Educational outfit Glasslab Games have taken Maxis' misguided SimCity and tried to wrestle something genuinely useful out of the thing.
They've come up with a modified version of the game called SimCityEDU: Pollution Challenge!, which not only modifies the core experience, but also can be used to track the way students are learning - and applying their skills - while playing the game.
The idea being that monitoring the way a kid reacts to challenges thrown up in a game is a lot more useful to understanding them than a traditional "right or wrong" test.
SimCity EDU isn't a bootleg program; EA staffers helped on development of the mod, and it's already being deployed to schools.
One neat change that's been made is the addition of a number of 10-minute challenges to the game. An example given in this Fast Company report is "Can you use fewer bus stops to get all the kids to school?", and at the conclusion of each everyone gets feedback on what they did right and what they did wrong.