Inspirational game designers

July 14, 2012
Category: Resilience

Recently I watched an awesome presentation on Ted.com about a game designer who invented a game whilst dealing with acute suicidal ideation after a brain injury. The presentation was interactive and she received a standing ovation after presenting some well known concepts from a different perspective. In another post I will explore Post-Traumatic Growth which I will explore in another post. 

At the absolute depth of the suicidal ideation Jane came up with a game to help get her out of the dark place she was at. She created a role playing recovery game called ‘Jane The Concussion Slayer’ which involved bringing a game into real life starting with living her own avatar as Jane the concusison slayer. She started gathering allies to fight with and she mentions this was her way of asking for help. They identified the ‘bad guys’ which was anything that would trigger her symptoms and slow down the healing process. They identified ‘Power Ups’ which were things that could make her feel slightly better like spending time doing things that made her feel good such as exercise and spending time with pets.

In summary the game involves:

  • Adopt a secret identity
  • Recruit allies
  • Battle the bad guys
  • Activate ‘Power Ups’

As a result of sharing this game online she found that it helped a lot of people who were coping with both physical and mental illness and as a result she designed the game ‘Super Better’. More information about the game can be found here.  The game explores 4 types of resilience – mental, physical, emotional and social.

Check out Jane’s Ted talk – The Game that can give you 10 extra years of life -Jane McGonical http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/en/jane_mcgonigal_the_game_that_can_give_you_10_extra_years_of_life.html

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