing team of technical experts. This will be a new hire orientation that you will never forget!

Unicorn Rentals

Upcoming Events

AWS GameDay – Where is Kyle? - Nov. 4th

The infrastructure used to operate Unicorn.Rentals has been disabled due to non-payment and the CEO Kyle is missing. Your priority is returning the application to an operational state and locate Kyle within four hours. No sweat, right?

November 4, 2021 | 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM CET
Language: English (German-speaking AWS support staff available)

Stay tuned for future opportunities to participate and follow us on Twitter, Reddit, or Twitch.

GameDay Essentials

Join us for an interactive, six-part series to get hands-on cloud computing experience in the fun, fictitious startup world of Unicorn.Rentals! These videos will help you get up to speed for your first New Hire Orientation.
  • Episode 1: Recon

    When you jump into an AWS account, it’s common to have existing resources in that account, and GameDay is no exception. Finding out what you have is essential to be successful in the game. We’ll talk about how to identify your inventory and assess your configuration. You’ll get some background on logging services, such as Cloudtrail and Cloudwatch. Bring your browser, your questions and your love for unicorns; it’s going to be a blast!

    GameDay Essentials | Episode 1 - Recon (1:01:06)
  • Episode 2: Scaling

    Scaling your application infrastructure is a critical component to being successful in Gameday. It starts with autoscaling groups, but it doesn’t end there. We learn about various scaling techniques, where it makes sense to use them and how to implement with running infrastructure. Of course, we’ll have a few surprises for you. Don’t miss it!

    GameDay Essentials | Episode 2: Scaling (1:00:54)
  • Episode 3: Changes

    Just like in real life™, your Gameday is not static, you’ll have to deal with change; whether that’s more users or new code. We’ll dive into team dynamics, which is a key component to success, as well as show you how to use native AWS security and deployment tools to track and manage change.

    GameDay Essentials | Episode 3: Changes (57:46)
  • Episode 4: Decoupling

    Tightly coupled systems live together and die together. We’ll explore how loosely coupled systems operate, and how to diagnose failures when something goes wrong. A plan for failure outplays a failure to plan every time, so tune in to get the answers you need to win.

    GameDay Essentials | Episode 4: Decoupling (50:54)
  • Episode 5: Security is Job Zero

    At AWS, security is job zero, and it should be for you too. An advantage of the AWS cloud is that you can scale and innovate, all the while maintaining a secure environment. In GameDay, paying attention to security can be the difference between winning and losing. We’ll look at access methods, how to securely access services and unscramble the topic of encryption. As always, there will be fun facts, audience polls and lots of surprises.

    GameDay Essentials | Episode 5 - Security is Job Zero (58:31)
  • Episode 6: Optimizing for Cost

    Frugality is one of our core principles at Amazon, and in GameDay, it’s literally part of the scoring equation. Making smart choices to optimize cost is your key to climbing the scoreboard and taking home the prize. We’ll look at instance optimization, explore cost management tools built into your account and share plenty of tips and tricks along the way. You’re sure to learn new skills that you can take to any AWS environment and be a hero.

    GameDay Essentials | Episode 6: Optimizing for Cost (1:01:15)