DeepWell Digital Therapeutics and Global Game Jam have announced a game jam to prove that games positively affect mental health.
Mike Wilson, CEO of DeepWell, spoke about the event on the main stage at the Game Developers Conference today and called on game developers to join the mission.
Wilson, co-founder of Devolver Digital, started DeepWell in Seattle to create games that are actually certified to help improve mental health. The game jam will run from May 1 to May 22, and it is committed to engaging and challenging the gaming community to use its powerful skills to create games that demonstrate how video game themes and mechanics can be used as treatment mechanisms.
It will also encourage games that help dispel misconceptions and social stigmas about openly discussing and addressing mental health issues. And it will encourage games that build a community that works to connect and support those suffering from stress, anxiety and depression.
Over the course of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, trendlines around global mental health challenges have accelerated at a rapid pace. The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) projects that one in five people in the US will be diagnosed with a mental health condition each year, and as many as one in two people will be diagnosed with a mental health problem in their lifetime. The real and qualitative costs of failing to address mental wellbeing in society are enormous, with consequences such as job instability, workplace stress and online harassment.
Addressing mental health issues through treatment and support is essential to creating cultures that embrace diversity, recognizing the role of playmakers and the often untapped power of play.
Enter DeepWell DTx – a new video game publisher and developer dedicated to creating the best gameplay that can simultaneously entertain and deliver, enhance and accelerate the treatment of a range of pervasive mental illnesses worldwide.
Led by a team of more than 40 consultants who act as creators, game designers, scientists and medical professionals, DeepWell creates a series of DTx games that provide a new tool to help confront the widespread crisis that continues to threaten healthcare systems. the world.
“The environment of a game jam is the perfect place to explore and experiment with new ideas and approaches to problem solving. And as the world’s largest game jam event, the Global Game Jam is excited to see our community creating games around this critical topic,” said Kate Edwards, executive director of the GGJ, in a statement.
How to participate?
The event kicks off on May 1, but developers can join anytime after that until May 22. More info can be found here.
All games created for the DeepWell DTx Mental Health Game Jam will be promoted on the GGJ’s itch.io page for public viewing and playing. Prices will be announced later.
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